As you may recall, all of my past articles have dealt with preparing video for the Web. They’ve gone over everything from shooting the video to encoding it to a reduced file size to where to host the movie. There is one aspect that has been omitted from the process though and that is post-production (also known as video editing). Whether it’s a home video clip or a professional movie, editing allows the user to cut unwanted scenes, add sound and music and cut the overall length of the video to show only the pertinent parts. For example, if you’re videotaping on a holiday, there could be several hours of recording. So, by editing the video, a two to four hour movie could show just the funny bits and/or the most interesting memories!
Jumpcut.com is a revolutionary Web site in the field of hosting videos online and it’s also part of the Yahoo! company. Apart from being extremely straightforward from creating an account to attaining a hosted online presence for your movie, it also allows online editing of the movie. This means there is no requirement to install any software to edit the movie, such as Adobe Premiere, for example. The site not only hosts the movie clip, but it also provides video editing tools online. Jumpcut.com is a complete video authoring package. It’s free and available to all users, whether you’re a seasoned professional or an amateur who just wants to view video footage online.
The registration process is very quick, but it does require a Yahoo! member account. To get one, go to Yahoo!’s homepage at www.yahoo.com  and click on the Sign In link. Again, this is quick and it will take just a few minutes to activate a Yahoo! account. When that’s done, go back to the Jumpcut.com homepage and click the Register link located at the top left of the page. Enter in your Yahoo! ID and password in the box on the right and click Sign In again. Now, there are two choices on the Jumpcut.com page here. If this is your first time visiting the Jumpcut.com Web site, simply look at the right option, which states “Create a new JumpCut account.” The option on the left that says “Link your existing JumpCut account” can be done later. It just simply allows you to log in via your Yahoo! ID rather than the JumpCut user ID. Click on “Create a new account.”
Now, this is where the fun begins.
I have blanked out my personal details with red boxes, but the initial screen can be seen above. Immediately from here, it is time to upload your movie and start the hosting process. Upload what is desired, such as your photos or videos. From here, click on “Go to upload” to enter the member screen. Here you can see the bio on the right showing the movies, personal picture and the personal JumpCut Web site address. This address was shown in the screenshot above and it is very important. If it is desired to promote the movie online, people just need to click on that address. Send it to a friend and it will soon transpire how great this site is for the video enthusiast.
Inside the member screens, there is an editor you can use to work with the uploaded video and photos. From here, it is possible to arrange the video clips and add some neat effects to give that extra fun FX element to the movie. Bear in mind though, it is not required to encode the movie before uploading it. Once the video footage is dumped to the hard drive from the camera, you can start uploading clips.
The screenshot below will keep you informed on the number of completed movies, clips, photos, audio clips, etc. It will also tell you about people in the Friends list who have been added while sharing your video clips.
Extra Tip: Keep a similarly laid out set of folders on the PC. Create a folder called JumpCut and create sub-folders in there by the names on the left for Movies, Clips, Photos, Audio and so on. This will retain organization locally, as well as, online, instead of having the files scattered around on your hard drive.
Next, click on “Edit your profile.” This is found below the member name on the top left. This opens the My Profile screen, where a picture can be uploaded, as well as, some bio details, such as filming experience or personal interests. The E-mail Upload Code box allows a personalized e-mail address to be accessible. This is great, as there is no requirement to log into the site to upload and work with movies. If a clip is to be uploaded, it can simply be e-mailed to the address given here and it will appear in the list shown above.
The next task is to upload the video and audio clips, photos, etc. Clicking on Upload in the top right corner next to Create opens a screen where this is done very easily. There is a nice big green Upload button here, though if any issues occur at all, simply move the mouse pointer over the Any Questions? link in the bottom right corner.
Clicking the Upload button opens a browse window for selecting files from the PC. Select one, click OK and choose Public or Private and give the file a set name. This is the set to which this file will belong. Video files can be large in size if they have not been encoded (reduce file size) in software like Adobe Premiere or the free Riva Encoder I discussed in a previous article. It may take some time, though, to ensure that the file size is below 100 MB. Before selecting the file to upload, roll the mouse over it in the PC window’s folder. If the size is below 100 MB, it is okay for uploading.
Once all the files are uploaded, click Create. Files can also be uploaded from here inside the editor from the Open the editor link. This allows clips to be uploaded while working with the editor on currently uploaded files. This is useful if upon suddenly deciding that a clip is missing during editing. Editing here, by the way, is an easy process. Do not worry, it is a click, drag and drop process so smooth, the edited movie will be completed with ease.
There is a great introductory training video on the right and it is worth watching, as it quickly covers the whole editing process. Remember, there is no requirement to edit. Show the unedited footage uploaded, if desired. The editor is there simply to allow the member to indulge in some finer aspects of the movie post-production stage. From the “Use one of the sets” box, you can select the set name given to the uploaded clips and photos. If there is any lack of clarity at all, don’t worry. Just use the Start the Wizard option at the top of the page. This will cover the entire cycle from uploading the movie to editing to publishing on the JumpCut site.
Next, click on My Page to view the personal Web site with the video. Click Explore to go looking for other videos on the JumpCut site. Take a look at the Groups menu item and find out about other similar movies. There are various groups and each member can create a personalized group for others to join. If you fancy it, have a crack at the contests too!
For those heavy mobile phone users out there, remember, since there is an upload e-mail address given, any clips recorded can be e-mailed from your mobile phone to the e-mail address mentioned above. This automatically sends the clip directly to the JumpCut site member account. Now, how cool is that?!
The ability to have a free Web site address that hosts your own videos that can be shared with anyone is brilliant news for the avid video camera user. It has never been easier to upload, edit and publish videos to the Web. Jumpcut.com has surely taken awareness of online video to a wider audience. Have fun in the movies, my friends!
~ Stephen Davies