There isn’t really much chance of a completely new medium of content coming to the world any time soon.
It’s always pretty much images, sounds, written words or video.
So getting excited about something new is almost certainly going to be in the form of a restraint.
Twitter was character length. Snapchat was the disappearing act. Instagram was no links, images only (until video came into the platform) and until recently it was video length.
But not any more. With the announcement of IGTV, Instagram has effectively decided to start competing with YouTube in the video space – but with one major difference…
IGTV Videos are in Portrait
At this part of the announcement, video fans across the world howled in despair. Some threw their keyboards around, others jumped up and down waving their arms, and still others just patronisingly nodded while thinking “this is doomed” to themselves.
Why? Because most videos are in landscape. TVs are landscape. Movies are landscape. Monitors are landscape. Video cameras are in landscape. And landscape has been the entire video making experience for serious creators for some time now.
This restraint is going to do 1 of 2 like things:
- completely wreck the IGTV platform, making it largely a failure and ultimately requiring Instagram/Facebook to change its mind; or
- develop into a completely new genre of creativity, with talented people around the world figuring out how they’re going to nail this new opportunity to create in a way that’s different to what everyone else is doing.
Personally I like the sound of (2), but I’m not really sure if that’s going to happen.
Get Creative with the IGTV Restraint
Right at the moment I’m still getting my head around how to even conceptualise creating a video in portrait aspect.
The first challenge is that I’m used to landscape – I see things how they’d look wide, rather than narrow – this will hopefully just need some practice.
The second challenge is the execution – simple things like panning around are very different in portrait video if you don’t want your entire audience to get motion sickness.
The third challenge is exploring the new restraint without totally giving up my existing efforts on other platforms, in particular with video.
But personally – I’m hopeful. I think it will be a barrel of fun watching how people start to use the IGTV platform. Already there are creators getting their heads around it, trying out new things, and putting their sharp editing skills to good use.
Will You Be Going for IGTV?
What do you think? Is it going to be a massive fail? Or will you be getting into it to try and secure that initial wave of attention?