Today I watched a TED Talk from Chris Anderson on the power of web video to spur global innovation. On the surface, the idea didn’t seem too mind-blowing to me: yes yes, global sharing, people watch a lot of video, yadda yadda.
But I can’t stop thinking about the talk.
Chris opened with the example of a 6-year-old Japanese boy showing off eye-popping dance moves in a home video. He explained how watching that clip was a watershed moment for filmmaker Jon Chu, who realized that the internet was evolving dance:
Dancers have created a whole global laboratory online. Kids in Japan are taking moves from a YouTube video created in Detroit, building on it within days and releasing a new video, while teenagers in California are taking the Japanese video and remixing it to create a whole new dance style.
Something clicked with me. I caught an exhilarating glimpse of what web video might represent.
As the talk continued, a second idea caught my attention: Chris spoke of web video representing a communication shift as powerful as the invention of the printing press.
For millennia, humans have communicated face-to-face. The rise of the printed word a few hundred years ago allowed us to spread our ideas farther, sharing them with more people. Now we have the technology to bring those two worlds together: the power of face-to-face communication and the ability to spread that communication far and wide. Even better, we can distribute that communication instantly.
The globe is responding eagerly.
So many search queries are made for YouTube content that it can be considered the #2 search engine in the world. Did you catch that? Apart from Google, there is no other site that users search more often for content. Other staggering statistics: Users collectively upload more than 35 hours of video to the site every minute of every day. And the world watches 80 million hours of YouTube video per day.
Before watching Chris’s talk, I’ll admit I considered video an adjunct strategy for disseminating information. I know some people like to acquire information through reading it, some by hearing it, others by seeing a live demonstration. There are also the people that like to learn by conducting their own experiments. Well and good. This is why it makes sense to package your intellectual property in multiple formats, to appeal to multiple learning methods.
But now I think web video represents a much larger and more significant opportunity than I previously believed.
Watch Chris’s talk and see what you think. How could video blow your industry wide open? What could you share in a video that would allow people here and abroad to collaborate with you in advancing the world’s pool of ideas or processes or skills? What could Highspot share?
I’m excited to hear your thoughts.