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Startup 'what are we?' video for WIP, a new way to share and review work-in-progress videos

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http://vimeo.com/61607356

 

 

Hi guys,

 

this is a video showcasing what WIP can do for us video makers.

 

Please let us know if anything is unclear, and if anything doesn't work for you. Please be as critical as possible.

 

The hand drawn style will eventually be upgraded to the illustration style found on our site: http://www.wipvideos.com

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What stood out to me by far on the video is the need for a real VO actor. It sounds like someone's girlfriend over-acting as opposed to a professional voice talent. IMO.

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What stood out to me by far on the video is the need for a real VO actor. It sounds like someone's girlfriend over-acting as opposed to a professional voice talent. IMO.

 

The audio is what stood out!?!? :blink:

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The audio is what stood out!?!? :blink:

 

He stated the graphics are temp if that's what you are alluding should stand out the most. So what's left is the sites workflow and the super bad audio read. Considering his graphics are a storyboard of sorts and I could care less about what the WIP site actually offers as turning my friends bitching about my work into a todo list sounds like a nightmare, the audio clearly is what stands out as terrible. If you have opinions, state them. No wonder Monkey blocks your posts.

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If you have opinions, state them. No wonder Monkey blocks your posts.

 

hmm.... Didn't realize I was being hostile.

 

Monkey blocks my posts? What did I do? I guess that means I don't see his posts. Thought he just stopped hanging around here.

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What stood out to me by far on the video is the need for a real VO actor. It sounds like someone's girlfriend over-acting as opposed to a professional voice talent. IMO.

 

Thanks for the feedback C. Smith. I agree about the voice talent, it's good to hear from another person. If you imagine a great voice talent, is the outline compelling to a TVC director?

 

I'm interested that WIP wouldn't work for you as a collaboration tool, could you see it working between you and an advertising agency?

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I'd love it if you could elaborate, give me the meat! I need to hear exactly what you think, no holds barred.

 

Ah, right. My signature isn't there so you may not recognize me. We have been emailing back and forth already with in-depth feedback on how the site works, could be improved, etc etc since you first introduced it here.

 

One of my suggestions in our communications was to maybe reconsider putting up such a rough version of a video that is marketing a service toward those who create videos. And here this is.... So, if I was indeed taking a jab, that is why.

 

I think you may be overselling the 'before' part, like one of those infomercials with the black and white 'OH NO!' areas of someone fumbling over something ridiculous. I say stay positive and present the new. Let users draw their own conclusions as to how its beneficial for them. Its all about a new tool that empowers the user. There are so many silly cloud services now, I think people are starting to quickly shy away from things that they register as non-problems before fully hearing it out / trying. If you are trying to hit a market that deals with ad-agencies, it needs to just be more to the point and feature driven.

 

A good example of what I am getting at would be renderfeed's video. https://vimeo.com/22970508

 

-------

 

To start a constructive critique to help this guy out, my thoughts that were sent over thus far with his responses in case someone disagrees with a suggestion I had:

 

 

Currently the software is in its infancy, and we are smashing ahead as fast as possible with fixes and features. You'll see quite a dramatic change by Wednesday when we release the next version.
I'd address all your points one by one so you know where we are at with this app.
  • As a product being marketed toward video creators, a much better video should be on the front page

We are currently making a far better video, the one you see was made to get in to startup accelerator, which we are in at the moment.

  • I was confused by the product being pitched as an alternative to vimeo, but the front video is hosted by vimeo

We are working on our wording, and i see how this is confusing. We don't see ourselves as a replacement for Vimeo completely, only for the work-in-progress part of making videos. We think they do a fantastic job of hosting finished videos in their community.

  • I understand the goal of it being easy to login without an account while being secure, but trust me, some clients will get furious saying that its not secure because there is no password. All of the other similar platforms out today provide the option to use the method you are natively using (email link only) as well as an on-screen password for clients who can't understand such things

This is great to hear, we will look into a feature where you can set a password for your client

  • Need some type of waiting animation while loading so I know its not frozen

in next release

  • I made a comment bubble, deleted it, but it still shows up when playing back on my end

I hear ya! in next release

  • Comment bubbles stay on far too long

let us know a good length of time, and we'll look into it

  • timecode would still be nice

TC from original timeline from workstation, or time of current render? (ie, the times that vimeo/youtube display) we have timecode in the playbar

  • To do list / print does not work (and should have timecode and a photo of the frame in there)

current frame display will be in next release. we have timecode after the commenters name (see attached screen grab) can you clarify what aspect of the to do list isn't working?

  • profile picture should not cover the video. Nothing should cover a video that is being heavily scrutinized. The time bar currently overlaps video as well

profile pics are being moved to the side of video for next release, we will look into having time bar lower to keep the picture clear

  • Ability to rename the video server-side

great idea, we'll do it

  • Ability to enable / disable downloading of the video

great idea, we'll do it

  • Ability to replace the video while keeping the same link / not re-sending an email

we are having this as a 'versions' feature. all the uploads will be versioned, and shown in a timeline of when they were uploaded (you'll be able to delete any of them that you want, but the idea is to keep them all to see progress)

  • Ability to move forward / backward frame by frame.

left and right arrow keys move the video forward and back 1 frame at a time

I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have.

thanks very much Adam, i'd love to have a skype with you once we have the next release out and you've had a go with it.
Edited by AromaKat

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Oh, in reagard to the timecode, it would be nice to have frame specific display. I understand its kinda difficult but heard its possible with html5 now. And frame specific to the rendered video, starting at frame 1 or 0; not timecode from the software's timeline.

 

The todo list just want showing up for me when I tested. Windows 8 pro 64bit on chrome.

 

The left / right frame skip controls should have a button so people know the functionality is there.

 

I foresee the versioning functionality being more harm than good. I understand the good intentions behind it, bit sometimes there are multiple levels of approval involved, and the top dog should only see one and final version. As long as you can turn access on and off to these versions, then its fine.

 

Comment bubble is a hard one. As short as possible while still being easy to click on once noticed.

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for the feedback C. Smith. I agree about the voice talent, it's good to hear from another person. If you imagine a great voice talent, is the outline compelling to a TVC director?

 

I'm interested that WIP wouldn't work for you as a collaboration tool, could you see it working between you and an advertising agency?

 

First of all I have to say you are a good sport for asking for this kind of feedback. But also, I suppose it's in the nature of what your service provides itself. As a commercial director, I don't thinks there's an application as my clients complain to me on set ; however I would think there is MAYBE some use in a post production environment where you post edits or mograph and want the client to make notes. HOWEVER, that's allegedly what producers are paid to do so I can't imagine they would supplant themselves but having the client go to a site to make notes when they want the personal service.

 

I personally tend to think this is mostly useful for the independent or beginner artist that wants a lot of feedback from a general audience to make his work "better" ( if you subscribe to a focus group making anything better). But then again, I don't see the use for Twitter outside of seeing what celebrities eat for lunch. I suppose it's main use is to give common people the illusion that there's a caring audience for what they have to say all day, but that's another thread :). Good luck with your project.

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Oh, in reagard to the timecode, it would be nice to have frame specific display. I understand its kinda difficult but heard its possible with html5 now. And frame specific to the rendered video, starting at frame 1 or 0; not timecode from the software's timeline. The todo list just want showing up for me when I tested. Windows 8 pro 64bit on chrome. The left / right frame skip controls should have a button so people know the functionality is there. I foresee the versioning functionality being more harm than good. I understand the good intentions behind it, bit sometimes there are multiple levels of approval involved, and the top dog should only see one and final version. As long as you can turn access on and off to these versions, then its fine. Comment bubble is a hard one. As short as possible while still being easy to click on once noticed.

 

Thanks for the reply.

 

I understand what you mean by versioning being a problem, and we are dealing with it in the way you say. Only the right people will be able to see any specific version, and whats great is all the versions will be stacked in one place (something people are finding impossible with Vimeo).

 

In terms of the keyboard controls, we're designing up an overlay you can turn on and off to show all the shortcuts, i agree people need to know they are there, but do not agree a physical version of each thing must be present in the app, but within time, if enough people try beating us up about it, i'm sure we'll relook into it!

 

The comment bubbles are going to be staying on for 1 sec and 12 frames. This seems to be a good length to see it, and click on it if needed. There will also be a view where you can turn them all off in one go to clearly watch the video. We're currently working on 'physics' within the comment boxes, where they will react to each other. This not only looks and feels great, but it means if you want to clear an area, you can drag one comment box and knock all the others out of the way. The comment boxes will also have a little tail that goes to a selection dot. this dot will remain in the same place as you move the box, so you'll always know what the note is in reference to even after moving it.

 

Frame accurate TC coming in next release (this week, which also sees the first version of the UI, what you are seeing so far is the first thing we ever built).

 

awesome.

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First of all I have to say you are a good sport for asking for this kind of feedback. But also, I suppose it's in the nature of what your service provides itself. As a commercial director, I don't thinks there's an application as my clients complain to me on set ; however I would think there is MAYBE some use in a post production environment where you post edits or mograph and want the client to make notes. HOWEVER, that's allegedly what producers are paid to do so I can't imagine they would supplant themselves but having the client go to a site to make notes when they want the personal service. I personally tend to think this is mostly useful for the independent or beginner artist that wants a lot of feedback from a general audience to make his work "better" ( if you subscribe to a focus group making anything better). But then again, I don't see the use for Twitter outside of seeing what celebrities eat for lunch. I suppose it's main use is to give common people the illusion that there's a caring audience for what they have to say all day, but that's another thread :). Good luck with your project.

 

Thanks Chris, it's always nice to be called a good sport.

 

In answer to your comments. WIP has come about due to my need to share video with clients (usually ad agencies, who show their client separately and 'reinterpret' what they have said about the work back to me). I have found that they love the ability to write contextual comments, and I love getting them as soon as they've done them.

 

However, I can see that you are a few rungs above me in the TVC directing world and have a raft of producers between you and an agency. When I've talked to bigger prod co's about WIP they have wanted to use it as a connector between their producers in the prod co, and the producer at the ad agency (getting comments from creatives and suits). These comments then being handed over to directors to digest and work from.

 

What they have said is, this way of working will reduce any hint of mistakes as comments and non-contextual emails are sent from person to person to finally land with the person (you) who will be making some decisions around them.

 

This is how I see WIP working for you as a live-action TV commercials director. And soon you'll be able to get all this on your iPad, so you can be at home in the bath doing work.

 

With permission controls we are going to make it possible for a suit to show a creative what the client wants, the creative to interpret this to a producer, who gives it to the producer at the prod co, who in turn presents it to the director, all with none of the other people in the chain seeing what any of the others said, all on the same video, all in the browser.

 

WIP is a private video sharing platform, so there is no 'focus group' making the video. The video maker shows only the people they want feedback from.

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The todo list just want showing up for me when I tested. Windows 8 pro 64bit on chrome.

 

The to do list only shows up when comments are made from people invited to give feedback. We've had a few people asking for this functionality for comments they make, as its a way of reminding themselves to do things. Would you agree?

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they have wanted to use it as a connector between their producers in the prod co, and the producer at the ad agency (getting comments from creatives and suits). These comments then being handed over to directors to digest and work from.

 

What they have said is, this way of working will reduce any hint of mistakes as comments and non-contextual emails are sent from person to person to finally land with the person (you) who will be making some decisions around them.

 

That does make sense. I don't know how many times I ask my line producer, "well did they mean <-THIS or THIS->? because they are 2 completely different things. But I usually follow this with, "let's get on a call and let me speak directly to them and figure this out".

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Yo rollo. I totally see a good use for this service if it is cheap enough. Not sure why Chris is so sceptical as it seems like your service is the poor man's cinesync, which is quite popular.

 

On a lot of jobs I am my own producer or I end up dealing with disorganized producers on the client side, or sometimes client is in a different timezone and hard to reach, and I would totally love a tool like this.

 

One issue that you don't address with this video is security. To me that would be one of my main concerns, has to be bulletproof so there is no chance of leaks.

 

Also it would be cool if the client could draw on the frame, nothing fancy just the abillity to circle something or draw a line.

 

Given that it's super rough I think it does a good job of explaining what the service is all about.

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Well that was why I added my Twitter anctetode. Meaning, I may have opinions that the masses don't share so...see what I know ;)

 

However, I COMPLETELY see the point of Cinesync and that is that it is a live video meeting, no? Where this is a thing where you post a video and wait for comments? To me that is the crucial difference. My main rub in this whole process, is that my job is about selling my ideas, not putting them out there for a group with no leadership run astray with comments. It sets up a whole workflow that we on the video posting side are just slaves to what ever you see posted. Because there is no doubt you will disagree with some it and need to set up a conference call to discuss and "sell" them back onto the right path.

 

If I was in a Cinesync with the client then absolutely, then I could walk them through the process and make sure they understand the context of everything at all times. Then it's a meeting or conf call with video and screen shares. My fear with this WIP process is it just opens up the door for even more requests that may run everything off course.

 

I'm not sure how other people's businesses are, but in mine, it is a CONSTANT sales position. I alway say a film director is 5% the film stuff, and the rest is a mix of psychologist and salesperson. And with posting videos, I'm only using the 5% part. It directly amplifies everything (for me) that is bad in the process.

 

OR maybe I'm still unclear from the video how the process works.

 

Not sure why Chris is so sceptical as it seems like your service is the poor man's cinesync, which is quite popular.

 

Edited by C.Smith

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Cinesync

 

Thanks! I used this a couple of years back and forgot what it was called, looking all around for it since. I loved that thing. We have been working on a Red5 server to crank out video output from our blackmagic outputs so a client can log into a page with an embedded flash player while on the phone so we can tweak a few things here and there. We call it the virtual client couch. Its can be wonky, a bit taxing on the workstation and isn't as ideal for some things as cinesync.

 

 

I get C. Smith's point from a directorial POV, especially when working with more live action but there is definitely a market for it. In it's current state, I see this as something more geared toward those who make sales presentations and whatnot.

 

The cartoonish character feel of the site design adds to this weird crowdsourcing vibe that I think is helping Chris's push away from it. I'm sure at some point he posts or attaches a video into his email for others to see for whatever reason, if not for feedback. If you can get to the bottom of what would make him feel like it might be helpful to him it would be a good pivot point.

 

If it can be white-labeled and appear to be integrated into one's own site (domain ghosting), it may be good.

 

Having tried a few platforms that offer annotation functionality, I found that clients simply do not ever use it and just shoot an email no matter how much I try to show them. They truly don't care. However, with Cineshare, everyone loves getting interactive with it. Vyoopoint probably had the most annotation functionality, but it was too powerful and confused people.

 

Right now, I am using postspots.com. It can be white-labeled, has all of the basic permissions admin functionality, shows when and where it has been viewed / downloaded, and doesn't beg for feedback within the platform. Its just so people can see a video too large for email, watch it without downloading, or downloading if they choose to while feeling its in a privately controlled area. I think if you can enable the administrator toggle on/off the annotation functionality, and clone the functionality of postspots at a cheaper price point I would make the jump.

 

The annotation functionality is nice to know is there, but to be honest I would probably never use it or turn it on for people to start getting crazy with. There definitely is a use for a professional, integrated-looking video posting platform that is blatantly secure.

 

I think what may be key for you after you get the currently planned functionality in there is to start thinking less about the collaboration aspect and more about integration and straight up ease of use. Vyoopoint was cool in that you could on a per-post basis throw up a unique background image. Clients seemed to like the posts that had their video playing against a backdrop design of their brand. I like that with postspots, its branded to us and it feels like you are still within our own site, adding to the feeling of security.

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Hey Chris I totally get that and totally agree. For sure real direct communication is always the first choice.

 

Like with any tool it depends how you use it. For me I see it as a first step before the conference call so everyone can clearly transmit their notes. You don't have to be a slave to the notes, you can still push back you can still try and sell it. I guess I kind of feel like those notes are coming anyways so I'd rather have them in a clear organized fashion than 20 different emails.

 

I guess everyone's mileage varies. I work on a lot of projects where there is never a conference call or they are very infrequent just because of everyone's schedules or who knows maybe people just can't be bothered.

 

I would tend to use this more for the small changes towards the end for sure the first time I present a cut I'd want to do it in a context where I can sell it.

 

But towards the end when you are on revision 20 of an edit and you are getting the requests for those last little nit picky changes, I can see it as a good tool for that. Even the fact that the notes are right there on the edit makes sure at least everyone is looking at the same cut.

 

I can also see it as a simple way for me to annotate my edits when showing to a client not just for clients to give me their notes. Also as a great note taking tool when going over a cut with an editor.

 

Edit --- After reading Aromakat's post just now would second the ease of use thing. Very very hard to get clients to use anything, that is not deadsimple. UI needs to be understood instantly with zero learning curve, they will not read a how to or watch a tutorial video on how to use something.

Edited by anothername

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Great responses guys.

 

What i'm hearing in general is:

 

WIP would work for freelancers and 'one man shops', which is good news, as this is the target market.

 

You guys want it to be as simple as possilble to use, which again is good news, as that is our MO.

 

Could you guys tell me some other products you've been using? So far you've said: Vyoopoint, Cineshare, postspots.com, Cinesync.. more?

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Yo rollo. I totally see a good use for this service if it is cheap enough. Not sure why Chris is so sceptical as it seems like your service is the poor man's cinesync.

 

One issue that you don't address with this video is security. To me that would be one of my main concerns, has to be bulletproof so there is no chance of leaks.

 

Also it would be cool if the client could draw on the frame, nothing fancy just the abillity to circle something or draw a line.

Hi,

 

in answer to your points.

 

'the poor mans cinesync' is pretty much the perfect name! Although we won't be 'real time' for a while yet... you say 'if it were cheap enough' what is a good price for you per month? (unlimited storage, projects, invites etc)

 

Security is right up there for us. We currently have 256SSL, which is the same as a bank...

 

Drawing on the frame is in the roadmap :)

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My fear with this WIP process is it just opens up the door for even more requests that may run everything off course.

 

I know what you mean, but the tool is really only to get comments from the right people about the right thing. I doubt an ad agencies client would ever get the chance to write on top of the video, the suit would tell the creative what happened, the creative would write the comments, the agency producer would check them, and then they would get over to the prod co. No weird info, nobody strange seeing what they shouldn't.

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Great feedback, thanks. I'll keep thinking on it.

 

What would you pay for what you've stated here?

 

 

The annotation functionality is nice to know is there, but to be honest I would probably never use it or turn it on for people to start getting crazy with. There definitely is a use for a professional, integrated-looking video posting platform that is blatantly secure.

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