Thursday, August 6, 2015

An Observation...

It's amazing how many "How To" videos on YouTube prominently feature the wannabe teacher's back, or hands, or...

Especially when he's saying "Take this like that and push there..."


1 comment:

Sailorcurt said...

That's not amazing to me...most youtube videos are done by amateurs who have no experience with training or making videos, they are just trying to share their experiences. I've done plenty of those myself.

What's amazing to me is how many professional training books and videos, for which good money is paid, do the same thing.

I can't even begin to recount all the times in my life I was trying to perform an unfamiliar car repair using a haynes or chilton's manual which told me, with no pictures, or pictures zoomed in so tight that I can't really see what they're showing: "Remove the xxxx from the yyyy" leaving me flummoxed: Where is the xxxx? Does it screw on, bolt on, press on, clip on? How, exactly is one to go about removing it?

Very frustrating.

I am a technical trainer by trade. One of the most difficult things for a trainer to do is forget all the "common sense" or "obvious" stuff he knows. What is obvious or common sense to someone who is intimately familiar with the system or procedure may not be common sense or obvious to someone who's never seen one before. And this is especially difficult when creating a training document or video because there's no feedback from the trainee to indicate when they don't understand something.

That's why, when you read my "how to" posts or watch my videos, they are SO detailed and particular. When I'm doing something like that, I go in assuming that the person watching has no idea what they're seeing and are doing it for the first time. But this is a learned skill, it's not something that comes naturally.

Another factor in the amateur "how to" videos is the fact that shooting a good video of the process makes the process itself take three to four times longer than usual. Most people don't bother, they do it pretty much the way they always do it and just film themselves, which means the video itself is often useless because you can't see any details. Then add to that the editing time after taking four or five "takes" of each step of the procedure...and I've found that doing a voice over of the commentary after the fact is much better than trying to use the raw audio from the time of the shoot, which takes even more time.

Taking the time and effort to produce a clear, unobstructed video of a procedure is difficult and time consuming and most people just aren't willing to put in the time.

And, by the way, this is why I haven't done any "how to" posts or videos for several years...I just haven't had the time to invest in them.