Michael Verdi

Secrets of Video­blogging

2004 and 2005 were a different world in terms of video and the internet. There was no streaming video; no YouTube. The iPhone was still years away and dialup was the way most people, who could, connected to the internet.

But there was a small group of us who thought blogs could do for video what they were doing for publishing. Anyone should be able to easily put a video online for free.


For my part, I used my background as an instructor to write tutorials to help people navigate the incredibly complicated, nascent video infrastructure.

The Freevlog website on blogger.com

The original tutorial from February 2005.

A brightly colored Freevlog website that features an image of a video in the desktop QuickTime interface.

Freevlog updated and expanded with the help of Ryanne Hodson.

The original tutorial was immediately popular. I then enlisted my future writing partner, Ryanne Hodson, to help me expand the site and flesh it out with screencasts.

The Challenge

In 2005, Peachpit contacted us about turning Freevlog into a book. We pitched a short book that would turn the wild west of internet video into a weekend project.

My Role

The Secrets of Videoblogging book is displayed on a shelf among other computing books in an Apple store.

Secrets of Videoblogging in an Apple Store circa 2006.

Sample Chapter

While most of this book is no longer relevant, I think this sample chapter is a good example of what we designed it to be—accessible. It’s, short, full of step-by-step instructions with photos, and features lots of real people doing real things.

Download PDF A hand holds open Secrets of Videoblogging to a page featuring a picture of a smiling man with gray hair and glasses. It's for a video entitled Wishbone.

"Wishbone" - my favorite vlog.