ClipShare www.clip-share.com is online community building software for sharing videos similar to YouTube. It runs on Linux and Apache Web server, demands PHP version 4.3 or higher and MySql 4+. It also needs several additional applications like GD Libary 2+, Mplayer and Mencoder, Flv2tools, Libogg and Libvorbis and LAME MP3 encoder to be installed which can be downloaded from other sites free of charge.
The installation should take some hours as besides unpacking the software modules you should create your MySql database and run script manually, parameters in several files and change directory rights. After that you should be able to access Admin module to setup the site video channels, the site subscription and advertising parameters (integrated support for Google Adsense and Yahoo Publishers Network).
I assume that when starting to install all requested modules, the process could take several days. However, the company can provide you the installation service or you can host your site in their server starting $2 per month. For the quote and ordering the installation service you should submit them a ticket having root access server administration username and password ready. So this product is not suitable to install for shared hosting services where you are unable to get access to the system root so maybe their hosting could be better solution to anyone considering their product.
Within a week I didn’t have any answer to my open ticket so I assume that their technical and marketing support wasn’t much online (live support was showing always Offline) however they have Client Area so maybe answers can be found from there. They have published FAQ section of installation problems and they are running online forum. Based on Hot Scripts portal feedbacks their technical support problems seems to be come across recently (2008) with probable expansion as previous comments has been always positive.
Their End User agreement says that ClipShare Product is registered trademark of ScriptXperts however either the EUL or their website didn’t had any company information and their liability maximum is $5.
Clip Share registration was extremely simple one page questionnaire, where I was able even to upload my avatar. You can edit your profile any time but it’s not much customizable from the administration side. From your profile you can click to My Videos, My Favorites, and My Playlist and to My Groups.
You can search videos by Tags, view most recent, most viewed, most discussed, most favorites, top rated, recently featured and random.
In each video page you have possibilities to Rate it, Flag it, Bookmark it to favorites, Comment it and even download it. Video page shows simple stats how many times it has been played, the length of the video and number of comments. You can bookmark the page to your social bookmarking sites supporting Spurl, Digg, Del.icio.us, Blinklist, Furl, Yahoo MyWeb, Simply and Google.
Page shows other videos of same author and related videos and tags, including the download and embedded code to link it with your website or blog.
You can upload your videos with title and description texts, video tags and category is essential. After upload you can submit additional information, like date and location recorded and the video was held in the conversion queue even I used default Adobe Flash format for my upload.
When creating a group you should specify this group unique URL and which categories this group belong. Even I did not had access to the Admin module during my evaluation; I hope that categorized can be setup from there.
There is a possibility to setup following Group moderation parameters: Anyone can Join / Join by founder approval / Join only by founder invitation; Group Videos are posted immediately / Group Videos should have founder approval / Only founder can upload videos; Forum postings are visible immediately / Founder should approve posting / Only founder can create new topic; Automatically create group icon from last uploaded video / Founder should choose the group icon.
There can be only one founder-moderator so this product is not suitable for Groups having huge amount of members with several moderators.
From community tab you can just search members and you can filter your result members “with avatar picture” only. When in member profile you can send a friend request, send a message or subscribe his/her videos.
When moving to friends section, user is able to send email invitations to your friends by manually submitting their email addresses separated with comma. At least this software doesn’t upload your full address book which I have been seen a problem to get SPAM messages.
From friends section you are able to access friend videos and their favourite videos. The system includes also simple messaging functionality and the bottom of the page always shows Latest Videos, Random Channels and Recent Tags. I hope this can be setup from administration module however all the sites I visited running on their platform was bottom of the page showing same way. Maybe it needs some programming skills to modify the template files.
Their website claims that besides running ads you are able to setup membership plans integrated with PayPal shopping cart to earn money.
Compared to YouTube it was much simple version lacking contests, blogs, etc. I didn’t found any bugs using the software so at least it was working product however without purchasing their license you have no idea what kind of source code quality they provide. I would at least hope to see more technical description of the product architecture.
Clip Share comes with two versions – Pro and Lite costing $199 / $99. Customer can order several services, like Script Installation Service, Server Setup Service, One year free updates or lifetime free updates priced from $25 to $99. Seems to me that newest version has been declared as Pro version as it contains Avatars, Cloud Tag, Social Bookmarking, Advanced Flash Player, Signup Image Verification, Video Approval, Statistics, RSS feeds, Background Video Compression and Video Compression Settings.
If your need is to run or earn money from Video Social Networking and or do not like Google policies the ClipShare does its job and their one tier affiliate program offering to share 20% of revenues when becoming their reseller. Their low cost hosting offer will be an alternative to YouTube video hosting.
Veiko Herne is lifetime entrepreneur, currently working as Independent Consultant with over 30 years experience in IT and starting his activities in Internet since 1993. After establishing and managing one of the most successful IT companies in Estonia after the collapse of Soviet Union, he later managed worldwide interest to his analytical financial accounting and HR management software packages from New York until September 11th. He is currently living in Belfast, Northern Ireland.