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    Videographer: dvds and video files
    #1
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    Hey. So, it finally happened. After years of just making dvds for people, someone asked for a digital copy because they don’t own a dvd player. I’m pretty small fry: a lot of high school, dance recitals, and community theatre. What do you guys do when you shoot something like that? Like, should I just keep on making dvds/blu-rays and tell people “sorry?” Should I maybe get flash drives and offer them that way(my biggest worry is compatibility with whatever device they’d be using to view)? I’m very realistic about copyright and distribution and I REALLY don’t want to send these over the internet or get in trouble for what’s basically just a service I’m doing for parents and teachers, but I know that these teachers certainly haven’t gotten the rights to the music their using(or at least not broadcast rights). Any advice is welcome. Thanks!


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    #2
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    You pretty much touched on all of the points. The only clear choice is riding DVD into the sunset for these types of productions. In my view, flash drives are not an answer as the USB port has never been thought of as a video port. Plus, flash drives involve downloading or acting like a computer user to some extent. What people want is a streaming setup like Netflix. Outside of that I think DVD is the only way forward. It is a shame but as you said, internet distribution is a mine field with the AI searching tech around today.

    I would enjoy hearing alternatives that I can not think of.


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    #3
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    Moving forward, you'll probably find that DVDs will be more and more rare...I haven't made one in 5 years and I see most people don't want one.

    A lot of people/businesses specialize in similar work like wedding videos/etc in which they obviously don't have the rights to certain music (and/or other things), but still move forward with the use/editing.

    Some provide their work via a private/password-protected link. (Because if someone uploads it on their end, it would be the same like ripping a DVD and uploading it.)

    The best advice you could receive from anyone is not to use anything without permission, but it would of course affect your business model/final products.


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    Having produced dance recital/music/play videos for over two decades, I can't tell you how many times I overheard moms at the venue discussing how "I'll buy one, and you can just copy it" - probably more with VHS back in the day than DVD, but the point is - if an .mp4 file gets out there to a single parent, how easy is it to make limitless copies? Much easier than copying a DVD for the average person. Just not the best delivery model.

    I stopped doing those jobs last year, so I don't have to worry about it thankfully. Wish I had an easy answer. Can probably set up digital delivery via Amazon or something, but as you said, you don't want to push the luck with copyright issues by putting the product "out there" in that manner. Tough decisions. I quit because most parents were happy to just use their phones to record, with instant upload. I gave up fighting progress.

    Jeff


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    #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickflix View Post
    Hey. So, it finally happened. After years of just making dvds for people, someone asked for a digital copy because they don’t own a dvd player. I’m pretty small fry: a lot of high school, dance recitals, and community theatre. What do you guys do when you shoot something like that? Like, should I just keep on making dvds/blu-rays and tell people “sorry?” Should I maybe get flash drives and offer them that way(my biggest worry is compatibility with whatever device they’d be using to view)? I’m very realistic about copyright and distribution and I REALLY don’t want to send these over the internet or get in trouble for what’s basically just a service I’m doing for parents and teachers, but I know that these teachers certainly haven’t gotten the rights to the music their using(or at least not broadcast rights). Any advice is welcome. Thanks!
    I make DVD's still as my market is more human interest and historical documentaries. Most of my market is older people in their 60s and over who don't know much about the new technology or can't afford it. I do offer digital downloads as well and sell them about a few dollars less and will give the customer a few options. I will either make them a digital version for their specific device such as iPhone iPad etc or I'll put it on a thumb drive for them to take home.

    I also have backups on DropBox etc so I can always send that customer a download with a secure one time password if they are afraid they might lose the thumb drive for example.


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    #6
    Senior Member Cary Knoop's Avatar
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    Making a flash drive using H.264 within MP4 is pretty standard and should play on almost all devices.


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    #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cary Knoop View Post
    Making a flash drive using H.264 within MP4 is pretty standard and should play on almost all devices.
    Then how come in Adobe media encoder there are multiple presets such as "720 HD iPad" and "720 HD iPhone" etc? There are 30 presets for every device out there in media encoder.


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    #8
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    Making the mp4 file is the least of your worries. Stick a USB drive in a not so recent TV and see if it plays the video. Or stick a USB in an I-Phone. Dealing with the general public and "files" is a sticky proposition. YouTube or Netflix is the type of interface they are most comfortable with. No problems when a simple person asks as they probably know what they want to do with it but not for general sale imho.


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    I don't use DVDs anymore. I send clients links from my Mediazilla account which they can download the video to whatever medium they want. Depending on client some may send a hard drive and I send footage back to them.


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    #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by offbeatbryce View Post
    Then how come in Adobe media encoder there are multiple presets such as "720 HD iPad" and "720 HD iPhone" etc? There are 30 presets for every device out there in media encoder.
    Because Adobe products are designed by morons for the most part. Most of those presets are pretty much the same, and are mostly mislabeled. If you are doing this sort of work, it would behoove you to spend some time educating yourself on video compression and don't bother using any of those presets.


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