What Is Vlogging (and How to Get Started)
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Syndicating a Video

OK, you've got your video and you've managed to get it online. Now, how are you supposed to notify people it's there? Simple. Really Simple. Really Simple Syndication. Yup. RSS...aka big buzzword of the year. If you already have a blog, you can skip over the next paragraph. If not, read on.

There are a ton of blog sites out there, and just as many options. You can host your own blog (on your own server), pay someone to host it for you, or use any number of free or pay blog services. Which solution you choose is completely up to you. A couple of the services you might want to look at are:

So, you've got your video and you've got your blog. Now you need to marry the two together. How? Easy. Simply create a new Post on your blog, optionally describe your video, and link to your video file using the following HTML snippet: <a href="http://www.domain.com/Video/MyVideo.mov">watch it</a>. Replace the "http://www.domain.com/Video/MyVideo.mov" with the actual location of the video you'd like people to download (remember that URL you were holding onto?). So, if you've posted to your iDisk, you'd replace it with something like "http://homepage.mac.com/YourName/Video/MyVideo.mov"

After posting to your blog, go to your blog's public homepage and copy the RSS link that allows people to subscribe to your site. You will find the link under a heading like "Syndication" or "Syndicate this site." Some blogging tools, such as Blojsom (included in OS X Tiger Server) or MoveableType, will provide enclosures automatically. If you are using a blogging tool that doesn't automatically provide enclosures, like Blogger, then you can use FeedBurner to enable your feed for podcasting through the use of their free SmartCast service. In such a scenario, you will want to copy the URL that FeedBurner provides to you, instead of the one your blogging tool provides.

Informing iTunes

figure 5 The Podcasts link in iTunes
figure 6 The Publish a Podcast link in iTunes

If you'd like your video feed to appear in the iTunes Music Store, under the Podcasts section, you'll need to create an account. If you've ever purchased music from the store, then you have an account. Once you have an account, from within iTunes go to the Music Store and click on the Podcasts link.

Once you're in the Podcasts section, click on the Publish a Podcast link. It should be located in the same area you initially found the Podcasts link.

Next, enter the URL to your blog's syndication feed, in full including the "http://"; this is the RSS/FeedBurner URL you obtained earlier. After you clickthe Continue button, iTunes attempts to parse your feed to make sure it's valid. After the validation, you are asked to enter additional information, including the Category for your feed. Since there's no Video category, you can select whatever category most closely suits your taste. Alternatively, you can select the Audio Blogs feed, if you plan to distribute a diverse set of videos.

figure 7 The Publish a Podcast link in iTunes

If you plan to post content that might be considered Explicit, including foul language, check the appropriate box. Once you've entered the requisite information, click the Publish button and wait for your feed to be approved. But you don't have to wait for approval to get your feed into iTunes.

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