2020: The Year of Video Proof

Video connects us. From lighthearted TikToks and Zoom happy hours to the sobering images from Black Lives Matter protests and the insurrection at the US Capitol, moments captured in video drive our conversations and shape our opinions.

The social isolation and turmoil of 2020 only reinforced the importance of meaningful connection and shared experiences. While we continue to be physically isolated from each other, journalism and technology have kept us current and engaged with the world around us. Reliable information has been crucial in the face of an ongoing global pandemic and tumultuous political climate.

However, bias and misinformation has called journalism’s ability to provide impartial, transparent information into question. With the very definition of truth up for debate, we saw a meaningful increase in video usage and viewership as people looked for ways to validate the news with their own eyes.


More Video Means More Video Clips

At SnapStream, we saw increases across all our usage metrics in 2020 - from video recording and search to clip production and social sharing.

SnapStream customers created 25% more clips compared to the prior year, with a significant uptick in the months preceding the presidential election. News outlets, think tanks, and other media providers leveraged key moments to inform and persuade voters as they navigated a relentless influx of both facts and fiction.


SnapStream Clips Created 2020 v. 2019

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Video clips killed the cable news star

Video clips are rapidly transforming the way political and cultural commentary is generated and circulated. Statements and actions by prominent figures that might have otherwise gone unnoticed and unremarked upon after being aired just once or twice on cable television are now increasingly being identified, surfaced, commented on, and spread around online.

This new phenomenon of video clip-based online journalism and commentary is bootstrapping a new kind of scaffolding better suitable for our more rapidly responsive public discourse. Video clips shared on social media are enabling a more visceral, richer, and more accessible many-to-many conversation about today’s most pressing issues of social concern that goes well beyond what the one-to-many medium of cable television can facilitate.

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What’s New in SnapStream 9.6

We’re excited to announce SnapStream 9.6, which adds support for recording audio-only streams and includes more than 80 bug fixes and stability improvements delivering increased uptime and a smoother experience.

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Five Steps to Find Your Voice with Evan Gregory of The Gregory Brothers

Since graduating recently from Rice University, guest writer Juliette Richert is continuing her education by listening to as many podcasts about politics, culture, and society as she can get her hands on.

Much of America wondered how we were going to process two presidential town halls that replaced the cancelled debate during the 2020 presidential campaign. In response, the Gregory Brothers, in collaboration with Darren Criss, used video effects to create “an alternate reality,” where the opponents sang their arguments to each other. These melodies were created by “songifying” found footage, which is the process of applying audio pitch correction to the spoken voice to make it sound like music. The video gives you a pretty good idea of what both candidates discussed in reality (at their separate town halls), and the music is likely to get stuck in your head.

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Customer Spotlight - Media Matters for America

In our Customer Spotlight series, we highlight SnapStream customers and the important work they are doing.

With the world at our fingertips, it’s more important than ever to know what news you can trust. Launched in May 2004, D.C. based Media Matters for America is dedicated to stopping the spread of misinformation in the U.S. media. In order to monitor, analyze, and correct conservative misinformation,  MMFA produces both rapid-response pieces and long-form, analytics-based research.

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Feature Friday: Chris Winton


Chris visiting NASA for our Houston scavenger hunt in 2015 - he won the most points!

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Feature Friday: Patrick Conway


My milkshake brings all the bugs to the yard...

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Content Meets Context: The Power of Video with Aaron Rupar

Since graduating recently from Rice University, guest writer Juliette Richert is continuing her education by listening to as many podcasts about politics, culture, and society as she can get her hands on.

Given Aaron Rupar’s half a million Twitter followers, his work is obviously popular, but why? As a millennial, I haven’t turned on cable TV in more than 5 years. Like much of my generation and the country, I get my news from the Internet and social media. Using short videos to share news stories on his Twitter feed and in his writing with Vox, Rupar connects Internet and social media users to the world of TV watchers, shedding light on the filter through which much of America receives news and information.

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