I hate video, a rant

Video killed the radio star, but who’s going to kill video?

Notes from Jenn:

  • If you use the voiceover feature and enjoy it, do let me know. I did not hear back from anyone about this and I don’t receive stats on it, either.
  • I recently booked a last-minute weekend getaway with my boyfriend. We drove a whopping (sarcasm) one hour down the peninsula into Redwood City. It was a nice, much-needed escape.
  • In a big first, I received a settlement award from a class action lawsuit. It was for IL residents who were on Facebook and the check was $397 (!!!). Facebook is in another class-action lawsuit, you can check if you qualify here.
  • And finally, the biggest news of all is that I am introducing paid subscriptions. If you’re a business, it’s very likely that you can expense this. For over six years, I’ve poured hours into each newsletter send without any expectations in return (no, I do not get clients from this newsletter). I would like to grow this newsletter into something more than it currently is and to do so, I need more time and well, time is money. My first goal is to have enough paid subscriptions to support the projects I want to do. And the second goal is for it to be a sustainable source of income. While there is no difference in free vs paid benefits at the moment, I do plan on introducing them in the next few months. There are no plans to change the 2x/month free issues. Pricing is $5/month or $50/year, $150/year for founding members.
words "the tanJentt" aligned left and above a full-width bracket facing down

I hate video, a rant

In many ways, I am a terrible digital-savvy millennial. I hate video as a media format.

When I open my Instagram app these days, I’m hit with Reel after Reel with a “suggested for you” one every few posts. I know that Instagram is duplicating TikTok. I know that video is what’s next and what Instagram is going for. They’ve already announced this, so I’m under no illusion that it’ll change. But if I wanted to look at TikTok format videos, I would be on TikTok! Instead, I find myself yearning for the earlier days of Instagram when we had more terrible camera photo quality, and it was only capable of single-image posts. At least those felt a lot more authentic.

There have been very few times when I watch videos. Software onboarding how-to guides are often more helpful in video because you’re watching screencaps. Clothing that is better modeled in action versus in a still is useful. My current favorite is Klassy Network because they use models of all sizes. And lastly, videos of cute dogs doing cute dog things. That’s it. Oh wait, those oddly satisfying videos are also great: a horse pedicure, power washing.

You would think that as a photographer, videography is just a simple step away. But the part I dislike about photography is the post-process work. In videography, you spend time storyboarding, filming a million takes, and then a giant percentage of time in the editing portion. I want to like video, really. I want the desire to create videos and put my face on the camera and be interested in a format that everyone is embracing. Unfortunately, none of this sounds appealing to me. It would be so much easier if it were!

As high-quality video recordings become more accessible, I have yet to enjoy the filming style à la Blair Witch Project. It makes me dizzy to see a video filmed with a shaky hand, just like it makes me dizzy to watch IMAX and 3D movies.

Is video a necessary evil? I don’t think it’s reached that status yet, but it sure feels like it will. All this being said, yes, if you like video, go for it. If you feel like you need to do it, go for it. If you hate it but are willing to do it, may I suggest using screenshots or text with a background video like in this post. And if you’re like me, who watches videos when absolutely necessary, turning captions on and playing at 1.5-2x speed has made it much more tolerable.

I dislike the word “hack,” but in this case, I’m all for it: do you have a hack for filming videos? Editing them? Are you a former video hater but now converted? I want to know.

The only videos I’m willing to take and share are of my dog because I believe we can always use more cute dog videos. Here’s one, enjoy.

Side note: Zoey’s IG profile post engagements are usually in the low double digits. Within an hour of posting this Reel, it had over 100 engagements. I hate this timeline.

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🤳🏻 social media

Twitter introduced the “unmention” feature for everyone (now you can exit conversations!). It’s testing “CoTweets” and custom timelines. The company released a new study on how brand presence on social media influences consumer purchase behavior (“60% of purchasers who engaged with a brand via tweet said that it had some influence on their activity.”) The saga continues: Musk backed out of the deal, Twitter is suing for him to honor it, Musk countersued. On and on we go and the trial is now expedited.

Instagram added the ability to boost Reels, new search tools to find new businesses, and the Instagram Live Producer that lets you use streaming software. It’s testing notes (like tweets but in your inbox), ability to have ads on your profile, and an Instagram Creator Marketplace.

Meta is testing having multiple personal profiles associated with one account. LinkedIn formally launched a new business manager and YouTube added a Shopify integration.

📤 digital marketing

👀 interesting reads

artful leaf outlines on left, "plant update" immediately to the right
A hand holding a purple pot with three leaves coming out of it: green, yellow, shriveled/dead
At first glance, you may think this plant is dying but it’s not the case! I separated this from a plant that was succumbing to root rot (1000% my fault). There were only two leaves at the time and they looked increasingly terrible. No new leaf came out of the existing two but the roots did redirect their energy to a whole new stem (the green leaf) that grew happily. It is already working on its second leaf.