Innovative use of video in blogging

Posted on April 7, 2009 by

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Ok, this is crazy, but I’m, more or less triple posting on this subject. 1) I dropped a comment over at Michael Aubrecht’s blog about the integration of the video into his post of April 6 (yesterday)… then I… 2) made a comment on my digital rhetoric class blog about the same. Now… 3) I’m going to say something here. I’m not so much focused on the meaning of the blog post in terms of the Civil War, but I’m looking at it with my “technical communicator” hat on today. Michael’s done something pretty cool in advancing the interaction between the reader and himself. He hasn’t simply pointed us to a YouTube video, he has integrated it into his presentation, and the way that it is used, gives a feeling of “interaction” between the blogger and the reader. Without writing a new set of comments here about what I took from viewing the video, I’ll repeat what I said over there in a comment, here.

Very interesting integration of “self” into the blog. I think it’s particularly intriguing the way that it brings the reader closer to “you” in a more personal manner (they are “in” your car, no less). It’s no longer just your words or use of imagery that engages the reader, but the humanization element of the video. This is personalization on an entirely different level. The only downside to this is that the reader has no means to interact with and become a writer (as opposed to the read-write sense of the blog as an element of Web 2.0) in the video. It seems that there should be a way to work something into that, but the limitations are actually with what a person can do with YouTube in this respect.

That said however, I think I was actually feeling motion sickness watching the video. I’ll have to look into that one, but it might be the size of the screen or the limitations of the camera to deal with the “bouncing” effect of the visual. Otherwise, I wonder if the video was too long. Good suspense element, but not sure about the length.

On another note, he’s touched on something else that is pretty interesting… especially for one who has an interest in the use of interpretive markers. With this in mind, I said…

you’ve touched on something else that intrigues me; that we as “Civil War people” have come to automatically assume that markers that have the Civil War Trails marker look are, in fact, Civil War markers. I wonder if everyone else does the same or if it is only those (beyond us “Civil War people”) people who have learned to assume that the shape and look of these markers means that the marker must be a Civil War Trails sign. I may have lost this automatic mechanism within me because I have seen my fair share of non Civil War signs that have the same look.

All-in-all, he’s done something pretty cool by using another medium in this environment! Yet, because I have become a “creature of Web 2.0,” the only thing that kind of disappoints me is the limitations that the YouTube video impose on the reader… and, of course, the feeling of motion sickness. The video is one-way presentation. I wonder if there is a way in which it can be turned into a two-way opportunity, the “interaction” being more than just the reader clicking on the “start video” button.

I didn’t embed the video here, because, by doing so, you won’t get an appreciation for the manner in which Michael, as the blogger, has integrated the video into his “presentation.” Click here for a view of the blog post. Regretfully, his format doesn’t permit me to link directly to his post of April 6, 2009, so you have to look for that particular post for that date. The link that I provide is simply one to his blogsite.

*I’ve actually been looking over the Roxio video editing software, as I’d like to refine my video presentations. Of course, I’d also like to get a decent video recorder that doesn’t sink me for too much money.

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