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IAC-owned online video hosting service Vimeo has announced that they will begin to remove source video files. The removal will take place beginning on August 1st. The source files will be stored for a week and then removed. Apparently storing huge video files costs money – can you believe it?!?
If you upgrade to a Vimeo Plus account, the source files will be stored as long as you are a pro member. Vimeo notes that they will continue to store the MP4 file that is used in the video player. A Vimeo Plus subscription is $60/year.
From the Vimeo announcement, “Please understand that this is not a devious scheme to force you to upgrade to Plus. This was a hard decision to make, but we make these changes to ensure Vimeo’s longevity so that you *can* use it for free.”
I wanted to see what the policy is regarding storing source files at another popular video hosting service so I spoke with Viddler’s technology evangelist Colin Devroe. Colin noted, “Our current and past policy has always been to keep original sources for as long as an account is active. We’ve recently begun to either delete, or archive, videos from accounts that haven’t had any activity in as long as a year – to help reduce costs. Although our policy may change in the future, we’re confident that we can keep original sources for as long as an account is active rather than for a specific duration after upload.”
NY-based video sharing service Vimeo has announced the launch of Vimeo Plus today. Vimeo Plus is a paid service that offers additional benefits over the free service. NewTeeVee has a good overview of all of the features of Vimeo Plus which include: $59.95/yr, no ads, more uploads per week, priority uploading and some HD features.
Rick Turoczy at RWW wonders if Vimeo can convert their loyal users into paying customers. He points to Flickr as an example although he says that $60/yr is "nominal" – I’d say up to $30 is nominal, over that is a much bigger buying decision. I do think this is an excellent test for the overall industry.
Viddler has introduced a number of new features that they could have charged a small amount for.
I hope Vimeo has included a Plus badge – I still believe that there is a social factor with badges – you don’t want to be the only one in your circle without the Flickr Pro badge.
Vimeo Toys is launching with two apps: Vimeo Land and Pulse. To engage the Vimeo community with Toys, the Vimeo staff is asking users to create applications using Vimeo Toys. They will highlight the best apps on the Vimeo homepage as well. What a smart idea to get new users engaged with the service and loyal users to build on top of the service.
It’s always great to see companies promoting discovery without it being a popularity contest to be featured. Check out all of our Vimeo coverage.
Update: Corvida has a good review of Vimeo Toys as well.
As I create more videos and have more discussions with online video talent, the conversation seems to move many times to finding the optimum hosting and distribution structure for video. I want to make sure my viewers never hit a dead end and can easily find other videos to view from the series. Since at least half of my videos are business-oriented, the idea of putting them on YouTube and hoping for the "viral effect" is not attractive. Earlier this year I wrote about the online video market here in NYC and I see it continuing to expand today.
Currently I am using Viddler almost exclusively for my videos. I like Viddler because their player allows for in-stream commenting and their upload function is easy-to-use. I find the uploading function on YouTube to be absolute crap, can’t they even offer an upload status bar?!? For the purposes of this discussion, we will only discuss pre-recorded video content and not live services (Mogulus, Ustream) or mobile video streaming (Kyte, Qik, Flixwagon).
I get the idea behind services like TubeMogul which put your content everywhere and I will probably look at doing this as well. But it’s critical from my standpoint that you select a video sharing/hosting partner to work with in which you can build your video brand. This means that the player that’s used on the video creator’s site remain consistent over time. Some video content creators are being paid to use services and I see this trend continuing as the video creation market expands and hosting networks fight to get out of the commodity business.
There are a number of indie video stars on the scene today. I’ve selected Justine and Gary Vaynerchuk to use as examples with regards to how they use various video hosting networks for their videos and shows. When I check out Justine’s Web site, she seems to use YouTube as her first choice and it’s clear that this strategy has helped her with growing her brand. Justine has over 18,000 subscribers on YouTube. These subscribers drive massive views to her videos. She uses Viddler as well for some videos and all of her videos are distributed there as well. Gary Vaynerchuk at WineLibraryTV uses Viddler for the main player on the site. Gary also has a distribution deal with Revision3 which publishes a shorter wine show on Revision3 and other video hosting providers including YouTube.
There are more options than ever for video hosting – from the most basic YouTube through working with distribution partners like ForYourImagination who can produce, record and package the shows. Viddler, Vimeo, Veoh all sit in the middle and I’d consider blip.tv a "show" distributor.
Below is the setup I have been considering for the videos I create on CN. My goal is to find the best combination of:
- reaching the largest audience
- using the best technology
- using a player with good usability for the viewer
- outside distribution to as many sources as possible
- tracking and analytics
- ability to monetize the videos over time — either with cpm views or finding a sponsor
These are videos I shoot of product demos and also include our interviews like the one we shot with Dina Kaplan last week. I am looking at using blip.tv for these videos. blip.tv can offer me a gallery player to allow viewers to watch any video they like. blip.tv also has an advertising network and also works with shows to find sponsors. This is very attractive to me – especially in the beginning. blip.tv will also distribute the shows to iTunes which could work relatively well for creating loyal viewers.
These videos include the Twitter Song and How to Effectively Quit Blogging. I see continuing to post these videos on Viddler because the interactivity and community there is a perfect fit for these videos.
I’d love some feedback on my thoughts and suggested video network usage for CN. What am I missing in creating the right mix? The next mission is to get a better video setup and move away from my tiny Canon Elph to something a bit more professional.
Editor’s note: I am not paid (nor have I been) for using any video service to-date.
NY-based video sharing service Vimeo has decided to no longer allow video game videos. In an announcement made yesterday on the Vimeo company blog, Blake Whitman noted that new videos will be removed and current videos are subject to deletion after September 1st.
Blake explains that there are two main reasons for the change. First, Vimeo is about creative expression and copying a video game isn’t creative expression. Second, the game videos are larger and longer than most other videos which causes their transcoder to push long wait times for other Vimeo members. I’ve noticed this wait on Viddler as well and from what I understand on Viddler it has to do with non-U.S. show content.
There are nearly 500 replies on the Vimeo blog discussing the change – most are for the change. Apparently YouTube also bans these type of video game videos. The big question in the forums is what specific videos will be deleted and which will remain. Apparently it will have a lot to do with what the staff call "creative merit".
Check out our look at the NY online video scene – it might just be our greatest asset.
StumbleUpon is announcing a variety of new partnerships today with regards to their StumbleVideo product. StumbleVideo allows you to thumb up or down a video and then get presented with another one, and another, and so on. Each time you rate a video, the system becomes more intelligent about the videos you like and dislike. Over time StumbleVideo presents you videos that you are likely to be interested in.
The new video partners are: College Humor, Funny or Die, Vimeo, Dailymotion, veoh.com and vbs.tv.Previously StumbleVideo only offered content from YouTube, Google Video, MySpace Video and Metacafe. These new partnerships should provide a nice life in viewed videos for the new partners and for the content creators behind the videos.
comScore is out with their latest online video report for March 2008 covering U.S. Internet users. YouTube continues to lead the pack and represents 98% of all videos in the Google Sites category. Tell me again why they keep Google Video around? It’s seems Google abandoned it when they acquired YouTube.
Google moved up another 2.6 share points to 38% of all videos watched. The real telling statistic is that YouTube visitors watched an average of 50 videos each over the month. No one else comes close to this in the lead pack as Microsoft Sites comes in second with nearly 10 videos per user. More videos per user mean more ability and options to monetize over the session. In total videos watched, Fox Interactive came in second followed by Yahoo Sites, Viacom Digital and Microsoft Sites.
Another juicy bit in the report is that the average online video viewer watched 235 minutes of video. Wow. And with live video slowly taking off, this number will only continue to increase.
| Top U.S. Online Video Properties* by Unique Viewers
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore Video Metrix
|Property|| Unique Viewers
| Average Videos
|Fox Interactive Media||54,294||8.8|
|Time Warner – Excl. AOL||22,366||7.1|
*Rankings based on video content sites; excludes video server networks. Online video includes both streaming and progressive download video.