Media item

VideoVortex #3 9.Andreas Haugstrup Pedersen

‘A Case for Distributed Video Comments’


Video sharing sites, most notably YouTube, offer video commenting features, but these features break with fundamental traditions of the web. They rely on a centralized structure where the producer is forced to host video with a specific provider if he or she wants to participate in video-based conversations. This stands in staunch opposition to the ways comments on blogs function. There, anyone can participate on equal footing by publishing commentary on their own blogs and then use conversation trackers such as Technorati or technologies such as TrackBacks to assemble a distributed conversation across all blogs, not just those powered by a specific provider.


A working distributed video commenting system based on open standards and open-source technologies will be demonstrated, and we will explore the underlying design of the system to determine how it differs from centralized video commenting services. The system will also be used as a case study for a broader discussion of how to track visual conversations online: What kind of assumptions are present in distributed database models, and do these assumptions foster a certain type of conversation? How do we create interaction design to navigate these visual conversations? Is there even a space for equal access video conversations across domains, or has YouTube taken over to a degree where other ways to handle conversations are doomed to fail?



Andreas Haugstrup Pedersen is a graduate student in the Department of Communication at Aalborg University and an interaction designer at Hoist where he creates online collaboration software. Andreas created his first video commenting system in 2004. In his spare time, he likes to escape the computer world by taking photographs with vintage 35mm cameras.


Instituut voor Netwerk Cultuur
Publication date:
17 November 2010


Institute of Network Cultures
Bilkent University Department of Communication and Design
Original format:
Instituut voor Netwerkcultuur