From Print Mag to Online Video

Posted on April 20, 2006 
Filed Under Uncategorized

MAKE magazine is jumping from print to video via the fledgling video service YouTube, according to a MediaPost report. MAKE editor Torrone took the opportunity to ditch Google Video.

Make has partnered with YouTube to air video clips that are longer than YouTube users are normally allowed by becoming a member of YouTube’s “Director’s Program” service, giving the print publisher the same kind of online video distribution capabilities as big TV networks like E! Entertainment and MTV2. YouTube also provides members of the “Director’s Program” with features such as links leading back to their own websites and integration of brand graphics.

“I’m really interested in seeing what kind of metrics we can get for what we publish off of YouTube,” said Make Associate Editor Phil Torrone. “I’ve been tracking response through the URLs we’re positioning with the video clips, trying to get an idea of what kind of response we can get. For me it’s a big experiment.” Torrone said YouTube is also tracking “how many people are joining the Make group, and how many people are downloading the videos.

Make’s video offerings include short-form, how-to documentaries about various projects featured in the magazine, including some of Torrone’s own creations: an ambulatory humanoid robot and shoes that spell out messages in the air with LEDs as you walk. When Make begins distributing footage from the Faire, including all manner of bizarre robotics, curious inventions, and amateur water rocketry, “I suspect there will be an uptick in magazine subscriptions, and an uptick in visits to the website,” Torrone said.

Because YouTube and similar services like Google Video are so much less expensive and easier than establishing proprietary video-streaming websites, Torrone predicted these platforms will be the wave of the future for smaller content providers, including printed magazine publishers. “Make will never invest the money and engineering in video that YouTube has – and why create your own proprietary video system when what they have works perfectly well?”

That said, Torrone warned of vast quality differences in the market. “The interesting thing is that with Google Video, we’ve uploaded videos and they just take weeks and weeks and weeks to go up. I uploaded a couple videos on Google Video a few weeks ago and they’re still not up there,” he noted.

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