Today is a special day in the history of the universe. On this day, more people are making video than ever before. That’s right, yesterday there were less people making video than today. While camcorder sales may have leveled off a bit, the sale of video editing tools is at an all time high. And now, the possibilities in sharing videos are explosive. A new report from In-Stat indicates that 13 million videos were shared on the Internet in 2005. By 2010 this number is expected to climb to 131 million. When added to the video sharing by way of DVDs, broadcast, or satellite TV worldwide, the number is astounding.
But tomorrow is another day. And today’s record will be quickly forgotten because even more people will be sharing video tomorrow. While I have no studies to refer to, it is easy to imagine that the numbers of people discovering the power and joy of video production will escalate for years and perhaps decades. This inspires me to ponder exactly why people are attracted to making video. We all know the pragmatic reasons like it is an excellent way to communicate, it generates sales or it makes us money. However, I wanted to explore some of the more emotionally interesting aspects of making video.
One interesting trait of video is its permanence. It lasts longer than building a snowman, a car or even a house. Most of us presume that the electronics that enable our video to be stored will be well taken care of for the remainder of history. Someone, somehow will continually transfer our videos from an aging format to the newest and most modern. Most of us have already transferred some stuff from 8mm film to VHS and then again to DVD and perhaps to an online sharing site. When we make video, there’s a certain part of us that becomes immortal. Video allows us to etch our mark on the world.
Compared to creating things like text, video is much more vivid and compelling. The letters and words that I am using in this sentence require parts of your brain to weave them together to assist you in knowing what I was thinking when I wrote it. Text is quite abstract, requiring an extensive use of imagination. Video, on the other hand, is explicit. Video includes the minute changes in the tones of people’s voices, which help understand the emotions of the speaker, likewise by facial expressions. However, all of this pales compared to how effective video communicates some concepts like the inflation of a hot air balloon or a fiery explosion. Video is an explicit medium, more effective than another.
In closing, video is penetrative. Video gets to the heart of many households. It gets into the living room of millions of people’s homes. Video is not stuck in one place. It is highly transferable and now more portable than ever. Making video is important.
These are some of the many reasons why we are fulfilled making video.
Matthew York is Videomaker’s Publisher/Editor.