Why Video?

While Rembering the value of face to face I mentioned the use of video as possible option, for virtual meetings etc.

These days video recording devices are generally more accessible (cheaper and easier to use) and video is increasingly being created and used by ‘lay people’. Just about anyone with access to some recording equipment can create a short video, from the comfort of their own desk or while out and about at a conference or meeting. Video has great potential for us remote workers and I wanted to have a think out loud about why we should and how we could use video more.

Anyway here is an actual bit of footage for you to see! It’s me talking about ‘why video?’. I created it using my Logitech quickcam Webcam. It took me about 5 minutes to make and 10 minutes to upload to Vimeo.

Just in case you can’t watch the video the key points I make for ‘why video’ are:

Amplifying a Conference
Recording a talk or videoing a presentation can allow the content to be amplified. Amplified conference is a term coined by Lorcan Dempsey (former director of UKOLN) in a blog post in 2008. The idea is that the conference outputs (including ppts and video and audio recordings of speakers) can be amplified in order to extend the reach of the conference using networked technologies. This amplification takes place across time and space.

Reaching a Wider Audience
As video resources can stretch across time and space people who can’t be at a particular event can now still engage with it. This is particularly useful for remote workers and those who live geographically a long way away from where events are taking place. No need for time travel, people can now be in two places at once! We video staff seminars here at UKOLN and people who are out on the day they take place can also enjoy them.

Giving People a Visual Perspective
Most of us like to “see” something as well us just “read” it. Some people also learn more from visual content. In marketing speak video can be used to “enhance the consumer experience”. It gives a different dimension to blogs and Web sites and it gives you, the creator, a voice and face. It can also help you connect better with your audience. A short video can potentially be worth a thousand words or ppt slides. Why not try interviewing people, making a short documentary, demonstrating how to do something online, creating a response piece, have a go, experiment!

Video Conferencing
If people can’t be somewhere then video is the next best thing. It can be used in virtual meetings and conferences, it saves money on travel and is of course much more environmentally friendly. I hope to be looking at video conferencing more in the future (thanks to Owen Stephens for the suggestions).

If you are going to create video then think about allowing people to reuse your video. Share it. Put it on YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, etc. Put a creative commons licences on it. But also be wise to copyright – if you’re going to use a pop song for your soundtrack there may be issues!

I found the See3 guide to online video really useful – it has some easy to follow tips for getting started.

At UKOLN we are trying to create and use video more. We have recently purchased a new compact digital camera, a digital video camera with microphone, a Flip camera and a digital sound recorder. More on those soon…