The advent of blogging was brought about by the synergy of free hosting services and widely available technology. A few years later, cheaper video cameras and video editing software were thrown into the mix and we saw the next step in blogging – video blogging.
Video blogs, shortly known as vlogs, are basically blogs whose content is primarily video. Aside from that variation in content, vlogs are functionally identical to their text-based predecessors.
As video recording equipment became more affordable and video editing software became more available, more people were willing to try vlogging. With decent video cameras starting at a couple of hundred dollars and the software for less than a hundred online, the field of digital video was opened up to just about anyone.
Casual users and previous bloggers saw vlogging as a new way to record their ideas and experiences online. Enthusiasts and non-professional filmmakers could now distribute their works across a wide international audience. To Steve Garfield, it was the next big thing.
The Vlog Man
Steve Garfield was one of the largest proponents of vlogging and is one of the first vloggers on the planet. He had seen videos posted on other sites and wondered if he could do the same on his mostly text blog. After some experimentation, he was able to make his first vlog entry on January 1, 2004 pronouncing that year as “The Year of the Video Blog.” He co-founded an online group dedicated to vlogging, the first of its kind.
Originals Not Required
Vlogging was seen as a new creative outlet for artists and amateurs the world over. One could start a vlog even without his own original video. Mash-ups or reinventions of current video items such as spoofs are a common item in blogs. Works of VJ art or video remixes have also found a distribution outlet in vlogs. Many vlogs don’t even bother to modify the content; some vloggers post clips or advertisements that they found interesting from television and movies. While some corporations have seen this as unauthorized use of copyrighted content, some have also taken advantage of the situation as an opportunity for free marketing of their content.
Vlogging is a fairly simple process. You just take some source video – it could be your own or an original video from someone else – and post it on a vlog server or a blog server that accepts video content. Many blog hosts now allow bloggers to post video content as well as text. If you want to edit the video before putting it online, there are many video editing solutions available – several of them are free. Movie Maker, which is a bundled program with recent versions of the Windows OS, is a great example of a basic editing tool.
Power to the People
With the advent of vlogging, just about anyone could send out a message to the rest of the world through footage, a video clip or a documentary. The power to create and wield such media is no longer exclusive to large media companies but is now available to ordinary people.