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Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Vlogging - For personal use.

(This is the first in what will, hopefully, be a series of blog posts written whilst on holiday in Spain)

When i was last in Spain, two years ago, i recorded a series of video diaries and posted them onto YouTube. Mainly, it must be said, for myself and as a way of reminding myself about the holiday. I have been thinking about doing the same thing this time around. We'll see.
I suspect that, due to limited Internet speed, i'll be doing more blogs than vlogs this time though.

I have looked back on those Spanish videos many times over the past two years and have been very pleased that i bothered to record them. However good your memory, you will always forget some aspect, or detail of a holiday, no matter how good that holiday was. Or, even maybe because of that! So, it is great to be able to remind yourself whenever you want to. I have also been pleased that people have bothered to watch and comment on those videos. I have even had people say to me personally, how much they enjoyed them. That is always very nice to hear and is very encouraging.

Years ago, i used to write and keep a travel diary, whenever i went to somewhere a little out of the ordinary. As did many other people.
How times change!

Over the past few years i have recorded many videos which were originally only meant for purely personal use. Videos that were never really intended to be uploaded to YouTube, or elsewhere. This has been a way for me to record an event, or happening in my life. Such as that Spanish holiday. These videos are often very spontaneous and recorded quickly. But, then some of the best vlogs are recorded that way. Well, in my opinion anyway.

I think that because i've become so used to recording vlogs, during my four years on YouTube, these videos have always come out exactly the same as an "ordinary" "andymooseman" vlog would do. I always record and introduce them in the same way, just in case they do eventually see the public light of day. Apart from that, it just becomes a habit to start a video that way, wherever it is going to end up.

Possibly, because of this, there are very few videos of this type that have not been uploaded to YouTube. That must mean something, although i'm not quite sure what.

For example. I recorded a series of videos about my fathers ill health and subsequent death, earlier this year. These are a perfect example of the type of video i am talking about here, as i never intended them to be seen. Especially, the first couple that i made. They were just a way for me to record something very personal and historical. Albeit the type of history we don't wish to think about.
But, after uploading that first video, i was very pleased and actually uplifted by the comments and general feedback that it got by the viewers. Several people thanked me for posting those videos and said that it reminded them of similar situations that they had faced in the past. Situations in which they had often felt unable to communicate what they themsleves were feeling at the time
This encouraged me to keep recording that series of videos and to continue uploading them.

One reason that i had been, initially, a little hesitant about uploading that first video, was that i didn't want people to think that i was somehow fishing for sympathy. I suspect that this has been a motive for some in the past. But, i'm sure that my viewers and subscribers are smart enough to see right through somebody doing that.

I can honestly say that i am very pleased that i decided to, firstly record those videos and secondly, to actually feel brave enough to upload them to YouTube.
It was a way for me to put my thoughts and feelings of the time onto video. Not everybody would feel comfortable with recording their most stressful and emotional moments and then uploading them for all the world to see. That is not always an easy choice to make and, obviously, has to be a very personal decision.
But, maybe, this goes right to the heart of what vlogging is all about in the first place? Having said that, i would respect anyones decision not to do what i did.

I have often said that i regard vlogging to be a very cathartic experience at times and i've even called YouTube, the psychiatrists couch of the Internet, for that very reason. It gives you a place to say what you want and often something that needs to be said. But, something that you don't always feel able to say to those around you. But, it gets it off of your chest and out into the open.
Vlogging really is a great way of expressing your thoughts, especially at a time of emotional stress and, of course, you are still under no obligation to actually upload, or share those thoughts

But, the reaction you do get, if you do post those videos, might just be more beneficial than recording them in the first place. And greater than you could have imagined.
A problem shared, is a problem halved.


  1. It is interesting what the internet has done to us. Blogs and vlogs that we think are so personal, and why would anybody besides, perhaps, our spouse or our psychologists look at it? find an audience of people who relate to what your going through, and who lend support, even through the simple act of saying, "Yes, I watched, and I understand." Damn, I love this social media stuff.

  2. Ken: I think we've found the same thing. I would never have expected people to be interested in my video ramblings, or even my blogging ramblings. But, what others like is that we are just normal people, like our viewers. And going on from your own blog post. We are also not newspaper columnists, or famous authors. That's why people can & do relate to us. And as you probably guessed, love this social media stuff too.