Welcome to my Website!
This week we make a Vlog or “Video Blog” to use as the greeting to our websites. Obviously we live in a video age and having your smiling face greet visitors will take your website a long way toward landing that job or internship, winning the ASI election, or achieving whatever your goals are. It can be short. if you were me, you might say something like:
Hi, I’m Glenn Zucman. Welcome to my website! I’m a visual artist in Los Angeles. My Intermedia art practice ranges from robotic projects to online identity activities. I teach art at Long Beach State, and I’m the former host of the arts interview radio broadcasts Strange Angels for KBeach Radio and Border Patrol for American Public Media. I hope you enjoy the work, and just click on the ‘contact’ button if you have questions about anything. Thanks for visiting!
You can use Vimeo, YouTube or whatever you like for this. Editing, graphics, etc are great if you want to do them, but not required. You can simply talk straight into your laptop or phone. If you happen to have a nicer video camera, it’d be worth using it since this is your welcome message to the world and the better it looks, the better!
You don’t upload your video to WordPress, you upload it to YouTube or Vimeo and then embed it on your WordPress. Once you upload it, to embed you just grab the URL for your video and paste it on a new line. If you look in the upper right of your WP edit window (on a laptop) you’ll see 2 tabs “Visual” & “Text”. Sometimes it helps if you switch over to “Text” mode before you paste your video URL. Then you can flip back to Visual mode after that.
Your “About Me” page
- Make an About Me Page on your website (a new “Page” instead of a new “Post”)
- embed your video
- add some bio info
- add some contact info (like a contact form)
- add links to any other material
- add license information for your site: ©2016, or Creative Commons, or Public Domain
- Since this is a Page instead of a Post I won’t see it unless you Add a menu item for it.
All sites really should have About pages with the basics of who’s site you’re looking at, how to get in contact, and so on. You could also put your video in a Sidebar Widget so visitors could see it right on your home page.
For your site license you’re welcome to choose the very restrictive “©All Rights Reserved,” or the very open “Public Domain.” However, for most of you, a “flavor” of Creative Commons license will probably work best. Creative Commons, Non-Commercial, No Derivatives is nearly as restrictive as ©All Rights Reserved, and Creative Commons Attribution is nearly as open as Public Domain. A middle choice that many people like is Creative Commons Non-Commercial. This license means that other people “like you” who want to remix your YouTube video or Flickr Photo or Sound Cloud Song or WordPress essay, are free to do so, but if a for-profit entity like NBC or the New York Times wants to use your work, then they can call you and negotiate a license fee.
Visit Creative Commons.org/choose to select the license terms for your website, and then grab their embed code and paste it on your About page. (sometimes helps to switch to Text mode before you paste the code)
What to “Turn In”
You don’t need to do a blog Post saying that you made an About Me Page. You can just make the page and be sure to add a menu item for it.
It’s not required, but if you don’t already have a LinkedIn page, this would be the perfect time to set one up! LinkedIn is sort of like your resume and your website is your portfolio. It’s nice to have both. Even if you’re a freshman, you’ll be looking for that big career move sooner than you think. Why not start collecting your achievements and making links to peeps now? Plus there’s that summer internship you can apply for. BTW LinkedIn “contacts” are pretty much like Facebook “friends.” Except on FB it’s sort of anybody you hang out with, and on LI it’s anyone who seems relevant to your career. For sure you should start connecting to some of the classmates you respect. Who knows how you might be able to help each other in the years and decades to come!
Our “vlog” is more of a Hi, it’s me! video. Here are some “real” vlogs covering topics like Activism, Fashion, Humor, and Education:
And then there are “professionals” like Sarah Silverman or John Oliver, who use comedy to express ideas. Although they may be funny, these videos are filled with information. They may have slick production values, but at their heart, they’re really simple, compelling vlogs:
Everyone should do a Welcome to my website vlog. I hope you’ll find it a helpful thing to have.
Want more points? You can also do a vlog about anything you care about. Activism, Fashion, Health & Lifestyle, Sports, Politics, anything. Stephanie participated in a protest march about the election. She wrote a nice blog post about her experience. It could also be a great vlog. Now that the march is over she could record a vlog at home. Or, at the march she also could have used her phone and recorded a vlog right there.
For your EC vlog, make a vlog on any topic. Upload it to YouTube or Vimeo. Make a new WordPress post and embed your vlog on the post.