Back in October I wrote a post about the advantages ScreenLight has over public video sharing applications like Vimeo. We get a lot of similar questions about YouTube - it's free, so why not just use it to screen videos for clients instead of ScreenLight? Many of the same arguments for using ScreenLight over Vimeo apply to YouTube: the ability to brand your screening rooms; the ad free environment; and the fact that the workflow in ScreenLight is designed for Video Production. Unlike Vimeo, however, YouTube provides privacy controls for their free accounts. This may at first glance sound like a great feature for someone seeking to share videos privately with their clients, but there are a few caveats.
YouTube Privacy Controls Give You Choice, but Require Your Clients to Have YouTube Accounts
When you upload a video to YouTube, you have three options to choose from in terms of who can view your video:
- Public (anyone can search for and view)
- Unlisted (anyone with the link can view)
- Private (only people you choose can view)
Public is the default, and since we are concerned with privacy we don't have to go into any detail about that option. Unlisted keeps the video from showing up in public searches, but anyone with the link can view it, so it doesn't prevent it from being passed around. Private allows the user to enter a recipient's email address so only the person with that account can watch the video. Trouble is, the email address has to be linked to a YouTube account, and they have to be logged into their account the watch the video. Which means if your clients don't have YouTube accounts, then you have to ask them to set one up. ScreenLight takes this burden away from your client (and the hassle of you having to talk them into it), because the ScreenLight account holder creates all the user accounts for their clients. When you want to share a private video with someone on ScreenLight, you set up their account for them. The user simply gets is an email telling them an account has been created for them, along with their username and password. They just click a link and login to watch the video. The less your video recipients have to do, the easier the experience is for them.
Related Video Links Can Be Inappropriate or Offensive to Your Client
Both the Unlisted and Private options have a significant drawback, particularly if you are sharing videos with corporate clients. Alongside your video, YouTube suggest links related to your video that you may be interested in. The problem with this is that not all the videos it suggests may be appropriate for your client, with some being just plain offensive. Again, not the best thing to put forward when trying to make your client's experience sharing video projects as enjoyable as possible.
With ScreenLight, when you share videos with your clients, all they see or have access to are the videos you want them to see. At the end of the day, when your clients are counting on both your discretion and your professionalism, ScreenLight is the clear option if you want to truly share videos with your clients privately.