Animoto and SmugMug bring video editing to us idiots

After watching that last video edited by two pros I’m jealous. How can the rest of us who have iPhone video cameras, or low-cost Flip or Kodak cameras, going to make killer professional quality videos?

Animoto and Smugmug, this morning, announced a partnership that makes it possible.

Why does this matter? Well, TechCrunch founder Mike Arrington announced on Twitter that Animoto is his favorite service ever.

Oh, and notice that I filmed the whole interview last night on my Kodak Zi8. Cost? $180.


The new dial tone: video+social media

Last night I attended a Weezer concert thanks to MySpace. When the lights were off you could see the revolution: lots of little screens all over the concert hall capturing the event. I posted mine to 12 Seconds TV.

But there’s something deeper going on. Last week I met up with Leo Laporte and talked about it.

Along for the ride were two documentary film producers. Their results? A video called “the new dial tone.” One of which, Marc Ostrick, was one of the film makers that worked on Obama’s campaign film last year.

What were they holding? Two low-cost cameras (none of which cost more than $200). One is a Kodak Zi8, which is a camera I’ve been using lately on my own Blip channel.

Anyway, they put together a documentary film of the Blog World Expo last week that is absolutely marvelous. In it you’ll see a ton of the biggest names and old-school, but making new media, brands like CNN in social media.

Thanks to Marc and Michael Sean Wright for letting me be part of this.

You can see the revolution happening right in front of you.

What’s another example of this revolution? Watch this separate video with the CEOs of SmugMug and Animoto (filmed on my $180 Kodak Zi8, again) where they show how ANYONE can create very high quality videos with just some photos and video clips. No skills needed. (The new SmugMug/Animoto features were announced today).

What other examples of this revolution are you seeing? Or, even better, making?

The biggest loser in the Twitter search deals

No, it’s not FriendFeed, although yesterday didn’t provide any good news to users there who really would love to hear that their community still matters. Google and Microsoft said “no.”

So, who is the biggest loser in the Twitter search deals announced yesterday (First Bing announced it made a deal with Twitter. Then Google jumped in and said “me too.”)


“But didn’t Facebook make a deal with Bing too yesterday?”


But tell me again what market share that Bing has? Somewhere less than 10%. Even if they double that over the next year (hint: they won’t) that means 20%. Now, what’s Google’s market share? Somewhere around 70%, right? So, even if it loses 10% to Bing that still is 60%.

In other words, if you aren’t on Google you don’t exist to most people.

Who doesn’t exist on Google (at least in terms of deals for the firehose feed?)

1. FriendFeed (which is owned by Facebook).
2. Facebook.

Why did this happen?

Well, remember, Microsoft has an advertising deal with Facebook. I bet there’s some funny language in a contract somewhere that is keeping Facebook from making search deals with Google.


So, why does all this search stuff matter for tweets and Facebook status messages?

Well, I keep looking at searches for businesses. Things like if you are looking on Google for “Sushi in Palo Alto, CA.”

See that list? What do you notice about it?

I notice a few things.

1. It feels cold when compared to, say, my Facebook feed. Why is that? No friends!
2. There’s no real time news. Did a great shipment of salmon ship in yesterday? How would I know from this list?
3. There are no offers from restaurant #3. This is where the money is and Google is leaving a TON of it on the table here but Yelp is actually showing the way here — open up Yelp’s iPhone app and you’ll see offers to try to get you into the restaurant.

So, how can Twitter help?

Well, if certain Tweets could be routed to this page, especially ones from my friends who will tell me that, say, Fuki-Sushi has the best fresh fish, well, then, that would be very cool and useful. Even further, what if both restaurants and customers could talk about Fuki-Sushi in real time? When I was in Paris last year we were in a restaurant where rats were crawling on the floor. Wouldn’t you like to know that about a restaurant before you took your date there? Isn’t real time very important? I think so. I want to know what the experience is there now, not last night. My favorite sushi restaurant always has a line. Wouldn’t it be fun to see a Tweet from someone who is there telling you that the line at your favorite place is short right now?

And, couldn’t Twitter be used as infrastructure to deliver offers from the restaurants themselves? Oh, yeah!

But all that isn’t the real reason why Facebook is the big loser.

Facebook has another problem. People think it’s a service for talking to your college friends. Or your close “real world” friends and family. I watch my wife and that’s how she uses it. She doesn’t understand that Facebook needs to move her into their public world so that they can turn on search and enable other cool experiences that will go outside of her little walled garden.

It will be professional publishers that drag people to new use cases. Already people are starting to change their behaviors on Facebook because of celebrity fan pages, which are public.

But where will influential people, celebrities, brands, professional publishers, etc choose to publish? Where their words have a shot at getting at the biggest audiences.

Today that audience is on Google. Google is the prize. Repeat that 50 times.

Twitter, so far, has made a deal with Google. Facebook, so far, has NOT made a deal with Google.

Until Facebook can get around the terms in that advertising deal it signed with Microsoft it is the biggest loser of the day yesterday.