Everyone knows about YouTube, but in fact there are dozens of video sharing sites out there -- most of them free -- that offer features similar to, and in some instances superior to, YouTube's.
TopTen Reviews, which is sort of a Consumer Guide for techies, recently rated video sharing sites, offering comprehensive reviews of each and a useful side-by-side comparison chart. Here are the leaders of the pack:
YouTube, Metacafe, Break, Google, DailyMotion, Yahoo!, Revver, Vimeo, VidiLife, and Stickam.
Here's some of the criteria that their reviewers used:
Audience Features (e.g. search capabilities; screenshot previews; content description; viewer ratings system)
Producer Features (e.g. video creation tools; educational resources; public/private options)
Content (e.g. large library; aesthetic and legal regulations)
Ease of Use (e.g. intuitive organization and navigation; quick loading; minimal buffer delays)
Help/Support (e.g. FAQs; user guides & forums; customer service)
So which site was number one? No surprise here -- YouTube. It wasn't the first video sharing site, and its content is not always the greatest, but it's now synonymous with video itself, having garnered nearly a fifth of the world's Internet traffic. (Here's the TopTen review.)
TopTen reviewers especially liked YouTube's "functionality and community."
The real strength of YouTube is the members that interact, comment, and post videos for specific interests. It’s possible to find a video on YouTube for any interest, occupation, hobby or pastime...But is YouTube the best choice for videojournalists, who want their non-fiction stories, often on weighty topics, to stand out from the crowd? What has your experience been with video sharing sites? Which ones do you use... and why?
Perhaps the most telling effect of YouTube’s video sharing formula is the fact that YouTube has gone from being the star to creating stars.... Now presidential candidates use YouTube as a way to give their debates and speeches a national audience, because YouTube has such a broad user base....