I was wrong

About ten years ago I got the idea that companies were going to need videos for their web sites since people were unlikely to put up with wading through reams of type and would prefer to see moving pictures. If a national group had 100 local outlets then each one should have a couple of minutes of video to personalise them and introduce potential customers to the branch.

At the time the video production companies were not geared up to do this sort of work since they needed thousands of pounds to work on a job, whereas most small companies would probably only be able to pay hundreds. My idea was to do the job for about the price of a page advert in a trade magazine, perhaps £750.

Since then there has been an explosion in the number of companies offering to produce video and now some are advertising a £500 package, cheaper than the bargain basement price I envisaged a decade ago. Yet few companies have videos on their web sites. There doesn't seem to be much work out there.

Potential customers also seem to want a more polished and professional video than I imagined. But it is polished and professional in the style that they saw on tv 20 or 30 years ago. It's not what the professionals are doing now!

It seems to me that so long as the universities continue to run vast numbers of film production schools and there are relatively few opportunities in the shrinking tv and film industries, the situation will get more competitive. Not less.

As an aside, it seems doubly daft for universities to run film production or journalism courses. Firstly there is no point in them (other than financing the university) since there are very few jobs for their graduates, and most of the jobs that do exist are very low paid if they are paid at all. On a more fundamental note, vocational courses such as these, undermine the true purpose of universities as centres of academic learning and ground breaking research. Posted by Jonathan Brind at 03:53