Why I hate video.

I’ve been thinking – I have been to many workshops, blogging seminars and various other places regarding “Web 2.0…..” First, is there such a thing as Web 2.0? When did we have web 1.0? Web .01? It seems to me, many are just struggling to define something so they can say they’re proficient in it. How about saying, “Internets, I have it?” Sorry, that must be too complicated.

Which brings me to my previous point, sorry for the sudden left turn…. Videos on your blog, Videos in your email, Videos are the next great thing? I wholeheartedly disagree. Here’s why:

I have a short attention span.
When I am at my computer, I’m usually doing four or five different things at once. When I click on your webpage, I can read it at my own pace, in my own time. If it’s just a video, you’re asking me to stop when I’m doing and focus all my attention on you. It better be worth it.

Uh. Um. Oh. Ah. Uh. Oh. Um.
I catch every vocal pause in your sentences… And I judge you for it. If you’re not confident in what you’re saying, how do you expect me to be comfortable with you as an expert?

Stop looking at me
If I’m watching you, watching me, watching you, I’m watching where your eyes are going, if they’re staring into the camera, I’m a little unnerved. If you’re looking off screen, I want to know what you’re looking at. I’m curious. What ARE you looking at?

awkward statue
(Used under creative commons, thank you SoStark!!)

Take a breath once in a while
I can tell when you’re trying to say everything all at once. Take a breath every once in a while. The video is already awkward, so a pause every now and then would not be uncharacteristic.

Hey! I like your: Office, Den, Living room, Car, Boat, Evil lair
As mentioned above, I’m creeped out by looking at you, looking at me, so I’m looking everywhere, but you. I’m looking at the pictures around you, the papers on your desk, the traffic driving by – Is it raining? – the open door – Did someone just walk by? – Oh, and when I’m doing that, I’m not listening to your message. I’m distracted and paying attention elsewhere.

Messy desks
(Used under creative commons, thank you JonRB)

Oh man, another video
Learning from the history of AOL member pages, Angelfire, or Geocites, if there is anything that is on autoplay on your site, including video, I’m clicking the red X as soon as I can find it. I’m usually listening to something in my own world when I’m at my computer: news, music, my mother on the phone, and I don’t need to hear your voice/music trying to compete.

For all the above reasons. Please stop forcing me to see your video, cause I’m already not watching. Put the effort into something I will pay attention to. Video is not the answer to all of the web’s problems.

Take a picture, I’ll look at it and it’ll last longer….

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17 responses to “Why I hate video.

  1. This. Times 5782943123485610216545465465.8.

    If I am actively seeking out video tutorials, for example, that’s one thing. But to force your crap to make noise on my computer…

    Ugh.

  2. I feel exactly the same way about videos. I hate watching them on the computer. My job entails staring at the computer screen all day long while I work, so videos just don’t entertain or inform me and really just irritate me in the end. I too prefer reading something at my leisure via blog or website. Good post!

  3. Exactly. Normally I just won’t click it. Though, it’s the latest thing nowadays to create a video blog… Yawn. I want to read, that’s why I’m a smarty… 🙂

  4. You assume all are readers. Some of us do not enjoy reading! I’d make an argument that anything longer than 200-300 words is a total waste because I won’t read it. The use of very short, concise videos can be very powerful and is able to convey much more personality and depth than any words or photos. I’ve had far more people comment and talk to me about the power of video on my blog than any words or photos I’ve shared (and I put photos in every single post).

    I do agree that far too many videos are horribly shot and composed. They ramble with no purpose and are often too long. KISS always works best. 🙂

    • Long or short video, I’m not watchin.. LOL

    • Conversely, this post was 506 words long. Not hard to read, not difficult to follow, and got a few comments. I call that a win.

      • At best I typically skim your posts. Once in a while you grab my attention enough to read (most) of the words. I would much rather you share these via video. This one caught my attention because I’m in the process of shooting a 10 session video tutorial on how to properly shoot video. How timely…

      • Which is a good thing that I’m not trying to sell anything but myself and my observations. But then again, that’s all we’re doing when we read anyways, skim. However, with video, you’re forcing me to “read/observe” at your pace. I don’t have that kind of time. 🙂

      • I must be unusual because I can skim peoples videos just as easily as I skim their written posts. Either medium without something I care about gets nothing but little to no attention.

    • But Dale, not all of us are as naturally adorable and photogenic as you! 🙂

  5. I do videos and then often have summaries or an secondary explanation of the point. It’s like a twitter vs facebook argument, it’s not one or the other, in the end be where people are. Some hate video, some love it, do both. On that note I am behind on both. 😦

  6. I don’t know that I’d go so far as to say that “I hate video,” but I’m one of the people who rarely clicks on video links. I’d much rather read a short well-written blog post any day of the week.

    But, like Dale said, everyone’s different.

    • Video makes me uncomfortable. I hate feeling uncomfortable, so I went that far. I surely could have used different words than hate, but I needed a catchy title. 🙂

  7. I hate doing video – I think they have a purpose – and I think you can hit the best of both worlds. An autoplay video should be outlawed for all the reasons you mention and more – many times when bored with the conversation on the phone I am looking at other things…. and when a video or music starts I am busted….

    I like to give the reader both options read or watch – like my mortgage expert section of my blog – every post has a video – the content is a recap of the video – I do not do the video – because I am not as cute as Dale either 🙂

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