Robin - fantastic, thanks for this, it's a splendid read and it's brighten up my Google reader for today.
Online Video Publishing: Where To Find Free Corporate News Video Footage - The NewsMarket
Finding broadcast-quality news and product-oriented video footage has been until now an asset available only to the major television networks.
Photo credit: Mike Gilbert
Major television networks around the world are indeed hooked to major video distribution feeds that provide them with an ongoing stream of video material, clips and news that they can record and re-edit into any number of news or video stories. The quantity of such material is so vast, that only a tiny fraction of it makes it to each television channel daily programming.
On the other hand, online video sharing destinations and video blogs are rapidly increasing in number and relevance, and nonetheless the use of straight-to-camera talking heads are not always the most engaging type of content to offer, these video sites are often much more sincere and believable than major TV stations with perfectly rehearsed anchormen reading a teleprompter script and with great quality stock news footage in the back.
Reality is that while mainstream television stations have video feeds coming to their newsroom with literally hundreds of alternative just-taped video footage to select from, a small online independent publisher has certainly not the resources and business partnerships in place to get anything close to that coming into her computer.
Stock news video footage doesn't come cheap, and a single clip of a minute or two can set you back tens or even hundreds of dollars.
But wouldn't it be great if there was an online service out there, which at least collected, gathered and prepared the very best corporate video press releases and corporate news shorts for clearance to the web-based independent online publisher?
As independent publisher would essentially be super-efficient news distributors and marketers for those very stories and for the brands behind them, this would be a win-win proposition for all involved. And while this would not allow small independent publishers to get access to major television breaking video footage, it would be an important step in the right direction.
More so in fact than one would think. Corporations releasing video materials about their new products and technologies would greatly benefit from a much wider and much more targeted distribution of their messages and small publishers would have quality video materials with which to enrich and complement their text-based stories. This approach would not limit independent publishers freedom to criticize or dissent with some of the corporate announcements made and it would therefore give anyone involved in this cycle a tangible extra benefit.
The good news is that such a service already exists and it does all of this and more, without charging you a single cent. It's called The NewsMarket.
In this video review of the service I walk you through the simple process of searching for, downloading and putting together high-quality b-roll video footage to bring some professional, broadcast-level video material into your video news.
The NewsMarket is, then, something of a find for anyone interested in entering the sizzling hot arena of online video news. Stock news footage takes the quality of your online video to the next level, so that rather than making a three minute video of your face delivering the news, you can cut away to relevant, immediate video footage that supports what you're talking about.
You see it on the TV news everyday - the reporter begins to tell the story, and within a few seconds, the news segment has cut away to illustrate what she's saying with real life examples, as her voice continues over the footage.
It is one thing to be told about something that has just happened, and quite another to be shown. Video is, of course, an inherently visual medium, and if you want to make an impact you're going to have to offer something more than a single static shot of your head. That's where The NewsMarket comes in.
Think of it as a huge, constantly updated library of news footage content that you can grab, edit and use to bring your news story to life. What it won't do is give you a ready to publish video you can embed right into your blog. What it will do is give you a number of clips on a news item, that you can edit together, and add your own commentary over the top. All without having to leave your house.
This is a great way of being able to quickly put together news segments to publish to your blog. Last year, when Google updated their Gmail for mobile phones I put together the following one minute video using NewsMarket footage:
While this video won't be winning me the Pulitzer, it does a far more effective job of illustrating the news item than a close up of my face might have. The process involved was a very quick one:
- I received a notification of the news items to my email inbox
- I went to The NewsMarket, checked out the videos that had been gathered together around the story, and downloaded the one's that I thought I could use
- I quickly edited them together
- Added some music and a voice over
- And published the video to YouTube
This entire process didn't take long at all, and gave me dynamic video content to add value to the content of the blog post it was nested within.
A guided tour
In the following video I walk you through the simple process of sourcing and downloading quality news content via The NewsMarket:
The NewsMarket basics
To summarize the experience of using The NewsMarket to gather footage, it is basically as simple as choosing a category or categories that suit your particular target audience, leafing through the latest offerings, selecting those that seem suitable, and then downloading them to your desktop.
If you have a particular subject in mind, you can of course run a search on all of the stories contained within The NewsMarket. However, if you have absolutely no idea about what you are going to make your news video about, this isn't a problem, as the front page of the site offers both a 'latest news stories' showcase, and a hand-picked selection of video highlights, specials and 'in the news' links to footage that might easily provide the core of a news story for you.
In addition to the videos which make up the vast quantity of The NewsMarket's content, there are also still images and audio files that you can search individually, or see grouped around the same news stories the videos are connected to. In this way you can search for particular media to make use of in your production, or see all of the available media attached to a given news story.
If you want to stay on the very cutting edge of the news footage coming in, you can sign up to have notifications sent to your email account - and these can be honed to just the categories you are interested in. Alternatively, it is also possible to subscribe to RSS feeds of any of the categories of news stories, so that you are instantly updated of new additions to The NewsMarket's library of video content.
Towards the end of last year The NewsMarket was given a considerable facelift, and since then navigating it's video content has been a real pleasure. As before, news items are gathered into categories which makes finding relevant content for your niche-audience a simple task. With categories ranging from 'Automotive and Transportation' to 'Healthcare' and 'Entertainment' there is likely to be content that will suit most blogs' audiences, and The NewsMarket's designers have made it very easy to find.
Navigating video is equally easy, and it is possible to preview news items before you have even clicked through to the specific details, as you can see in the picture below.
The addition of a film strip of additional related items, which can also be previewed on the spot, makes quickly searching for content that you can easily splice together a very straightforward operation.
The site's frontpage provides a simple way to find the freshest content, providing a list of the latest stories, each with a brief description and thumbnail image. Furthermore, when you enter the specific categories of content, below the selection of latest related news items the site makes suggestions of content you may also be interested in, based on your profile. This is a nice addition that works in a similar way to Amazon.com's recommendations, and the suggestions offered up are very often on the mark.
The listings themselves are very informative, so that you have both a headline, further information, a thumbnail image, video source, an indication of how many clips are available for a given story, and the ability to instantly add all of these clips to your basket, ready for download.
By grouping footage around news items, it is very easy to find related content to edit together, and this is central to the navigation experience of The NewsMarket. Had clips been arranged individually, rather than gathered around news stories, it would have considerably more painstaking to piece together a story. As it is, many news items come packed with four, five or more related clips.
The Amazon metaphor is extended further given that you select items and put them into your shopping basket, only to finish your footage gathering by going to the checkout, where you download the clips you have selected in the most suitable format. This cart and checkout approach is instantly familiar, and makes using The NewsMarket feel less daunting, and more intuitive.
Putting your footage together
Once you have downloaded your clips, you are going to need to set about piecing them together. A video editing tutorial is beyond the remit of this review, but it should suffice to say that you don't need Final Cut or Avid to edit these clips together and add sound to them.
In terms of editing, the clips are already trimmed down to twenty second to one minute play times, and at the most basic level you could thread a bunch of them together using the free bundled video software on your computer (Windows Movie Maker, iMovie or Kino).
Equally, you could upload and edit them using one of the free online video remix services, including JumpCut and eyespot, both of which have basic sound editing tools in for the bargain.
Working from your desktop, adding a piece of music and your voice over is as simple as making use of free sound-editing software like Audacity, so that you can put together news clips without spending a single cent.
If you are looking for broadcast-quality corporate video footage, showcasing the latest clips on new products and technologies as well as political, economic issues, the NewsMarket is an invaluable online resource providing free access to corporate and paid-for video materials.
The NewsMarket provides easy and organized access to this content which can be easily downloaded to your own computer for further processing, editing, titling and audio dubbing.
While The NewsMarket offering will not satisfy those who want breaking video news content on non-commercial and not-paid for breaking stories, it does offer a lot to those small online publishers who want to bring one notch up the quality of their video programming and contents.
In supplying short, b-roll clips, the narration of the news is left to you, to put whatever spin you'd like to on it. The vast majority of the clips range from twenty seconds to a minute in playing time, and are therefore perfect for using as 'inserts' around your more personal reportage, or alternatively, providing you a ready to use video clip that you can quickly throw nto a larger news piece.
While the NewsMarket does not yet offer an "embed" option which would more easily allow online publishers to easily integrate the video materials on their sites, it nicely provides notifications to publishers on the release of new video footage according to their preferences.
the growth sector of Internet TV, will find The NewsMarket well worth signing up for.
With the NewsMarket any small online video publisher can now tap into the same broadcast-quality video footage that you normally see on major television networks, further blurring the line between traditional pros and the new emerging small and talented independents.
If you found this article interesting, you might want to check out the following related links:
- The NewsMarket.com - where to go to get started
- Archive.org's moving image archive is certainly less up to date, but is another great source of free video footage (albeit up to one hundred years old)
- Digital Inspiration's Amit Agarwal on how to embed existing news videos into your blog
- ZDNet apparently offers an editorial partnership program apparently allowing online publishing partners a number of options including RSS feed syndication and the ability to embed and re-use their excellent technology-oriented video reviews and commentaries. But after having filled out their contact request form and having requested more info about their offer I never got a reply from them. Check out:
Robin Good and Michael Pick -
Online Video Publishing: Where To Find Free Corporate News Video Footage - The NewsMarket
Originally written by Robin Good and Michael Pick on MasterNewMedia
Robin, could you go into more detail on the various formats of broadcast quality downloads provided and the data rates at which they are encoded at? Also aspect ratios?
Thanks for the news links! I hope to make great use of them. Cheers Robin.