Monday, October 29, 2012

A Technicolor World

When I was growing up, people used to talk about seeing the world in Technicolor.   But what that really meant was that we wished that the world — and life — were really one big, wonderful movie.  And, ideally, those wonderful movies would be all over the place.
Well, if the Internet is our world, or at least a big part of it, that wish has been granted.  Videos and eye-catching infographics (analogous to the storyboards for a movie) are all over the place.  And is life wonderful?  Well, it’s certainly colorful!
According to Gabriel Stricker, Twitter’s Vice President of Communications, 80% of AT&T's assets can be seen on video and 15% are infographics.  The company employs video blogs, and the pickup is huge.  The telecom giant invited bloggers to a press conference and most brought their own video cameras.  It made a public service announcement video about a teenager who was brain damaged from texting while driving and got over 600,000 views. 
Websites of all types are using more and more moving images.  If someone in business returns from a conference, you are likely to see a video summary. Further, infographics, which are pictorial storyboards that simplify complex presentations, are all over the Internet as well — on topics as diverse as “The Life and Times of Steve Jobs," “How Americans Spend Their Day” and the "State of Social Media and Healthcare,"  produced by my firm’s Health division. 
Is the quality of online videos as good as professional television?  Most often not; however, viewers today seem to prefer spontaneous, natural video to that which is staged.  In fact, an unfinished video may even be more tantalizing for some.  Of course, Facebook and YouTube are littered with videos and images — as are Vimeo, Flickr, Twitpic and Pinterest, among others.
The Internet also offers an imagined world that still may be more beautiful.  According to Dr. John Seeley Brown, there are 6,000 communities around Harry Potter, with 386,000 backstories written about it and archived.  It is most likely a world of words and videos.
Admittedly, while all of these videos and images are making things more real for us, they are also transporting us to a different place and, hopefully, making life even more wonderful!

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