Youtube is a very large video sharing service owned presently by Google, which bought it from the creators in 2007. The Google purchase of the site resulted in the site being what it is today, a large repository of video content from top level pro video producers to the amateur with a cellphone.
Over two billion videos are viewed each day, and some content has tens of m illions of hits while many videos may have hardly any. However, Youtube has also made it possible for people to create content and share material on almost any subject, and the Church is no exception, having begun to place material on Youtube beginning in early 2008.
Using Youtube - The Basics
You simply shoot a video clip or produce video content and place it online, that is the simple part. However, there are some constraints to consider when preparing a video clip. First off, the video file uploaded must not be more than two gigabytes in size. Some say that can result in a 13-minute clip depending on the video quality. Video quality also is a consideration, as you can shoot in any format up to 1080p, which is a very common standard. A lot of amateurs use 720p or even 480p (similar to analog NTSC or PAL video broadcasting), so with the boom in HD programming, many people are going to want to view your video in the highest resolution possible, as 1080p or at least 720p is what many HD Televisions are capable of displaying.
The second thing to consider is production values. For most people, just getting a good video for general use is good enough, being sure there are no lighting issues, overexposed shots and underexposures, camera shake, and other problems that can crop up can torpedo even the best everyday video shots. Most modern-day digital cameras have ways of avoiding all of this although to minimize camera shake a tripod should be used. Most editing software is good for everyday use as well and some have ways of correcting bad shots or other problems with the picture, or cutting out things after the fact.
For best results, if one can afford it, use a digital single lens reflex camera, or DSLR, to get hte best results. For best results on editing the final video use a program that may be a little more expensive but which should have more options in cleaning up the footage and fixing other problems such as with sound, etc. Sound is one thing many people forget about, so find the best available microphones, as trying to capture sound through hte camera is a hit and miss proposition. You can use sound from the camera to sync what you get from a microphone with the action, but otherwise it generally is not recommended.
Uploading Your Finished Video
After you finish producing your video, there are a number of things to consider when readying for and placing the video on Youtube. The first thing is properly titling it. Avoid titles like 'Me in a Tuxedo' or anything similar. Use a descriptive tiIttle that looks like it could be the title of a book, song, or something like that. Then you need to write a description. Make it as professional and be as articulate as possible in describing your video and do it in such a way it will reach its target audience, as the description shows up in the search results in both Google and Youtube itself.
The next thing is tags. Tag it with descriptive terms and words that best describe the video. Using very generic terms causes the video to get lost whether the terms are used in descriptions or tags, so be sure that you use terms that most accurately describe your video to the audience you are seeking.
Given the no-holds-barred and open nature of Youtube, sometimes things happen or are done that are not always done properly. One of them is using copyrighted material without proper permissions. The best way to avoid issues is to use only material that has been placed in the public domain, either through Creative Commons licensing, or that has simply fallen out of copyright and thus become a public domain item. For music clips, one should look not only for Creative Commons licensing that allows you to use music in video clips, but also 'podsafe' music, which can be used in materials that can be downloaded or otherwise placed online.
Making Others Aware of Your Video
Some things useful in promoting your video need to be done at the time you post your video to Youtube. Others can be done at or after that time. When uploading a video, at times you may find that it is a response to another video, so you can say that it is a response to that video, and it will show on that video's page as a response to it. A popular way to share your video once it is actually on Youtube is to post it to your Facebook wall, tweet about it on Twitter, or add to a social bookmarking site. There are a large number of social bookmarking sites, the best known are Digg, Del.icio.us ('Delicious'), and a few others. However, there are over 340 known social bookmarking sites, and if you have Firefox as one of your browsers, add the 'AddThis Toolbar' to it, and you can select from any of these, new ones are added as they find them.