Is Video the Future of Media Compared to Photography?

Is Video the Future of Media Compared to Photography?

In today's rapidly evolving media landscape, video content has undeniably surged in popularity, reshaping how we consume information and entertainment from the internet. According to a report from Q2 2023, video content already reaches 92.3% of internet users worldwide and continues to grow significantly. This statistic highlights the growing dominance of video in our digital age. But does this trend mean that video is inherently better than photography? Let’s explore the differences between these two mediums and their impact on viewers.

Inherent Difference Between Photography and Videography

Photography generally leaves more room for the viewer's interpretation and imagination by providing a single static visual stimulant. In contrast, video feeds all the stimulants, from motion visuals to audio layering and text, providing a multi-sensory experience. Therefore, photography allows each viewer to connect with it based on their unique experiences and emotions, while video delivers a more immersive and context-rich experience.

For example, based on the headline image above, the surroundings are up for the viewer's interpretation. It may be seen as being shot in the jungle, a park, or among potted plants, making photography a versatile and flexible medium. In contrast, if the scene above was shot in a video, the context would be delivered through the combination of motion pictures and ambient sound, guiding the viewer to determine where it was shot. Hence, the video leaves less room for personal imagination. Fact: the image was shot from a potted plant in an alleyway.

The Growing Trend of Video in Social Media

Despite the inherent differences, the rise of social media has fueled the proliferation of video content. Platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube have become dominant spaces for video sharing, driving the demand for short, engaging clips. This shift is evident in marketing strategies, where businesses increasingly use video to capture attention and convey messages quickly and effectively.

Photography Versus Videography: Which Is Better?

Photography captures and preserves individual moments, offering flexibility and personal interpretation that allows viewers to connect with images on a deeper level. Its portability and timeless appeal make it a versatile medium for storytelling. Videography provides a rich, immersive experience by combining visuals, sound, and motion, which can convey complex narratives and emotions more effectively. This multi-sensory approach engages viewers deeply and is particularly effective for dynamic content.

While video continues to grow in popularity and offers a rich, multi-sensory experience, photography remains a powerful and flexible medium that allows for personal interpretation. Each medium offers its unique advantages and engages audiences in different ways, often complementing each other in the media landscape. It is challenging to declare one as definitively better. Therefore, deciding which medium is better ultimately depends on the context and purpose of the content. As we look into the future, the question remains: Will the immersive nature of video overshadow the imaginative potential of photography, or will both continue to coexist, each serving its unique purpose? So, which do you think holds the edge for your storytelling needs?

Zhen Siang Yang's picture

Yang Zhen Siang is a commercial photographer specialising in architecture, food and product photography. He help businesses to present themselves through the art of photography, crafting visually appealing and outstanding images that sells.

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22 Comments

I am getting tired of a lot of video content. Text with images can be digested much faster and it's also easier to go back and forth. A lot of the photography tutorials are the worst. There is maybe 2 minutes of content and the other 18 minutes are just padding.

Bingo!

Hate to admit but this is facts!

Totally agree--I want a 4-6 min video at the most. The age of watching 20-30 min YouTube videos for me is over

If it’s 20-30 minutes of good compact content and knowledge then it’s well worth it. But if 20-30 minutes later we learned nothing that’s just a waste of time

I think video has always been the choice of most people for self expression when they can adopt the technology. With the amazing video tools of modern cell phones, photography will be less important for "capturing the moment" in an acceptable quality. Having said that, I think creating a good, artistic video is always going to be much harder than a good, artistic photograph or series of photographs. So photography will continue as the more popular way for most people to create their finest artistic expressions.

You’re right as I recently ventured into videography.. it’s almost impossible to do it alone. While photo I can create finely crafted image myself

God save us from amateur videographers! Cameras held in portrait mode, and the instant the action begins the photographer waves the camera around wildly. And M M hit the nail on the head. Two minutes of useful content, if you’re lucky, and the rest of the time, the self-styled “influencer“ talks just to hear themselves. I’m at the point where, if it’s anything less than the Second Coming, I’m not going to watch it. And even if it is the Second Coming, if the camera is in portrait mode, I’m going to give it a miss.

well these contents serve for entertainment purpose, I too no longer watch so much of these videos unless researching for clients trendy work

We no doubt have different tastes in entertainment.

Generally I don't like videos and don't watch many. Oft I come across "how to do (whatever) in Lightroom" and click on it to find it's 15 or 20 mins, most of it waffle. If you make video stop the waffle, shut up and get to the point as I have better more enjoyable things to do than listen to you waffle for 20 mins when you can do it in five.

Reading an article is better, more efficient and you can re-cap much quicker.

i will usually just 2x those videos.. and most of the time skip to the main point.. sometimes we just need the direct know how video

No

Video just meet Gen Z stimulation gluttony and void anxiety, that's why social media platforms promote it over photography today... And the shorter the better, (count in seconds) so it don't exceed the generation's attention span !

very true.. and short form video has also been getting a burst in popularity

Not until you can put video on paper.

portable mobile devices has somewhat replaced a lot of paper usage these days tho

My wife and I have five iPads, so we are somewhat familiar with portable computing. But I said *paper*. None of the iPads consists of a single sheet of paper.

I hate scrubbing through video to get to the actual content. And there's no easy way to "skim read" video for the main points. In fact, FStoppers choice to promote video is the main reason I seldom click on any of their articles any more; too many videos not enough solid content!

I have the same thoughts.. Often I will just search for solution on google and they will give the suggested minute to watch. On your second issue, at Fstoppers we usually share topics that we feel are interesting for our community to watch. We believe this is a way to grow the community while giving exposure to everyone. There are a lot of quality contents to read as well if you are interested. You may also write in on our contact page to suggest topics that may be interesting and not yet covered. This will highlight to fellow writers and editors who are constantly working hard behind the scenes to make this community a better place to learn and enjoy photography

If photographers creating their YouTube channel videos made photographs the same way as they do their videos, they'd be making pictures with no recognizable subject, distractions all over the place, elements which don't relate, and muddy tonal values. Seriously, these are the same people who teach photo composition, but wander off course and can't stick to the point in an 18 minute video.

same thoughts