Netflix Tests Privacy Mode

Netflix is testing a new privacy mode to help save you from your embarrassing viewing habits, and keep your guilty viewing pleasures a secret.

Netflix Tests out Privacy Mode

Netflix Tests out Privacy Mode

The streaming television giant Netflix knows that sometimes you cave and make some horrible late night movie watching decisions… and they’re trying to save you from living with your bad choices for weeks on end.

Netflix is finally testing a privacy mode that will let you keep your guilty viewing pleasures forever a secret. The feature allows you to hide your viewing history from whomever you share your account with and saving you from those embarrassing “suggested titles” that constantly remind you of your horrible viewing habits.

The privacy feature allows users to hide a movie or TV show from their viewing history, recommendations, and social media.

A Netflix spokesperson confirmed the news in a statement, saying, “At Netfilx we continuously test new things. In this case, we are testing a new feature in which a user watching a TV show can choose to view in ‘Privacy Mode’. Choosing that option means the [programme] will not appear in your viewing activity log, nor will it be used to determine recommendations about what you should watch in the future.”

Netflix has yet to say whether the private mode will become a permanent feature, with the firm telling Gigaom, “We may not ever offer it generally.” However, Netflix has said that it will test it in different territories across the globe.

The feature is being tested across all of Netflix’s markets, and tests could go on for a few months, but not every user will have access to it. Cliff Edwards, the company’s new director of corporate communications and technology, said that a general roll-out will very much depend on how the feature performs in these tests. “We may not ever offer it generally,” he cautioned.

What do you think of #Netflix launching its new #PrivacyMode? Will you finally be able to watch those horrible b-movies guilt-free?

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Weird Al Yankovic’s “Mandatory Fun”

Weird Al Yankovic released his latest album, entitled “Mandatory Fun”, on July 15. As promotion for the album, he has released eight music videos over eight days. Take a look!

Weird Al Yankovic's Mandatory Fun

Weird Al Yankovic’s Mandatory Fun

Three decades after his song-parody debut, Weird Al Yankovic is on track to have his first-ever No. 1 album. The final sales numbers won’t be released until later this week, but Billboard magazine has him neck-and-neck with Jason Mraz for the top spot.

Mandatory Fun is a witty and hilarious album that parodies some of today’s biggest hits. In typical Weird Al style, the videos are eclectic and entertaining (and some are also packed to the brim with some pretty hilarious comedians you might recognize).

Titles include “Word Crimes” (Robin’s Thicke’s “Blurred Lines”), “Tacky” (Pharrell’s “Happy”), “Foil” (Lorde’s “Royals”), and “Handy” (Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy”)… just to name a few. Yankovic has released one video per day since dropping the album on July 15th.

Never heard of Weird Al Yankovic? Yankovic released his first album in 1983, just two years after the dawn of MTV. Like so many new artists back then, he used the new medium to his advantage. “MTV was a big part in how I would advertise my albums,” he says. Teenagers watched MTV religiously, so in addition to song parodies, Yankovic made shot-for-shot video spoofs to play off that obsessive familiarity.

Weird Al Yankovic

Weird Al Yankovic

Our favourite #WeirdAlYankovic video from #MandatoryFun is “Word Crimes” which parodies Robin Thicke’s hit “Blurred Lines.”

Tell us what you think of Weird Al Yankovic’s latest album and #8Days8Videos :)

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How To Make a Corporate Video

Do you need to know how to make a corporate video? In this weeks animated video blog we dive into the key items you should consider before getting started.

So you need to know how to make a corporate video? Well, there are a few things you should consider before you begin. Your video needs direction. Make sure you know the message you are trying to convey, the style you are trying to achieve, and the audience you are trying to reach. The best videos are quick, concise, and tailor made to highlight your goals.  You may think all you need is a camera, but great video production encompasses many skills that work with the camera to produce the best possible results. Lighting, location, lenses, audio, and makeup are all equally important. And of course, you need a talented editor to put it all together. Overall, make sure you keep your video simple, short, and meaningful… and if you ever need help, don’t hesitate to call Keywest Video.

Here are some links to other blogs we have written that may be helpful in your search for how to make a corporate video:

Outsourcing: 5 Q’s to Ask Yourself

5 Tips for Choosing a Corporate Video Company

Employees vs. Actors for Your Corporate Video

Testimonial Videos and Business

Internal Videos: Top 5 Benefits

Campaign Goals for Your Video

Promotion Techniques for Your Corporate Video

Corporate Video Production Toronto

Corporate Video Production Toronto

Interested in watching more of our video blogs?  Please subscribe to our site, or follow us on social media.  Keywest releases a new #vlog every week with helpful information and tips.

Are you a business interested in producing your own #CorporateVideo?  Check out our website www.keywestvideo.com, and speak to one of our producers today.  We’ll be happy to hear from you!

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Motion Capture – The New Face In Film

The Rise and Dawn of Motion Capture

Motion capture, also known as “mo-cap,” has been around for the past few decades. The #technology came into light in 2002, when the second “Lord of the Rings” film debuted. The character of “Gollum” portrayed by Andy Serkis was the first mo-cap character to truly come alive on screen.

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On the set of Lord of the Rings, Andy Serkis portraying the character “Gollum”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In order to get “Gollum” to physically react similar to Andy Serkis on screen, Andy must wear Lycra bodysuits and face-mounted cameras to capture the emotions and body language for “Gollum”.

In order to bring “Gollum” to life, Andy had portray dramatically by his facial characteristics to his actions on set. Andy’s face was studied for two and a half years, and the animators had created a whole range of “Gollum’s” expression as templates for Andy to use. Below is a link to how Andy’s physical movements on set creates Gollum’s movements on the computer.

The recent #movie, #DawnOfThePlanetOfTheApes also used #MotionCapture using the same technology, which also stars actor #AndySerkis.

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Behind the scenes of Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes

 

 

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Actor Andy Serkis on the set of Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Matching the actor’s and the character’s facial expressions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once the facial expressions and action shots are complete, it is time to make the magic happen using #ComputerVisualization.

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The process of computer visualization

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the physical actors, to the many different stages of computer generation, the end result of the characters in the movie is strikingly realistic.

Here is a link to how the new #DawnOfThePlanetOfTheApes movie is made, and how motion capture is used in the making of the movie:

Lord of the Rings and Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes aren’t the only two movies that used motion capture, there are many other movies that used “mo-cap” technology. Remember the film “Avatar” by James Cameron? The movie blew audiences away with its motion capture technology and it created a whole different spectrum of advanced technology in the film industry that we didn’t know existed.

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Behind the scenes of “Avatar” using motion capture.

 

 

 

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Motion capture “Avatar”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not every motion capture character is beloved by everybody, for example, Jar Jar Binks from Star Wars was definitely not loved. Here is a link to Jar Jar Binks worst moments:

 

Overall, the film experience has changed so much, and it will keep changing for the better. What we see on screen is what we experience; whether it may be through emotions, visuals, inspiration, relation to characters, and so forth. I personally have a feeling that the experience is getting more and more realistic, like living in a whole different world for two hours.

Television and movies are known to be an escape from reality, we all enjoy the action and the drama which is known to be highly unrealistic, but astonishing to see on screen. Especially when it comes to characters that are so detailed and relatable through their actions and expressions which we couldn’t even imagine a century ago, and that my friends, is the power of motion capture.

If you want to know more about the history of “mo-cap,” you can check out the article “A Brief History of Motion-Capture, from Gollum to Caesar” written by Oliver Lyttelton.

Not every motion capture character is beloved by everybody, for example, Jar Jar Binks from Star Wars was definitely not loved. Here is a link to the characters funny moments

 

Fun Fact: Motion capture isn’t just used for films, it is also used for many different purposes, such as; the military, entertainment, sports, medical applications, validation for computer vision, and robotics. You can check out more information on Wikipedia about the different uses of motion capture.

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Online Video Stats That Will Impress

Video is important. But just how important and influential? Take a look at the list of online video stats below to gauge the impact online video is having on our world, and subsequently, on the advertising industry.

online video statsWhen #consumers latch onto something #advertisers take notice. The power and persuasion of #OnlineVideo is insurmountable and nonnegotiable. There is no other medium out there that has as great of an impact on viewers. Therefore, Reel SEO compiled this impressive list of the top 15 online video stats that #brands should know.

With global ad spending set to double in 2014 (ViralBlog), big business will continue to spend their money on the best methods to get their message out to the public. And although most companies utilize online video in some capacity, brands need to continue to find better and more efficient ways to harness this great tool. Check out these online video stats below to find out why.

15 Online Video Stats To Take Notice Of:

89 million people in the United States are going to watch 1.2 billion online videos today. (ComScore)

Online video users are expected to double to 1.5 billion in 2016. (Cisco)

Only about 24 percent of national brands are using online video to market to consumers. (Kantar Media)

Online video now accounts for 50 percent of all mobile traffic and up to 69 percent of traffic on certain networks. (Bytemobile Mobile Analytics Report)

Consumers give up on an online video if it doesn’t load in two seconds. (University of Massachusetts Amherst and Akamai Technologies)

Users sharing video on retail and brand sites chose Facebook 46 percent of the time, with email accounting for 40 percent and Twitter capturing 14 percent of shares. (Invodo)

Globally, online video traffic will be 55 percent of all consumer Internet traffic in 2016. (Cisco)

52 percent of consumers say that watching product videos makes them more confident in online purchase decisions. (Invodo)

Mobile and tablet shoppers are three times as likely to view a video as laptop or desktop users. (NPD)

Mobile video ads that include social media buttons drive 36 percent higher engagement. (Rhythm NewMedia).

Online video production will account for more than one-third of all online advertising spending within the next five years. (Borrell Associates)

76 percent of marketers plan to add video to their sites, making it a higher priority than Facebook, Twitter and blog integration. (Social Media Examiner)

92 percent of mobile video viewers share videos with others. (Invodo)

More than 1 billion unique users visit YouTube each month, spending more than 4 billion hours watching videos (YouTube).

2 billion video views per week are monetized on YouTube, and every auto-shared tweet results in six new YouTube browsing sessions (ReelSEO).

These online video stats are quite impressive! What do you think?

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YouTube Stats: It’s Presence & Impact

Before YouTube life was just an emotionless rut, right? Well maybe not quite so dramatic. But it has dramatically altered our existence and has shaped the way numerous industries do business. Read these mind numbing YouTube Stats to put things into perspective!

YouTube Stats

http://www.viralblog.com/viral-social-videos/youtube-300-million-hours-watch-time-a-day-is-under-par/

This infographic above gives a nice illustration of the way the world has been shaped by the #internet over the past several decades. Today it seems we think of #YouTube much in the same way we think of running water… it has always been there. For younger generations this may be true, but for the large majority of earths inhabitants it has only been around for a fraction of their lives. Yet it feels so substantial and omnipotent. The YouTube Stats below will give you something to wrap your head around, and show just how present it really is in our lives.

YouTube stats directly from their website:

  • More than 1 billion unique users visit YouTube each month
  • Over 6 billion hours of video are watched each month on YouTube—that’s almost an hour for every person on Earth
  • 100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute
  • 80% of YouTube traffic comes from outside the US
  • YouTube is localized in 61 countries and across 61 languages
  • According to Nielsen, YouTube reaches more US adults ages 18-34 than any cable network
  • Millions of subscriptions happen each day. The number of people subscribing daily is up more than 3x since last year, and the number of daily subscriptions is up more than 4x since last year

The following was found at Jeffbullas.com:

  • More video is uploaded to YouTube in one month than the 3 major US networks created in 60 years
  • 70% of YouTube traffic comes from outside the US
  • In 2011, YouTube already had more than 1 trillion views
  • And in 2011 there were almost 140 views for every person on Earth

That’s a lot to wrap your head around! It’s no wonder why we feel like nothing existed before YouTube. It engulfs many of our lives because video is a powerful medium. It has the ability to teach us, shock us, and make us laugh.

What do you think you would do without YouTube (or a similar site)? Would your life go on without it or would you feel a void? Let us know your thoughts!

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Team Members: What We Look For

Key West Video Inc. is a well established, and growing, source for corporate video production. We are always looking for new talented and creative minds to add to our team.

teamOur #team has been growing steadily over the past several years, and we are thrilled to have brought aboard several fantastic new employees. From videographers, to photographers, editors to motion graphics experts, producers and script writers, we strive to work with the best of the best.

When it comes to new team members, be it full time employees, contract work, or #freelancers, there are several key factors that we look for when deciding on who to represent our company. The Key West brand is one that we have fostered over the years, and take pride in providing our clients with an exceptional service. That is why we only wish to work with individuals who are able to deliver our clients the service they have come to know and expect from us.

1) Customer Service

Above all else, we at Key West Video believe in exceptional customer service. Although most wouldn’t think of video production when they think of great service, we think that they should. A well run, and well organized company, no matter what the industry, should focus on customer service at their core. We understand that “your customers are what will keep you in business. If they’re not happy they’ll leave and go to your competition.” Course Park Therefore it is important to us that someone who is going to join our team understand and appreciates that customer service is and will always be a focus of the Key West team.

2) Creative Thinker

Having #creative team members goes beyond just the traditional uses in our industry, and we know and harness this information. Of course, when we hire a #videographer or motion graphics #editor, we want them to be creative. We want them to be able to think outside of the box when it comes to getting the best shot, or deciding on how to visually show a simply process. Beyond that though, we believe creative individuals work better. Joshua Turner reiterates this on his blog by stating, “Creative people think from different perspectives and ask questions that can be quite pertinent from a customer’s point of view.” That’s just some of the reasons why we look for creative thinkers for our team.

3) Personality

When it comes to finding quality team members that work well with the rest of our crew, personality makes all the difference. we can teach you new techniques, we can show you how we like things done, but we cannot however alter someones personality. That is why our interviews consist of a back and forth dynamic that allows us to see how individuals respond to our atmosphere here. We would never hire a team member or even freelancer without vetting them through this process.

It is integral to us that the Key West Video brand remains the strong name that many of our clients have come to know and love. That is why we pay special attention when looking for our new team members.

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Outsourcing: 5 Q’s to Ask Yourself

When deciding if outsourcing your video production is right for you, think about these 5 questions.

outsourcing Outsourcing video production to professionals is always the preferred method. But if you’re looking to record a simple training session, talking head video, or weekly video blog, then you could realistically shoot your own videos and save money in the process.

As project visions get grander in scale, and budgets get tighter though — at some point, the time you invest in-house can begin to outweigh the money you saved by using the DIY approach. Saving money is great, but you wear a lot of hats already, and at some point you have to get back to actually doing your job, and not sweating the small stuff.

1. Will the video be longer than 60 seconds?

All videos under 60 seconds in length retain at least 60% of viewers by video’s end, according to Wistia. Shorter, tighter, and more direct videos are getting greater attention online. No longer is the day when videos need to tell the entire story. They simply need to capture the interest of the video, and pull them in to want to find out more. In addition to that production costs have decreased substantially in the past decade making it more affordable to hire professionals for a reasonable cost.

2. Is there a lot of editing involved?

When it comes to editing some people believe all you need is a software and youtube ‘how to’ videos. And while this may be useful for the production of straightforward edits, a polished and professional video requires so much more. The expertise and experience of a professional editor will bring to the table a wealth of knowledge, and numerous techniques which will bump of the production value of your video.

3. Is this a weekly project?

If for example you are shooting a weekly, simple video which will be distributed internally, then maybe doing it yourself is an option. That is if you have the time. But when it comes to a one off project, or something that needs to be put forward in he right way, then outsourcing the video is a must. Outsourcing the project means you don’t have to worry. You can leave it to the experts and know it will get done.

4. Are my video goals being reached?

You may have the skills to shoot, edit, and upload your video to the appropriate channels, but are your overall goals being reached? Are you converting viewers into purchasers? Is the video allowing consumers to get a sense of your company? Is the training video showing the best possible way to do something? If the answer is even a slight no, then you really need to consider outsourcing your production needs.

5. Do I need fresh ideas?

Lastly, when it comes to video production ideas can become stale fast. You can go from having great ideas to none in no time. Alternatively what you think may be a great idea may turn out to bite you in the end if it doesn’t help you meet your goals. Taking the time to search out different production companies and find the right one for your needs is a good idea. Outsourcing can be a great benefit, and once you find the right partners you will never know how you did it without them!

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Campaign Goals for Your Video

Creating an awesome video for your customers is not enough. You need to think about the campaign as a whole from the start. This means taking the time to step back and plan your campaign strategy before you get started with the video itself.

CampaignOut of the Box, a video production company in Perth, Australia state in their blog, “Only after you clearly define all of  your objectives can you tailor a perfect strategy to achieve them.” Here at Key West Video we completely agree with this.

Our clients often ask us what makes a great video. There are so many different elements that come together to create an amazing story, great production value and a solid concept. But the fact of the matter is if you want your video to be distributed optimally, you need to think about your video as part of a larger campaign.

Target Your Audience

Plan your video with your target market in mind. Everything from how long the video should be, to the gender of the voice-over artist you choose, should be tailored to your audience. When it comes to the campaign, and distributing your content, make sure to decide on the best avenues to reach your audience.

Create a Specific Message

What message do you want to send with your video? Buy our product so we can get rich is not a good strategy. Step into your audiences shoes and determine what they would want to know, what they would like to see, and the best way to get that message across. Your message should not only be an integral part of your video, but a part of the larger campaign as well. Other aspects of your marketing strategy should be co-branded with the video. For example, change up your Facebook display picture to coincide with the new video, create a whitepaper with the same characters from your video, use photos or screen captures from the video to put on branded material.

Measure Your Success

The point of a campaign is to get your brand noticed. Without setting specific goals and finding out if you met those goals, then you will never truly know the success of your campaign. Check out this great article on Innovid to learn more about how to measure the success of your video marketing campaign.

Remember, video is a fabulous marketing tool that can serve a wide variety of purposes. However, videos by themselves need to be part of a larger story. Focusing on the audience, the message, and how you will track it all, will aid you when putting together your next video marketing campaign.

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Shots, Shots, Shots: The Shot List

Without a shot list filming can be all over the map, and the editing process a disaster. So here is the how and why to creating an excellent shot list which will keep your shots organized, focused, and propel your production to the next level.

shotsA #ShotList is a way to plan out your production before you ever press the record button. On Tovia Balo’s blog he writes that, “the shot list is important as it helps the director and camera operators keep track of all the shots needed, and makes sure that they have enough filmed and enough shots to create a specific mood and feel.” 

Shot lists will vary depending on the #production type, style and budget. The general format however includes the timing, description of action, camera directions, list of location and talent needed in each shot, references to audio (whether scripting, sound effects, interview questions etc.), and space for any additional notes.

When it comes to what shots to include and how to go about following a shot list on the day, remember these two things; prioritize, and be flexible. They will save you trouble and allow you to get the best shots possible. Here’s why.

Prioritize

Know that not all shots are created equal. If you have a long day and a limited time to get what you need, then make sure you structure your shot list so that the most important shots are filmed long before the ‘extras’. For example, an establishing shot is not something you want to leave until the last minute. It is the shot that will set the stage for all other shots and needs to be stellar. Douglas Horn says, “Often I’ll list shots that I’d like to have, time-permitting, but can live without if the going gets rough. Knowing the difference is another important function of prepping your shoot.”

Be Flexible

With all the planning in place, make sure you don’t get bogged down by structure. Be open to new and exciting shots that you hadn’t necessarily thought of or planned for. If the opportunity arises and there is potential for a great shot then take it. Of course, don’t go out on a limb for a shot that may not be used and risk missing a shot that you know you require. But if time allows for it step outside of the box. You might end up capturing a moment which you could have never imagined and it may make your production spectacular.

Shot lists are an excellent tool in the production world and are something that #producers, #directors and #DOPs could not live without. Taking the time and investing in the organization and planning of your shots will make all the difference when #filming.

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