Video for online – too much of a niche market?

‘Video for online’ is one of the NCTJ modules that my university’s chosen to make compulsory for us. Apart from giving us an excellent opportunity to bugger about with professional-level kit (just how far can you zoom in on someone’s nostril hairs before they notice?), I do think that, for non-broadcast hacks like yours truly, it’s a bit of a timewaster.

Lights, camera, nononomoveleftabit... - sea turtle, Flickr

Somewhere (and I can’t remember where!) I read earlier this week that local papers are ditching the idea of producing videos for their websites and sticking to the traditional photo and/or Google Maps mashup. The theory being, it’s better to be pounding your beat than it is to spend the entire day in the office producing a three minute video.

Given that local news isn’t taking up video, judging by the website of my local paper (the Uxbridge Gazette) and the quality papers like the Telegraph and the Guardian have made a very plain distinction between their written content and their multimedia content on their homepages, it seems that video just isn’t going to be the be-all and end-all that certain industry figures may have hoped for.

Before you accuse me of ignoring the TV sector, remember: I’m very much a print man at heart! In fact I quite like the sound of Jeremy Hunt’s announcements on the proposed new local TV channel – if only because it means more jobs – but I do question its commercial viability.

It goes a bit further than that, too: despite the popularity of the Kindle and Apple’s latest overpriced gimmick the iPad, and even in the face of declining newspaper circulation figures nationally, I just don’t think the written word will ever be less popular than the spoken or the pictorial.

After all, you’re reading this post…

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About Gaz Corfield

B2B reporter, editor, potential entrepreneur, consumer of quality beers.
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