Click. “Man, you’ve gotta see this!”
Click. Click. Click.
Online video and Internet TV are quickly becoming integrated into our every-day lives; the “information superhighway” now doubles as our “entertainment expressway.”
According to Internet demographics, nearly everyone’s joining the fun. Grandma can find a “Do-It-Yourself” video guide to getting rid of the junk in her garage while little Jimmy can watch detailed instructions on how to beat the monster at the end of his favorite video game. Dad can watch highlights from the football game he missed last night while mom’s looking for funny baby animal clips. There’s a video for everyone on the web, and it seems that everyone is taking advantage of it.
Millions of Internet users watch their favorite “webisodes” each day – and that number is growing rapidly. Webisodes are specifically made-for- Internet videos just like sitcoms, cartoons, and miniseries. Instead of waiting for a program to come on regular television, people can click on what they want to see and watch it immediately.
Internet users can be casual observers or paid subscribers to sites that exist only for online entertainment; from there, they can e-mail video clips and links to the site to everyone in their address book, which helps the sites grow exponentially. There are countless numbers of sites that provide video hosting services, and more are cropping up every day. The demand is there, so they’re jumping on board the internet’s fastest moving train.
It’s not just meant to be watched, either. Anyone with a video camera and an internet connection can take a chance to grab their own fifteen minutes of fame. The craze sparked by the inception of YouTube has inspired dozens of other sites who promise the same kind of exposure to anyone who wants it.
This online craze raises the question, “Are online video and Internet TV just a fad, or are they here to stay?” The answer is, unequivocally, that they are here for the long haul. The Pew Internet and American Life Project (PewInternet.org) reports that 57% of all adults who have Internet connections have watched or downloaded online videos; 19% of these adults do this on an every-day basis.
As with everything else on the World Wide Web, the instant gratification that online video and Internet TV sites provide is addictive. Anything you want to see is simply a click away. Ten years ago, who would have thought that you could buy the majority of your Christmas presents without even venturing out into the cold? Who knew that businesses, large and small, would rely so heavily on e-mail and internet marketing campaigns?
Whether you’re looking for your own fifteen minutes of fame, wanting to watch someone else’s, or trying to learn something new, the Internet has everything you need in one, neat little package. Since our society is becoming faster-paced with each passing day, we become more and more spoiled by instant gratification; online video and Internet TV sites are much more than a fad. They aren’t going anywhere – until something faster comes along.