Standards for Distributing Video

3 Jul

Unfortunately, one of the things many American companies stand out for in international panels is the quality of their video.  And not in a good way: subpar video quality, a failure to adhere to required formats, an unusual (for international viewers) use of montages or overlaid music, and other issues plague the perception of American companies abroad.

Here is a quick primer, though by no means comprehensive, on what companies from the U.S. should do to make sure their video adheres to international standards.

There are two categories: DVDs and online.

First of all, sometimes DVDs are necessary.  Using DVDs bypasses limitations on international streaming in certain countries.  And of course, sometimes panels still require hard media in the application process.  It’s a good idea to have quality labeling (not just Sharpied with the company name) ready to send out so there’s not a last-minute scramble to get it done.  Think of your DVD as another tool in your international marketing toolbox.

Which brings up the question of which format: NTSC or PAL?  NTSC is best.  Although PAL is primarily used in Europe, most of the DVD players there have the ability to read NTSC.  And NTSC-only DVD players are fairly common.  To stay on the safe side, stick with NTSC.

American Dance Abroad still uses DVDs or at least until our supply of logo embossed DVD folders are gone! We will, though, begin to distribute more space-efficient USBs at international marketplaces.  So, how should you send us your videos?  Click here for detailed instructions.

What type of video should I send?  Obviously, follow instructions above all else.  Here are some general guidelines:  If a programmer has requested video from you, send one full length work and one excerpt with no montages or overlaid music.  Film your dances in HD and don’t downgrade the quality when you upload your video.  If you are filming a proscenium work, do so from the center of the house if possible – close enough to make out the dancers but not so close that the structure of the work is lost.


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