You’ve Got VideoHow to Share Video Online
By David Broadfoot
Video streaming, the technology that allows you to watch a video clip over the Internet without having to download the entire media file, has been with us for a while, but without a fast Internet connection, it just wasn’t that fun. Now, however, the Internet is a much more responsive place than it used to be; official stats show that more than half of all households now have a fast Internet connection (DSL or better), as opposed to dial-up. More and more people are using their computers to watch – and even make – movies.
If you have video footage on your computer that you would like to share with the world (or just your Aunt Ethel), you can make use of the same streaming technology. Maybe you managed to capture some hilarious footage on your camera phone – or you used your camcorder to record a family party. Perhaps you’ve edited together a montage of your favorite Cleveland Browns touchdowns (a short film, I’ll grant you). By uploading your files to a suitable video-sharing Web site, visitors to the site with a fast Internet connection can enjoy your handiwork as a real-time stream without having to wait for anything to download.
But which sharing site is right for you?
The most important questions to ask at this point are “Who do you want to share with?” and “How many bells and whistles would you like with your upload?”
If you’re only looking to share with close friends and family, a site such as vimeo.com may be for you. Uploading files is a single-click operation, and once you have created a user account, others can view your video only by invitation.
If, on the other hand, you not only want to share your clips with the world but also get some feedback from the online community, something like youtube.com is the place to go. Sites like this are great fun; there is the potential for hundreds of thousands of people to see your video, and you probably will make new friends along the way. Be warned: By uploading files to some sites like this – youtube.com included – you are effectively relinquishing ownership of your video. It really is “out there” at this point!
For those in search of something a little more technical, a site such as jumpcut.com would be worth a visit. Not only can you upload video clips, but there’s a slick online editing interface for adding a soundtrack, effects and all manner of other cool stuff. If you’re looking to link back to your own video on your blog or personal Web site, a site like this can make the process much easier.