Friday, November 6, 2009

Video WTF: Free Answers to Your Questions

Video WTF is a new communally-minded open-source Website where you can ask -- and answer -- any question about video cameras, editing, production, publishing, promotion, whatever.

It's collaboratively moderated, and you can dive in and participate without even registering. And it's free!

(Though your first question might understandably be: For a site that aspires to mainstream acceptance, why the potentially controversial and off-putting name?)

Topics range from how to bid on a video project or construct a business proposal for a Web series, to hardware/software recommendations, to infinitely more technical considerations.

(We're encouraged because Video WTF is brought to you by the same folks who created Miro, a high-quality open-source, non-profit HD video player and podcast client that hands-down beats what most newspapers out there are using. You can download the free software to view and publish video. They've also recently launched Miro Community, which enables you to create your own private multi-source YouTube for free -- a boon for colleges and PBS affiliates.)

Have a video whose length or file size exceeds the limitations of YouTube or Vimeo? Use Video WTF to ask for pointers to alternative video sharing sites. Or to help others by sharing your knowledge.

A relatively inexpensive lavalier (Azden WMS-PRO Wireless Microphone System for $160) was generously recommended to us by a KobreChannel reader, but sounds too good to be true at that price, and so we just asked Video WTF users if they have heard feedback about it, or personally encountered any drawbacks (e.g. static).

Similarly, our new Kodak Zi8 does not zoom smoothly or silently -- a glitch with just our video camera, or a flaw in the model? We asked Video WTF denizens for their experiences.

We look forward to sharing their responses with you.

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