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Encyclopedia > Videosift
VideoSift
URL http://www.videosift.com
Type of site Video Community
Registration Free, but with optional Charter Membership
Owner Brian Houston
Created by Brian Houston and James Roe
Launched February 2006

Videosift is a "video aggregator" designed to showcase unique and interesting videos, the name of the site being a direct allusion to the metaphor of sifting wheat from chaff. It was founded by Brian Houston in February 2006, who was quickly joined by James Roe as a co-founder. Members submit embedded videos from other websites, such as YouTube and Google Video, which are then ranked according to a social-voting system similar to and inspired by Digg. Nicknamed the Sift, Videosift aims to provide its users with the best available online video content through a consistent and attractive interface, responding to the problems of videos being scattered among many different sources, each having arguably difficult or unintuitive user interfaces. Uniform Resource Locator (URL) is a technical, Web-related term used in two distinct meanings: in popular usage, it is a widespread synonym for Uniform Resource Identifier (URI)—many popular and technical texts will use the term URL when referring to URI; in strict technical usage, it is a subset... Species T. aestivum T. boeoticum T. compactum T. dicoccoides T. dicoccon T. durum T. monococcum T. spelta T. sphaerococcum References:   ITIS 42236 2002-09-22 For the indie rock group see: Wheat (band). ... Chaff is the seed casings and other inedible plant matter harvested with cereal grains such as wheat. ... YouTube is a popular free video sharing website which lets users upload, view, and share video clips. ... Google Video is a free Google service that allows anyone to upload video clips to Googles web servers as well as make their own media available free of charge or through Google Video Store for a cost that they can set. ... Digg is a community-based popularity website with an emphasis on technology and science articles, recently expanding to a variety of other categories such as politics and videos. ...

Contents

Concept

Members submit videos from a limited selection of approved hosts, these videos are then entered into a queue where other members may vote them up or down. If a video receives the requisite balance of positive votes it is published to the front page and remains available in the site's archives; if it fails to achieve this within 4 days it is discarded. A broad range of videos may be posted; only those with entire episodes of television programs, pornography, fatalities or racism are expressly prohibited.[1]


While in its infancy the site was loosely organized; the site founders allowed any user to submit videos, subject to an ever-changing limit depending on the volume of traffic. With the exponential growth of the site's popularity over the course of 2006, upgrades were introduced leading to Videosift 2.0 and later iterations that required new users to graduate through a "probationary period". This was meant to mitigate sockpuppet and astroturfing abuses that became more tempting for outsiders considering the site's increasing popularity. This article describes sock puppets in general. ... In politics and advertising, the term astroturfing describes formal public relations (PR) campaigns which seek to create the impression of being a spontaneous, grassroots behavior. ...


Routine administrative functions such as discarding expired videos are carried out by a bot named Siftbot[1]. Internet bots, also known as web robots or simply bots, are software applications that run automated tasks over the internet. ...


No-self links policy and the Siftoff

Videosift has a policy of "no self-links", which means contributing videos that the Videosift user ("Sifter") created themselves. In addition to functioning as a means to prevent astroturfing, it allows for an extra step of "sifting" - a third party must first approve of the video by selecting it for submission before the original creator can cast a vote for it. In politics and advertising, the term astroturfing describes formal public relations (PR) campaigns which seek to create the impression of being a spontaneous, grassroots behavior. ...


In response to Sifters' desire to showcase their own videos, occasional Siftoffs have been held, with the first in May of 2006. Videos in the Siftoff are uploaded to a separate queue where users have a month to decide, through the normal voting mechanisms, which video of this subset group is most worthy.


Curatorship through seniority

One of the unique aspects of the Videosift community is that the volunteer members receive de facto administrator powers with long term commitment to the website. After 50 of their videos are published to the front page, members gain such abilities as discarding posts in violation of guidelines or flagging videos NSFW. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...


The ability to "downvote" a video was introduced in June 2006,[2] allowing the Sifter with a moderate seniority level - those with a bronze star meaning 10 published videos, to police against videos they consider unworthy or unappealing. Downvoting met with some controversy as users adjusted to the phenomenon, and set informal guidelines on usage.


Technology

VideoSift is based on an open source content management system called Pligg, which is in turn a port of software written by Ricardo Galli[2]. His software received much of its inspiration from the popular technology site, Digg. Digg is a community-based popularity website with an emphasis on technology and science articles, recently expanding to a variety of other categories such as politics and videos. ...


Prominent and skilled users have been invited to join the original two founders throughout the Sift's history. Rommel Santor became the Development Manager later in 2006, contributing his skills in coding to add extensive new features to the site's codebase.


Accepted video embeds

For compatibility reasons Videosift accepts only videos in the Flash format, and only from the following websites: FLV (Flash Video) is a proprietary file format used to deliver video over the Internet using Adobe Flash Player (formerly known as Macromedia Flash Player) version 6, 7, 8, or 9. ...


Youtube, Break.com, Revver, Vimeo, MetaCafe, Google Video, iFilm, MySpace, and Grouper. YouTube is a popular free video sharing website which lets users upload, view, and share video clips. ... The 2006 Break. ... Revver is a video sharing website that hosts user-generated content. ... Vimeo is a video-sharing site which launched in November 2004. ... Metacafe website Metacafe desktop application Metacafe is a video and media sharing community on the internet. ... Google Video is a free Google service that allows anyone to upload video clips to Googles web servers as well as make their own media available free of charge or through Google Video Store for a cost that they can set. ... iFilm is an online archive of short films, movie trailers, and other video clips of interest. ... MySpace is a social networking website offering an interactive, user-submitted network of friends, personal profiles, blogs, groups, photos, music, and videos. ...


Video organization

As soon as a video receives the required amount of votes it is published to the front page, which is arranged in reverse chronological order. Videos can be further filtered by the user according to most votes in a year, month, week, 24 hours and all time.


With the launch of VideoSift 2.2 'channels' were added to browse by and filter out videos by their respective categories. Currently these are: Animation, Art, Comedy, Cute, Geek, Music, Nature, Politics, Vintage, and Viral. A video may be in as many channels as are applicable.


International Sifts

In response to user interest and the availability of volunteers, VideoSift Poland and VideoSift Latina were also set-up in 2006. The sites cross-link to each other, sharing videos that have cross-cultural appeal while maintaining separate identities and user groups in relation to each other.


Notes

  1. ^ Posting Guidelines videosift.com
  2. ^ The Power of the Down Vote videosift.com

External links

  • PCWorld names VideoSift "Most Useful Video Aggregation Site" of 2006
  • VideoSift website
  • VideoSift Top 100 Web Videos of 2006
  • Sifttalk post on VideoSift 2.2
  • The Wall Street Journal article on VideoSift
  • The Sunday Times, UK on VideoSift
  • Polish TV News on VideoSift
  • VideoSift Contributors
  • VideoSift FAQ
  • WorldTV Internet Charts
  • CNET News.com on VideoSift

 
 

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