Diversifying: Web Video Summit Offers Technique, Guidance

Posted on 11/15/2007 by Julia Dudnik Stern | Printable Version | Comments (0)

The proliferation of microstock, combined with a general overcrowding of the stock-image space, has resulted in many pro shooters seeing declining stock revenues and considering diversification. The video market is one option, for a number of creative and economic reasons.

As the Internet continues to usurp traditional media's popularity, most providers of creative services have expanded beyond print-only advertising, design and publishing projects. The stills and video buyer have become one in the same: today, an ad art director is buying an image for the client's direct-mail piece; tomorrow, he needs a clip for an online product promo. Consequently, the online video market spans the traditional still-image categories, from fine art and assignment to editorial and creative stock. It also goes beyond, into documentary narratives, music and fictional works.

From a business perspective, the online video space offers economic possibilities that may look attractive, compared to stagnating traditional stock. Internet experts forecast that the growth trend is going to continue well into the next decade. According to Video on the Internet, a recent analysis by Adams Media Research, advertiser spending on Internet video streams to PCs and TVs will approach $1.7 billion by 2011. Movie and TV downloads are predicted to generate $4.1 billion from the general consumer. The majority of new-media evangelists agree that rich, moving content is the future, and it will happen quickly.

The Roosevelt Hotel in New York will host Jupitermedia's Fall 2007 Web Video Summit, which offers an insider's view of this industry segment. The two-day program begins on Dec. 10 and includes sessions divided into two categories: business and technique/creative. The technique and creative track covers everything involved in shooting for the Web, including conceptualizing and storytelling; location scouting and casting; lights, cameras and sound; and encoding, compression and post-production.

Among the keynotes are familiar names: video-journalism pioneer Brian Conley, the founder of Alive in Baghad; Timothy Karr, director of FreePress; and John Borthwick, CEO of the 19th-largest Web site in the world, the photo-blogging leader Fotolog.

The summit also provides guidance and advice from working professionals. For the beginner, there is a practical introduction to shooting by Barry Braverman, videographer with feature-film experience and author of Video Shooter: Storytelling with DV, HD, and HDV Cameras. For those interested in photojournalism, Dailymotion's Joy Marcus and StreamingMedia.com's Dan Rayburn will discuss how the online properties of ABC TV, The New York Times and The Washington Post are competing on the quality of their video, not just their reporting.

Video is not the only opportunity for diversification. As Selling Stock has previously explored, expanding to video also has startup equipment costs and a learning curve. However, it may offer a still-stock photographer with an ailing business a creative outlet with more optimistic prospects.

During the recent conference of the Picture Archive Council of America, The Stock Asylum's Ron Rovtar, noted that microstock or overcrowding might not be affecting your business at the moment, but a smart business person always has a Plan B.

Copyright © 2007 Julia Dudnik Stern. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz


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