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Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Online Videos Get More Interactive

Worth a read today is this Wall Street Journal piece on how Internet video sites are allowing users to annotate videos and embed links in them.

From Christopher Lawton's piece:

    The new editing features have spurred the appearance of more online videos in which users control the action. For example, a series called "The Time Machine" on YouTube is made up of nine videos that follow three 20-something characters -- Chad, Matt and Rob -- as they battle dinosaurs, zombies and bad guys en route to a business meeting. At the end of each roughly two-minute segment, viewers can click on links embedded in the video and choose what the characters do next. That takes them to another video, where the characters continue their journey or die, ending the game. Since its October launch, "The Time Machine" has garnered nearly three million views.

    ...The appearance of the new video features represents the next step in how the Internet is used. While people before could only turn up the volume or click on a larger screen for online videos, they can now use the format to engage with friends and fans. That makes online videos part of a larger entertainment movement -- where users control the medium, interact with others or have the sense of "being there," as in the cases of Internet-connected TVs and videogames, as well as live events shown in 3-D at movie theaters.

Here's Episode #1 of "The Time Machine"

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