Last week I received the book Web-tv written by Bob Timroff. The Dutch book describes everything you ever wanted to know about publishing video or videoblogs on the web. From copyrights to video formats to aggregators, everything. Hypernarrative.com (videoblog.hypernarrative.com) and my graduation project Medialandschap.nl are featured in the book as well.
A video is personal
It is more personal than text and even more personal than a picture. If you record video with your webcam or your mobile phone and you are in it you are broadcasting yourself.
Not only your thoughts (blog), not just your voice (podcast) or your esthetic moments (photo blog). You are broadcasting your mimics, how you move, how you talk, how you look.
By default we seem to be afraid to see ourself on video. It’s like watching a 3d mirror with a delay. You notice every little thing. Things you don’t always like about yourself. After a while you get used to this and it matters less.
The video blog, or the option to easily share ‘personal’ video is a new form of personal expression made public. More personal and more direct. We have to get used to this. Video feels very strong connected to privacy.
Video was always a very scarce medium. You needed access to movies or television and you needed to have message or idea. Television had to be interesting to be broadcasted. This does not longer exist.
Social networks are changing how we think about privacy. Privacy is retreating actively from the web, in other words privacy is not signing in to your profiles or comment on your virtual hideouts.
If you act in public spaces off- and online you will end up somewhere on the web, probably without knowing. This could be party pictures, your MySpace profile or a videoblog you make.
Seesmic is a service by Loïc Le Meur that tries to convert the conversation into video. Make video comments instead of text. It’s an interesting idea, I don’t know if it will always work, but I think this is the time for it. We are making a cultural shift. We’re less afraid to publish video featuring ourselves talking directly into a webcam and use video to give our personal opinion.
This poses new problems of course. Video is difficult for scanning by humans and by computers. How do you find the things that matter most without watching hours of (sometimes irrelevant/funny) comments.
The videoblog still exists. Only it’s a format for structural video. Like programs on television. The production is often far less professional than television, but there is some structure.
The large amount of video that is coming to the web has no structure at all, it will be thoughts and comments that have no meaning without the right context. And I think this is great. It makes the web a more personal space and this is the next step to a more immersive online experience.