Thanks in large part to the availability of high-speed Internet connectivity, we are now able to enjoy a wide range of content in different forms—from articles and images to audio and live streaming video—all within mere seconds. At the moment, though, out of all those types, video reigns supreme. There’s a reason why YouTube has become so big, and sharing streaming videos has become one of the most common forms of activity on social media. In an age where content is king, video is definitely the king of kings.
Empowered by Technology
These days, it’s pretty easy and straightforward to get video content out on the Internet. Mobile phones have cameras that are decent and powerful enough to capture high-definition footage of nearly any subject under the sun, from the very mundane to the utterly remarkable. One can choose to edit the video on some accessible software, or it can be uploaded as is, whether via a computer or straight from mobile devices that allow for it.
One thing is clear: the emergence of video as the content medium of choice has its roots in the constant development of technology. It is this technology that empowers people to create, share, and push the content, and it is this technology that allows all of us to consume said content. Whether one is at home, in school, at work, or toiling in a virtual office, video is accessible in varying degrees because it is enabled by the technology that we have.
YouTube and Beyond
According to the statistics provided by YouTube, the site gets a staggering 800 million unique visits each month, and there were over 1 trillion—that’s 1,000,000,000,000—total views in 2011. Are you digging those numbers yet? How about this one: last year, YouTube access through mobile channels tripled compared to the year before that, and now over 20 percent of the site’s global traffic comes from mobile. If these numbers don’t show you just how far YouTube’s reach is, then nothing will.
That kind of reach doesn’t just apply to YouTube. To an extent, that represents the entire body of video content on the Web. While YouTube will remain at the top of the heap, that doesn’t mean having your videos posted at some other alternative video-hosting site won’t give your content the traction it needs to accomplish your goals. For one thing, YouTube has certain restrictions that might deter certain people from uploading there.
Everyone else is just battling for second place, but it’s a pretty close fight and the contenders do make a strong case for themselves. From Vimeo to Dailymotion to Yfrog, these alternatives will serve anyone well in case YouTube isn’t the best fit. This might be because you feel like your content will be flagged by the top site in one way or another, or maybe YouTube is simply banned in your country. It would be just sad to let that video of your cat go to waste if you can’t upload it, so go for the next best video-sharing site instead.
The Internet is pretty big and there’s practically something about everything on the Web, so it follows that video content will cover all sorts of stuff, be it cat or dog videos, highlight clips of your favorite basketball stars, infomercials, tutorials, short films, et cetera.
The thing about video content is that its relevance depends largely upon the audience viewing the videos. There’s never a sure thing; one video may be so amusing or funny that it goes crazily viral, but it might still be offensive or boring to a small sample size, while another video might have a mere 25 views but those viewers had the time of their lives watching it.
As long as people have the interest to come up with creative and informative videos, these will always have an audience, and this type of content will maintain its position at the top. With everything discussed above, there’s no doubt that video creation, distribution, and consumption over the Internet should continue to rise in the near future.