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A Rich Media Tip

Posted on 11.14.2007
Often I visit major media websites to comb for my daily dose of news. More and more, these sites are providing video as a means of delivery - and only video. But sometimes I just want to scan an article and not sit through an entire video, much less wait for it to load and then watch a 30-second advertisement. What many of these sites are failing to do is provide me with an alternative, or at least an easy-to-find alternative.

In a Web where there are so many other choices than your website, it's a good idea to provide all of those alternatives to your site visitors before they go somewhere else. If you're running video, provide a text-only version of the same content. The same goes for a podcast. Video is great, and becoming a necessary addition for both media delivery and universal search but it shouldn't cost your users their time or convenience.

A good example is CBSnews.com. There you can click to a story and get both a written recap along with photos and a video.

There are many transcription services available, most charge by the minute and according to sound quality and number of speakers. Transcribe Now is one such service that offers flexible pricing and quick turnaround times. There is always the option to hire a freelancer - GetAFreelancer.com and RentACoder.com offer freelance marketplaces. Of course, if you're dealing with short files, you could always roll up your sleeves and do it yourself. And if you're creating a podcast or video from a script, then you already have your transcription - simply post it next to the video or podcast or provide a link for the text version of your rich media file.


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