research design laboratory

Video on the Web

Back in early 2005, a plucky little start-up company called YouTube launched their video sharing service. Originally conceived as a video dating service, their easy upload process and flash video player provided an easy way to get video up on the web. Prior to flash, there were competing video formats and files uploaded to the web typically required browser plugins to work. But because of the high penetration of flash support in modern web browsers, the videos worked everywhere. And more importantly, they could easily be put anywhere on the web by copy and pasting the embed code YouTube provided. This had much to do with YouTube's success, as the popularity of MySpace was exploding and by using embedded videos from YouTube, people with no experience managing a website could suddenly upload a video and have it appear on their page. By 2006, video was everywhere. Today, YouTube's dominance of the online video market is obvious and in a sense it's become the de facto standard for sharing and consuming video on the web. But there are still many other services available. While their features are often quite similar, their communities are remarkably different. Vimeo's early entry into HD video cultivated a community of indie filmmakers and camera nerds. By providing robust file conversion features and a revenue sharing program, built a community of dedicated video podcasters and citizen journalists. Viddler and Brightcove have built tools that appeal to advertisers and brand promoters. And niche services have emerged around content genres, such as aspiring comedians finding themselves a home and chance to go viral on sites like Funny or Die and Crackle. For the Mapping Memories project, we decided to use because of the ease with which it allowed us to export multiple video file formats. There's likely a video solution for everyone, it's just a matter of choosing the service and community that will best serve your content. Of course, that's as long as your not too concerned with sharing some of your rights to the content with the hosting provider. But that's another topic for another post...