Sunday, May 24, 2009

Video on the Web

YouTube, MSN Video, YahooVideo, Google Video, AOL Video and Flickr, are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to options for displaying your productions on the web. In addition to simply “showing” your videos there are resources to help you create, format, upload, display, organize, distribute, advertise...

...even monetize and edit - all on the web, some from your web site others hosted, some free, others for a donation or for pay, all the time. The premium runs from free & cheap to affordable & expensive. Many, many of these options are so simple even I can do it - and that, dear readers, is saying a lot.

As you know from reading my previous post I am in the process of gathering up sample clips, organizing them to reflect the wide diversification of my available services, improving their presentation, content and quality - and attempting to update all this content in an easy-to-find, easy-to-view approach. I'm not “there” yet, but I AM working on it. Part of that process has been researching the many “options" and that, in turn, has led to this article offering links to a huge variety of web video sharing resources.

Here’s what I have discovered in no particular order or preference: Many of you have heard of some of these, while others may not realize there’s much beyond YouTube. At any rate, I'll post what I have and you can take it from there. Comments welcome.

While YouTube is arguably the Big Daddy of video hosting sites, places like BlipTV, Vimeo, Atom Uploads, and Revver have offered viable alternatives. Preferable, actually, for many. Revver also offers its users the opportunity to “monetize” their videos, as does Google Video.

So does Youreeeka, a company now advertising a “patent-pending technology (that) enables you to maximize revenues distributing digital content online directly to your viewers.” With that in mind, you also do not have to invest a lot of money into services like this, as Michael Wright, of Windy Hills Video, North California, discovered recently. No, don’t ask, just check out FaceBook, Twitter and a few other PVN sites such as WedVidPro - the guru of new appliance discoveries has posted it just about everywhere.

First Western Digital’s HDTV player system, now this new gadget - what are you going to discover next, Michael? Guys like Michael Wright, and Jay Michael, are two of many who stay on top of new technology, and share their knowledge and discoveries regarding all things video. By the way, Jay says ning.com is cool, and I have to agree.

Added note: Another reader, Shane, noted that I left out Film Rookie. After his comment mentioning FR I visited and liked what I saw - to the extent that I immediately joined and uploaded a test clip. After HOURS of uploading, and being told the upload was successful, NADA. No clip to be found anywhere! I also attempted twice to contact FR via its "report" form and both times it failed to authorize clearance using the code I carefully entered. Like I said elsewhere, I'll try again when I have some more time to waste.

Speaking of Twitter, the micro-blogging site that is gaining eyeballs by the tankers full. The site can help after you’ve posted your clips elsewhere. Look at adjix.com where the site says short links and tiny ads can generate a “big payoff.” This thing inserts into individual updates and you can get paid based on impressions and clicks. Also, if you don’t know already, check out Cligs, ShortURL.com or BudURL.com - all sites that help you cut down on those lengthy URLs for Twitter posts. They also include reports you can use in assessing your content’s effectiveness.

In addition to FB & Twitter, there are other social sharing sites that might help you in some way. Again, a lot of you know about them, but if you don’t, take a look at Digg.com and Mixx.com - expand your horizons, readers!

Getting back to web video options, marketing, posting, advertising and distributing. Once you have joined such sites as GoogleVideo, Revver, BlipTV, YouTube and others, you have got to check out Tube Mogul where you can upload to all these sites in one shot. Tube Mogul also has tools that help you track which sites are getting more eyeballs.

I read in another place where YouTube is soon to introduce live streaming. Visit this link to see what that’s all about. But the perennial web video hosting site is a bit late to the game when you consider iTunes possibilities, as well as U Stream, and a host of others. For those who have produced commercial/creative or art video productions, and are looking for ways to advertise, distribute and sell using the social sharing networks like FaceBook and Twitter, along with Film Specific, Brave New Theaters, even Amazon or Film Baby, the last two offering order fulfillment, can possibly discover a way to recoup costs, break even or even make money selling their productions.

While many of the above, and those I will soon mention in this article, range from little or no costs, to fairly expensive, I at least want you to know the range of options at your disposal. I will be experimenting with these and others I find along the way, en route to my own web site video sharing goals, including the use of Michael’s recent appliance “discovery.”

Here are a bunch more options, choices, and brief comments regarding some of them, and other places you can go to see what’s out there in terms of making and sharing your video clips. Sites that could make possible marketing, distribution and monetizing efforts that work the way you want them to.

Fliqz web site claims it helps you to “harness the power of video” tracking each viewing and providing reports with useful information. Amazon’s Create Space assists you in uploading your creative content and getting it listed as a regular title. This can make your production (not just video) available to millions who stay connected with the powerhouse company.

In addition to standard definition content, places like YouTube, Vimeo and even FaceBook now provide for high definition. Others as well. But keep in mind that YouTube currently has a 10-minute limit on clip length. You have options elsewhere to pay more, or less, or nothing. Each has its own rules regarding what you can or cannot show. Many of them hold the line at porno (nobody here doing any of that, right?), guard vigorously against copyright infringement, or react if somebody reports an infringement to them. Others are mildly non-reactive, even lethargic.

For content enhancement check out Yanobox Motype for text animation, Red Giant Software’s Trapcode Suite or even Digital Juice.

More streaming services are available at Telestream’s WireCast. There’s also Justin TV. You should at least visit Stream Hoster. There’s also Clip Stream, but it is currently only for Windows. I don’t know about Reel Time but it might offer something of interest. Mogulus is worth a look-see - also known as Live Stream or Live Stream Pro.

Don’t shut down your computer without also looking at imeem, jibjab (remember them?), Pandora TV, VidiLife (not really ALL that good, but) Zippy Video, Zoopy and Eye Spot also is pixelfish. Grouper is now Crackle, but still in business, as is OurMedia.org, and there’s V Social, but it currently can only create 320x240 video rolls.

There’s Bright Cove, Tangle.com, Gubb.TV, DropShots and Big Contact. The Clip Shack, Daily Motion, Myubo (a wireless 2.5G/3G upload site).

You’ve got FlickLife, but I’ve got to warn you it is full of totally raunchy stuff that might detract from your wholesome production clips’ contents. Live Video also sports some raunchy content.

There’s flukiest, and GoFish (now for 13 and under) is now pitching betawave.com as an alternative. Kewego is there, if you understand German. You do have an English option, however. Look at Self Cast TV, Tuberoo and Shout Wire, Viddler, Video Egg and UVouch.

Motion Box and Dabble were/are in development stages and may, or not yet, be publicly available. You should look at Cast Post, Bolt, DiviCast and Blinkx. If you haven’t yet gone loopy with all these sites, try Glide Digital, Loomie, Mefeedia, Pop Cast, Photo Bucket, Break, Buzz Net and Gawkk.

Alas, Jump Cut, offering an easy large window experience will soon be no mas, discontinuing service as of June 15, 2009.

Let’s see...
...I’m going to check out Veeple.com and Vzaar.com for myself, so you might want to look there as well. Check out BoinxTV’s software solutions.

I will leave you with these, hoping that in your spare time :-) you will find the desire to check out a few, or all, maybe even comment upon them here or elsewhere. Until then, I am busy working on the options for my own web site(s) clip updates and revisions using some of what I have discovered among the possibilities.

Remember: If You Market, You Will Make It! © Earl Chessher

6 comments:

Shane said...

One that you left out is FilmRookie.com - they have a model where you're automatically qualified for money from ad revenues based on how many people view your videos.

I've only been on a few days, so I can't say how well it works, but it seems to be attracting a lot of disgruntled YouTubers.

CorElAnn said...

Well, Shane, went to FilmRookie, liked what I read, saw and heard. Was enthused, so I joined and uploaded a test clip - took a LOOOOOOng time to do it, and I was told it was successful, but when I went back to view the results - NADA! No video clip to be found.

Tried twice to send a message via the error report form only to do it twice and twice have the validation code I typed in rejected. No third time for me. Maybe I'll take another look after I find some MORE time to waste.

adamkaz said...

Earl,

What a fantastic resource you are. I am a photographer slightly delving into videography with the 5d mk II, and in searching for good video editing PC specs, I came across videomaker.com. Thanks for all you share.

Shaw Productions Inc. said...

Eyespot is also pixelfish? Wow now there is a "sore spot" for me. We had done many shoots for pixelfish and finally after several months of not getting paid I had to threaten with lawsuit. Shooters beware of this company! If you google search "pixelfish + yellowbook" you will see all the other shooters blogging about not getting paid by them.

AlanTaylor925 said...

An interesting article on web distribution. I have been experimenting with various websites trying to expose my work as closely as possible. I tend to aim for the best sites which also offer ad revenue as in the long term, the aim is to create revenue. Many sites are failing at this currently but alot has changed since 2006 when I first became aware of online video. This has been the first year I've really spent time putting my efforts into understanding the ebst places to promote your work and also create audiences. I aim for a world market for online content as like the internet, anyone can access the content. I like youtube as you have the ability to can use the video url and place it on many other video sites without having to experience the upload time each time a new video is placed online. This is a problem itself and Tube Mogul helps a great deal but remember that this only includes 10 or more sites. The other main site is traffic geyser but the charges are high and for an independent producer starting out in their first year of business, there is a barrier of costs involved. A better system would be for the distribution company to receive a percentage of any revenue made on a video that is distributed using their service, surely this would work. If it works for an individual site, why not for a large syndication company. It seems like lost business and clients for them.

A site which I have been very impressed with which is still in Beta although works a treat currently is openfilm.com; I rate this as the second best video site I have used only second to Blip.TV. OpenFilm provides ad revenue at 50%. What I really like about this site is that you get the feeling, they care about their content creators and through their manual human review, the quality includes semi-pro to professional users. This is ideal for the majority of independent filmmakers or should I say content creators as digital video is the medium. I've been online for about two months and have made 78p or $1.29 dollars. Although this is a tiny amount, it shows that the system works well. So far in 2009, I have had 80,000 views which is a great personal achievement but I know all too well that these are only numbers and the ones I care about are the people who work with me and come back for more. I've found that only 2,000 of these views feature advertising which brings me back to my point of the video companies failing to attach advertising on videos. Lets just say that the average 2,000 views created a dollar, with 80,000 you are talking about 40 dollars instead of one, that's a huge difference. What would happen if say the famous Fred on youtube had 1,000,000 views with revenue generating 500 dollars when his total viewership could be 10,000,000, he would be at a loss of 4,500 pounds. I see this problem being resolved in the next stage of the development of video sharing sites with the ones featuring ad sharing surviving while others being forced to close down.

AlanTaylor925 said...

part 2:

I have a response to FilmRookie.com, this is a bad site, I uploaded a video which failed a number of times and they are also to feature ads, nope nothing at all and guess what; 0.00 revenue. Their technical support is truly awful too. I have sent a few emails off and yet to receive a reply at four or five weeks in. I sent a personal message to one of the admins who replied saying that they have been having a busy week and they WOULD get back to me. Five weeks have gone and I haven't heard a peek from them. I get the impression that there are only a small number of people working here and it fails as a site. Lets hope they get their act together or they will not stand a chance with youtube which I think could make more money if they attacked ads to everyone's video. I believe the other problem is of course with advertisers wanting to target specific audience groups hence why they select the most popular channels. There is a scramble for market share and the struggle for independents is trying to break through and create an audience for yourself now when many people are already established.

Finally, a word of praise for Blip.TV. They have had a reputation for being the best video sharing site for a while but I found their site to be slow, making the experience a let down. I'm excited to report that Blip.TV has just released live now their new dashboard and the site as a whole is much faster and now takes it's place as my fav video sharing site, I've also noticed an increase in views since the changeover so if your not set up on there, check it out now.
Below, I've listed a few of my personal picks for video sharing sites which I like the feel of and recommend to anyone else:

OpenFilm.com – 50% Ad Revenue
Clipta – Pay Per Uploaded Video
Blip.TV – 50% Ad Revenue
BigStar.TV – Competitions and Nicely Designed Site
Revver – Slow, don't recommend it, haven't made any revenue for months

There are hundreds of sites out there, I'm in the process of researching which ones to show my content on and for you, just google them and look at forums, there are just so many. At the moment, I have selected 30 of my top content videos and I have distributed them across 20 video sharing sites and 18 video embed sites. A last tip is to never take your video down once it's up. My belief is that if there is an audience for your content then it has a better chance of flourishing the more people can see it.

Good luck,

Alan