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Human Potential in the Age of Exponential Tech

ICE08: Watch and Play – New ways to interact with video

Introduction to the Panel

This Panel will focus on new advances in Interactive Video in response to audiences’ desire to participate more actively in their video content. We will be hearing several case studies today, and I’m looking forward to it, as online video is an important frontier to explore.

The discussion is moderated by David UK (Managing Director, Heavy.com) and features Jason Hsiao (Co-Founder, Animoto), Rob Lane (C0-Founder & CEO, Overlay.tv) and Robert Riopelle (Co-founder, VP of Business Development, Livehive Systems)

David UK is MIA, so Jason is going to start us off…which makes me wonder, do we really need moderators? ;)

Jason Hsiao – Animoto

  • About Us
    • Working on technology that tries to automate creative processes (what happens behind the scences)
    • What does that mean for the user?
      • You give us your music and content and we, in a matter of minutes will create a custom made video.
    • Every video is totally customized to the nuance of the music
    • We also really try to analyze the energy of the music ( so if you give an edgy sound tune the video will be edgy)
    • No two videos are ever the same.
    • Launched to the public 6 months ago
    • You can share the videos through the site, download it (via quicktime) embed it into your social networking sites.
  • How are Users using Animoto?
    • What problems are we trying to solve?
      • Capturing user experience has become increasingly complex.
      • Today, with digital cameras you have an infinite amount of possibilities
      • People are starting to think more like producers, spending less time capturing that one perfect moment, but are trying to capture the entire event, including a beginning, middle and end.
    • Everyone from musicians and artist making videos, to actors making demo reels and parents showing off their kids. Real estate agents, showing off their property, and psychologists creating happy visualizations for the client. Jason even used it to propose to his partner! (she said yes)
    • 30 Spot – A new trend on FB and Myspace that asks if you could tell your own story in 30 seconds what would you use?
    • One of the most interesting things about the last six months is that one the things we got wrong is we thought that people would want to share videos through out website.
      • REALITY CHECK: Close to 95% videos used are consumed elsewhere! When it comes to User Created Content, Users really want their videos wherever, whenever they want. (Be it, their phone, site, etc)

Rob Lane – Overlay.tv

  • About US
    • No one today has found a good way of monetizing the nine billion hours of online video being watched in the US.
    • We believe you need a better model.
    • Platform that allows us to monetize content.
    • Finding videos you know something about or you own, and putting links into that video so that when someone watches that video it’s not passive, you can interact with it.
    • People watch online video for 2 reasons: 1) You are being entertained, you have a laugh and pass it along. 2) You have an interest or passion in the topic.
    • We have an opt in/Opt out system where you can turn the advertising or overlays on and off. But we have found that because the links are relevant to the content they are more inclined to interact with the content on the site.
    • You can alter the skins of the player to customize it to your needs.
    • Creating a relevance between the video and the advertising.
    • Where can this reside?
      • On the overlay site
      • You can embed it into your site.
      • Present as a Facebook Application
    • UGC should not be seen as second class citizens.

Robert Riopelle

  • About Us
    • NanoGaming: real time game where questions were synced (unscripted) with show content.
    • Big Brother 8: over 500,000 interacted every 2.5 minutes answering trivia questions asked real time about the content they were watching for a chance to win tickets to the live taping of the season finale.
    • Young viewers are looking for ways to interact with content, and are proving they are comfortable with two screen viewings.
    • We work with broadcasters to increase online ad revenues through online nano gaming.
      • People can participate by:
        • Predicting what will happen next
        • participating in polls
        • Answering trivia questions
        • Interact with other friends
    • You can use social networking site to involve your own social network.
    • On average, 45 minutes of active participation on the computer screen along side network.
    • Offer a complete, fully outsourced, turnkey solution.
  • Learnings:
    • ESPN Play Caller attracted tens of thousands of MNF viewers to their website playing for an average of two and half hours per broadcast.
    • Nascar Race for the Coke: Generated 22,215 registrations.

Q&A (I’m paraphrasing…these are not direct quotes)

David UK: When the internet launched, it kind of came out as trying to compete with traditional media. And Advertising in it’s essence was not necessarily meant as a touch, taste, feel thing. So, now that the media market has picked up again, we’re going back to getting people to click on things. Do let’s talk about direct response vs. branding.

Rob Lane: We think USC is about experimentation. We’re also talking to people who are saying that i Have all this content on the web, but we can’t put our brand on it. We can find their content online using search and allow them to brand it. We’re involved in this space now, and we need to create a platform that allows you to evolve.

Rob Riopelle: If you look at our program, advertisers are driving this. When we go beyond traditional structure, that’s when the education starts. I think they want to feel that they better understand of what they are getting for this direct response. Where are the measurements? People want to grab onto things they understands and buy into it.

David UK: Interuption vs. Interaction?

Jason: One of the biggest thing we are going to see moving forward, is that there is still a lot of things to be discovered. You might piss users off. I mean the last thing people want is to see a picture of a detergent (advertising) following pictures of their new born baby. So these systems from the past are going to fall apart and we are going to need to get creative in helping people consume video in a meaningful way. We are going to start to see a new genre of interactive tv video, where users will interact with video. It will be a challenge to figure that out. I know i get upset when people try to force that type of advertising when I don’t see a fit. So I think we have a long way to go.

Rob Lane: People learn from being over intrusive, by overlaying so much that you can’t see the video, but they eventually learn to find the right balance. If someone watches your video with the overlay on, then you’ve succeeded.

David UK : Internet is lean forward, and tv was a lean back. Now there is a merging of the two. How much do you find is working with broadcasters to create engagement?

Rob Riopelle: It depends on the content, and the context. Some people want to participate and some don’t. It’s about creating value in the interactive space. We focus on creating relevant content along side the shows so that there is an emotional response.

David UK: How do you measure success in that?

Rob Riopelle: We look at % of viewers.

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