Viewfinder: Thank You Steve Jobs


Business is good here. There have never been more people interested in editing video. For the past few years, the annual camcorder sales volume has consistently been above three million, and, as we all know, the economy has been incredibly hot. People are buying all types of things that they’ve never purchased before, and this has helped our business. However, I think that there is one man to thank for this sudden interest in video editing and that is Steven Jobs of Apple Computer.

I must admit, when I first heard about Apple’s plans to configure their computers for video editing, I was skeptical. Were they just attempting to cash in on a fad? I had doubts about Apple embracing a long-term commitment to video editing. Clearly I was incorrect.

Steve Jobs has spent millions of dollars in advertising for the DV iMac with iMovie and the G3 Mac with Final Cut Pro. The ads are all over the place. I’ve seen TV commercials and two page ads in Newsweek for these video-editing Apple products. It seems as though Mr. Jobs has chosen the singular computer application of editing video as the focus of his ad campaign, and it appears to be working. A short time ago, Apple Computer wasn’t doing very well. Now that Mr. Jobs is again the CEO of Apple Computer, things seem to be going great guns. He is a brilliant marketer. He knows that video editing is exciting and that many people would like to do this on home computers.

The DV iMac is competitively priced with other turnkey editing appliances from Draco and Applied Magic. Though the iMac is not made to put out the quality of video these appliances do, people are coming to see it as a computer that you get free when you buy it as a video editing device. Still, I’d expect the appliances themselves should be selling better as a result of the increasing popularity of video editing that has come from Apple’s advertising campaign. Millions of people have entered our market because Apple has told them that video editing is fun, easy and achievable at home. Many people have a little part of them that wants to be a movie maker. Steven Jobs has hit upon this as a trigger point for people to buy their computers. In selling iMacs, he is selling people on making video. This has been the largest ad campaign in the history of tools for video editing.

Our advertising page sales are increasing dramatically. More people are attending Videomaker Expos, and our mailboxes have never been more full with subscription cards from new customers. There is no doubt that a major change is in the works.

I have been working towards this for over a dozen years. We have always felt that making video is fulfilling and enjoyable for the amateur or novice. We have felt that video production belongs in the hands of the people. We have also realized that many businesses could benefit from making their own, low-budget video productions.

Video is a great communications media. Anyone with a message to communicate should consider how he might use video to better disseminate information. Microsoft may be learning this lesson also. Their latest update of Windows 98 includes a video editing software application. This can only help to further popularize the pursuit of video editing by newcomers to the craft.

As the publisher of a magazine that encourages camcorder users to become video editors, I want to personally thank Steve Jobs for all that he has done to promote the vision of video for the masses. He has hit upon the ripe video editing market to promote the new Apple iMac; the result has been an explosion of interest in making video. Not only is business good for us, but more and more people are becoming empowered to tell their own stories through the medium of video.

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