Jawed Karim is an American entrepreneur who is the co-founder of YouTube. He founded a venture fund investment group called Youniversity Ventures which is commonly known as Y Ventures. He is of Bangladeshi and German descent. Jawed Karim was there with YouTube right from the first ever YouTube video uploaded, the revenue of which was last estimated to be over $28.80 billion in 2021. His contribution to the growth of YouTube is simply indispensable.
Jawed Karim was the very first YouTuber. He uploaded a video titled “ Me at the zoo” on April 24th, 2005. The video was shot by his friend Yakov Lapitsky during a trip to the San Diego Zoo and in the video, he was explaining about an elephant’s trunk with elephants in the background. It is a 19-second video that has 170 million views as of 23rd June 2021. With only 1 video posted on his channel, it is surprising how he has up to 1.95 million subscribers today.
YouTube has gained popularity over the years and I know you have interacted with it in one way or another either as a general viewer or a producer of content or even both. Anyone with internet connectivity would have seen videos on YouTube at least once in their life. YouTube is the platform that gave birth to many sensations; without the video-sharing website, there would have been no T-Series, Pewdiepie, CarryMinati, and thousands of other video creators. The current YouTube CEO is Susan Wojcicki, who became the CEO of the American online video sharing and social media platform in February 2014.
Jawed Karim Early Life:
Jawed Karim is a software engineer and entrepreneur of Bangladeshi German descent. Born on October 28th, 1979, Karim is one of the most accomplished people in the tech world having solved many technological problems using his skills. In Mersberg, East Germany, he was born to Naimul Karim, his Bangladeshi father, and Christine Karim, his German scientist mother.
While living in East Germany, the family experienced a lot of xenophobia which forced them to move several times to different places and eventually crossed the inner German border in the early 1980s in search of peaceful settlements. They first moved to West Germany but still struggled with xenophobia. The Karim’s eventually settled in Minnesota in 1992.
Jawed’s father worked at 3M as a researcher and his mother at the University of Minnesota as a scientist and associate professor specializing in biochemistry. Jawed has a younger brother called Ilias Karim who was born in 1989, ten years after himself.
Jawed Karim Education:
Jawed Karim was a student at Saint Paul Central High School which is the oldest high school in the state of Minnesota. He graduated from high school in 1997 and joined the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign department. At the university, he was studying computer science.
Though he was born in Merseburg, Jawed Karim grew up in Neuss, West Germany. He had to cross the border of inner Germany along with his family in the early 1980s due to increasing xenophobia there. However, he had to face several other episodes of xenophobia in Neuss as well, which is why he again had to move with his family to Saint Paul, Minnesota, in 1992. It was from Saint Paul Central High School that Karim graduated in 1997.
Jawed enrolled at the University of Illinois in the Department of Computer Science. Jawed left the university before completing his graduation and joined PayPal; he was one of PayPal’s earliest employees. He later completed his graduation and obtained his degree in Computer Science in 2004. Jawed eventually joined Stanford University and earned his Master’s degree in Computer Science but that was after YouTube was founded.
Jawed was fortunate enough to work at PayPal from 2002 even before he graduated. He combined working and studying which shows how genius he is. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in computer science in 2004 and continued his studies a year later earning a master’s degree in computer science from Stanford University.
Before working for PayPal, Jawed was an intern at Silicon Graphics which was an American high-performing company in silicon valley, San Francisco which is known for manufacturing both computer hardware and computer software. Jawed while interning, worked on 3D voxel data management, and created solutions to 3D Graphics problems.
Jawed Karim Achievements:
Co-Founder of YouTube:
Jawed Karim co-founded YouTube, an online video sharing platform, together with Steven Chen and Chad Hurley in 2005. Jawed met the two while he was working at PayPal. Steven and Chad were interested in Jawed as they had heard about his excellent tech skills as he had invented PayPal’s powerful anti-internet fraud system.
The YouTube concept was born but beginning the channel was not easy at first due to the many steps involved. The three YouTube founders were relieved when Sequoia Capital and Artis Capital, funded YouTube with 11.5 million and 8 million respectively, the developmental stages of the app and website were made easier. Money solves problems.
Jawed was the first person ever in the world to create a YouTube channel. He was also the first person to post a video. Both were done on 23rd April 2005. Jawed agreed to take a lower share in the company and remain as an informal adviser while studying instead of being an employee.
Jawed remains to be one of the shareholders of YouTube, a video sharing platform, with 137,443 shares of stock which were about $64 million at the time of purchase by Google in 2006. He is also one of the greatest advisers of YouTube to date.
Jawed Karim has updated the video description on his first video to “I can’t comment here anymore, as I don’t want a Google+ account”.
He also pointed out the ability to easily and quickly identify bad content as an essential feature of a user-generated content platforms.
Speaker at Various Technological events:
Ever since Jawed Karim was known to be one of the cofounders of YouTube, he has been invited to speak in many forums. In May 2008, YouTube Co-Founder Jawed Karim made his first public speech at the University of Illinois where he was invited to speak about the history of YouTube and how the YouTube concept was born in the May 2008 ACM Conference. He was later on announced as the 136th and youngest commencement speaker in the school’s history.
The topics he covers are based around Social Media, Robotics, Software, Technology, Venture Capital, Innovation, Hardware, Cybersecurity, E-commerce, YouTube, and many more. All things tech!!
Jawed Karim is multilingual. Apart from speaking fluently in English, he is also able to speak German and Bengali which are the national languages of Germany and Bangladesh respectively which he has origins from through his mother and father respectively.
Founded Y Ventures:
Many people often ask, where is Jawed Karim today/now? Jawed Karim is focusing on his businesses.
Jawed Karim is an internet entrepreneur. He founded a venture fund investment group called Youniversity Ventures which is commonly known as Y Ventures. He founded it in March 2008 together with his partners Keith Rabois and Kevin Hartz.
Just in case you are wondering, Keith Rabois is also a partner at Khosla Ventures and Kevin Hartz is the co-founder of Eventbrite.
Y Ventures has invested in numerous growing companies such as Airbnb the hospitality service company, Reddit, Eventbrite, and Palantir, just to mention a few. The company aims to provide finances to university entrepreneurs and generally first-time entrepreneurs with great ideas.
Click here to have a look at Y Ventures’ website and to read more about the work they are doing with companies they have funded and partnered with.
Jawed Karim Net Worth:
Jawed Karim has a net worth of $190 million. He owns 137,443 shares of stock of YouTube that if sold today by Google are worth over $140 million. His shares in addition to his other incomes such as that from his investment company, all add up to his net worth of $190 million as of 2021.
Jawed Karim lives in Palo Alto in California, United States. However, photos of where he lives let alone his house are not available to the public as he doesn’t share them.
There is no clear information about his private life, wealth, like a car collection, due to his level of privacy. His wife and children are not known to the public.
Jawed Karim Wife:
Rumors, however, state that Jawed Karim has a wife. He is in a relationship with Kia Abdulla who is a novelist hailing from the United Kingdom. Kia Abdulla is famous for authoring Child’s Play which was published in 2009 and Life, Love, and Assimilation which was published in 2006.
Jawed Karim Biography:
|Real Name||Jawed Karim|
|Profession||Entrepreneur, Internet Entrepreneur, Software Engineer|
|Popular for||Co-founder of YouTube, Uploader of the first video ever on YouTube|
|Date Of Birth||28 October 1979|
|Age||42 Years (As of 2022)|
|College Name||University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (BS), Stanford University (MS)|
|Educational Qualification||Master’s degree in Computer Science|
|Martial Status||Not Known|
|Wife||Aanchal Kumar (Model)|
|Net Worth||$300 million|
|School||Saint Paul Central High School|
Jawed Karim – How he founded Youtube?
At PayPal, he met Steve Chen and Chad Hurley, the other two creators of YouTube. The absence of video clips of Super Bowl XXXVIII and the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami gave Jawed the idea of a video-sharing platform. The controversial half-time segment of the Super Bowl with Janet Jackson was a rage at that time that everyone wanted to have a glimpse of. However, Hurley and Chen have mentioned the website Hot or Not, a rating site that allows the users to rate the attractiveness of the photos submitted voluntarily by the users, as the motivation behind creating YouTube. The founders also stated that had an online video version of a dating site in their minds when they decided to launch YouTube.
Now, if you are wondering whether YouTube was the first video-sharing website on the internet, then it was not the first of these sites. This is because Vimeo was launched in November 2004, before YouTube, but as it was a side project of the developers of the Los Angeles-based internet comedy company, CollegeHumor then, Vimeo failed to grow that fast.
YouTube as a Dating Site and Why it Didn’t Work Out!
YouTube, as mentioned before, was originally thought to be set up as an online video dating site, with “Hot or Not” as a major influence for the founders, but that didn’t work out well. The founders even tried to post on Craigslist and request attractive women to upload their videos on YouTube in exchange for $100 for each such video post. However, they failed to pivot on the same plan due to the lack of enough dating videos. The website’s founders then changed their plans and began to accept videos of all sorts. Whatever may have been the inspiration, we are glad to have YouTube today!
After the necessary measures and steps were in place, the ‘YouTube’ domain name was activated on 14th February 2005. After receiving the funding of $3.5 million from Sequoia Capital they launched the YouTube beta site in May 2005.
A series of developments followed. The company eventually commenced as a venture capital-funded technology startup. YouTube then continued to receive funding from several other investors including Sequoia Capital, which poured in $11.5 million, and Artis Capital Management, which funded the platform with another $8 million, the largest of the investors for YouTube then. These funding’s massively helped YouTube to scale fast.
Initially, the company was headquartered in San Mateo, California, right above a pizzeria and a Japanese restaurant before it expanded its headquarters in San Bruno.
Jawed Karim – YouTube Google Acquisition
After launching YouTube, YouTube founder Jawed Karim became an informal adviser instead of an employee to the company as he wanted to complete his studies, subsequently joining Stanford University. Comparatively, he took a lower share in the company than other co-founders, Steve Chan and Chad Hurley.
Much of the time, he remained unrecognized by the general public until Google’s arrival. It was only when YouTube was sold to Google for nearly $1.65 billion in the year 2006 that Karim was again back in the news and media.
This small share still proved large enough to let him receive close to 137,443 shares, worth around $64 million, at the closing of the famous Google acquisition of YouTube. Currently, the net worth of Jawed Karim is $300 million.
Jawed Karim delivered a lecture in the year 2006 at the annual ACM Conference of the University of Illinois on YouTube’s history, which was titled “YouTube From Concept to Hyper growth”. Furthermore, Karim came back to the University of Illinois in May 2008, where he was again selected as the speaker, thereby becoming the 136th and the youngest Commencement Speaker in the history of the school.
Jawed Karim – Opposing You tube’s Decisions
In 2013, Google made major changes to its policy. A user needed a Google+ to account for posting a comment on any YouTube video. The move faced backlash and was widely opposed by the YouTube community. To voice discontent against the new policy, an online petition was signed by a number of users.
The petition gained around 240,000 signatures. Karim too was not in favour of the policy change; to oppose the Google+ intervention, he updated the video description on his first video to “I can’t comment here anymore, as I don’t want a Google+ account”.
After the protests from the YouTube community, Google apologized for forcing Google+ users to use their real names, and subsequently, Google dropped the policy of integration of Google+ with YouTube. In 2018, Google permanently disabled Google+ services after it failed in both consumer and developer adoption.
Karim also criticized the recent move of removal of dislike count on YouTube. He expressed “when every YouTuber agrees that removing dislikes is a stupid idea, it probably is. Try again, YouTube.”
Jawed Karim Facts:
- Jawed Karim is an avid learner and a man who is strictly dedicated to his work. Despite multiple problems and phobias, he continued to work hard from an early age and now the entire world knows as the first YouTuber and the co-founder of the video-sharing website.
- Apart from speaking fluently in English, he is also able to speak German and Bengali which are the national languages of Germany and Bangladesh respectively which he has origins from through his mother and father respectively.
- Jawed Karim founded an organization called the Karim Immigration which is a Canadian immigration firm that provides counsel and represents its clients worldwide.
- He grabbed the opportunity to work for PayPal which turned a turning point in his life.
- He continued his higher studies even after founding YouTube and earned his master’s degree from Stanford University. During his study time, he was serving YouTube as an advisor.
- Besides, Karim had a major say in many crucial YouTube decisions, including the one to collaborate with companies like Google and NBC, which can undoubtedly be marked as some of the most significant reasons behind the popularity that YouTube enjoys today.
- Jawed Karim’s “Me at the zoo” was You tube’s first video that was uploaded on the social media platform.