Thursday, May 29, 2008

Posting Videos on YouTube.

I love YouTube.

I hate YouTube.

The gold prospectors of the 19th century, sifting through silt, mud and rocks in search for the littlest bits of gold and nugget would be very comfortable with YouTube. Just as blogs are replete with navel-gazing tripe, so too is YouTube. Only with sound and shoddy cell phone camera video.

In all seriousness, Youtube is great for martial artists. There is some great footage online these days ranging from historical to educational to "wow, I can't believe she did that!"

Over the years, I've found great drills, new ways of thinking, inspiration, connections with others, and several of my WTSDA friends online.

Of course, we can't have good unless there is also bad. The bad videos are easy enough to avoid, but the flow of comments on YouTube is the absolute dredge of humanity. Comments range from rude to uninformed to a wild combination of both. Factor in our younger generation's inability to fully spell any word longer than three letters, and you find yourself worrying for the future. Truly.

I have no doubt that there are extremely knowledgeable and gifted people on YouTube. The problem is, they are the quiet observers. They have little reason to either participate in fruitless flame wars or expose their own work to the "hayterz." Can you imagine a high ranking Master putting a video of themselves performing a hyung and seeing:

OMFG, dat wuz teh ghey. U shuld fugin kil yurself. i train in BJJ and culd fuk u up.

(The fact that I could craft that sentence with little effort makes me want to see a psychotherapist.)

I have wrestled with the idea of integrating more streaming video into our club's website, using it either for promotional or educational purposes, and I'm really torn on the issue. Firstly, I'm afraid I'm scared of watching this video 5 years later and wondering what I was thinking. I don't need permanent proof that I fail to grasp even the most basic tenets of what I'm purporting to teach.

Secondly, I'm not sure I want to deal with the masses of idiots online. Trust me, I know I'm not that great. Your opinion indicating the same is redundant. I know I can disable comments, but that seems like I'm trying to hide from people exposing my flaws. I'd love to be part of the wave of using YouTube in a positive and productive manner, but I'm not sure I have the energy for it.

So, maybe over the next few weeks, I'll put up some video, even if it does stink. :)
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