11-19: YouTube

Video Hosts

What is YouTube?

YouTube is a video hosting and sharing site – in other words, it’s a place where you can upload videos you’ve made for the world to see. While, like pretty much every other thing we’ve looked at so far, it’s not the only such service out there, it is certainly the largest, and is one of the most visited sites on the web. Every minute, over 24 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube and every day an audience of tens of millions watches billions of clips.  The quality of material available continues to improve as time goes by. Once upon a time YouTube videos were all grainy, blurry little 10-minute things due to file size and format limitations; today you can watch entire tv shows in High Definition.

Here’s a nifty infographic compiled by Website Monitoring that should give you an idea of the sheer scope of YouTube and its history.

 

As mentioned previously, there are several alternatives to YouTube out there, though none can hope to compete with its market share at the moment. A service worth looking at, however, is Vimeo, which has a non-commercial requirement that makes it appealing to educators.

Why should I use it?

YouTube (and other video sharing sites) is a quick and (relatively) painless ways of getting your AV content out onto the web, without having worry about things like hosting, bandwidth or upload quotas. As you’ve no doubt found out for yourselves on previous occasions, YouTube is often used as a discovery tool; it’s right up there with Wikipedia when people need to know how to do something, and it’s a great place to go to learn how to do anything from creating flash animation to fly fishing.

To Complete Thing 19

  1. Sign up for a YouTube account. Since you already have a google account for your gmail and google reader, you can skip some of the sign-up steps by clicking on ‘sign in rather than ‘create account’.
  2. Upload a video of your own, or download another public domain video and then upload it to your account.
  3. Embed the video in your blog.
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