Here's what I think about the Google purchase of YouTube. I think that as soon as Google hosts all the YouTube content, there will be no way of knowing the monetization potential of any piece of contested material without Google's participation. In otherwords, everybody who guesses how many hits, and therefore how valuable some piece of content is in terms of eyeballs will have to ask Google and Google would have to be compelled to divulge that information. Then what happens? Google can make a quick calculation of what it's worth, in terms of ad revenue, to deal or no deal. If it's no deal, Google cuts the piece of content loose and its value drops to zero.
The trick is having the entire infrastructure of the Googleplex which would host the valuable content. That makes them the equivalent of the broadcast TV networks, and if entertainment lawyers are dancing naked because they think that YouTube is a litigation free-for all just waiting to happen, they will quickly find out how difficult it is to sue the network.
All of that seems to be a big fuss over content that's primarily only valuable because Google broadcasts it, some very small fraction of which has any commercial value in any other form. Only Google has the free billions of equity required to do any of this so, it's essentially a win situation for them. It seems to me that this is something only Google could do because they're the ones investing in the Googleplex.