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(HyperVocal)   We may finally have a cure for Vertical Video Syndrome   (hypervocal.com) divider line 103
    More: Cool, cure  
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5899 clicks; posted to Geek » on 16 Jan 2014 at 10:54 AM (48 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



103 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-01-16 09:47:08 AM  
I would prefer an approach where, the moment someone presses the "record" button with their phone held vertically, it gives them a painful but non-fatal electric shock. The shock gets stronger each successive time.
 
2014-01-16 10:16:20 AM  
So you're saying that someone who's too dumb to figure out that they shouldn't be holding their phone upright while filming video is going to spend a dollar on an app they will then use to cure themselves of this affliction they aren't even smart enough to know they have?
 
2014-01-16 10:36:53 AM  

Dust: So you're saying that someone who's too dumb to figure out that they shouldn't be holding their phone upright while filming video is going to spend a dollar on an app they will then use to cure themselves of this affliction they aren't even smart enough to know they have?


Exactly, any solution needs to be baked into the OS. Smartphones have all these sensors; why can't they sense when the owner is holding the phone in portrait orientation and trying to record video and simply record a Rickroll (in landscape orientation) instead?

Mom: "Hey Mom, I took this video of your grandson's first step! Watch..."

Phone: "Never gonna give you up..."

Mom: ???????
 
2014-01-16 10:50:07 AM  
How about putting the phone in your pocket and just watch the concert and try to remember it later. With your memory. In your brain. That's in your head.

/pet peeve at concerts
//people recording them with their tablets is worse
 
2014-01-16 11:00:22 AM  
Requires iOS7 - meh.  I'm really surprised it took this long for something like this anyway.  The cameras by default should offer this option.
 
2014-01-16 11:05:31 AM  

Mitch Taylor's Bro: Dust: So you're saying that someone who's too dumb to figure out that they shouldn't be holding their phone upright while filming video is going to spend a dollar on an app they will then use to cure themselves of this affliction they aren't even smart enough to know they have?

Exactly, any solution needs to be baked into the OS. Smartphones have all these sensors; why can't they sense when the owner is holding the phone in portrait orientation and trying to record video and simply record a Rickroll (in landscape orientation) instead?

Mom: "Hey Mom, I took this video of your grandson's first step! Watch..."

Phone: "Never gonna give you up..."

Mom: ???????


I don't like that idea.  There do exist some rare but legitimate reasons to record in vertical orientation.  We don't need to make the phone tell you how not to be an jackass we need people to stop being jackasses.
 
2014-01-16 11:08:43 AM  

Mugato: How about putting the phone in your pocket and just watch the concert and try to remember it later. With your memory. In your brain. That's in your head.

/pet peeve at concerts
//people recording them with their tablets is worse


There was a recent XKCD about it, and getting annoyed by people taking pictures instead of just enjoying the view. I've never had a problem with taking a picture.

What do these people hope to get out of a camera phone recording of a concert from the 7th row? The microphone won't distinguish the audio properly, the video is single perspective, shaky, and usually vertical, and it takes as much time to WATCH something as it does to shoot it. Fine, by all means, shoot a 5 second clip to "show you were there" or post a clip or segment of them singing part of your favorite song. NOBODY IS GOING TO WATCH 45 MIN OF SHAKY, SINGLE ANGLE CELL PHONE VIDEO, PUT IT THE FARK AWAY.

I recall seeing a guy recording the vast majority of a concert on his phone, and then seeing him again in a beer line. I asked if he takes video of all the concerts he goes to and he said yes. I asked if he goes to many, and he said yes. I asked if I could see a video he shot of another concert, and he said no. Why? "Because I usually delete them after the show."

I didn't bother with any follow up questions.
 
2014-01-16 11:09:40 AM  

Egoy3k: There do exist some rare but legitimate reasons to record in vertical orientation.


Can you name a few? I'm curious what examples you have in mind that wouldn't be better solved by a simple vertical pan.
 
2014-01-16 11:19:25 AM  

Egoy3k: Mitch Taylor's Bro: Dust: So you're saying that someone who's too dumb to figure out that they shouldn't be holding their phone upright while filming video is going to spend a dollar on an app they will then use to cure themselves of this affliction they aren't even smart enough to know they have?

Exactly, any solution needs to be baked into the OS. Smartphones have all these sensors; why can't they sense when the owner is holding the phone in portrait orientation and trying to record video and simply record a Rickroll (in landscape orientation) instead?

Mom: "Hey Mom, I took this video of your grandson's first step! Watch..."

Phone: "Never gonna give you up..."

Mom: ???????

I don't like that idea.  There do exist some rare but legitimate reasons to record in vertical orientation.  We don't need to make the phone tell you how not to be an jackass we need people to stop being jackasses.


I don't like that you don't like my idea. QED, I win.
 
2014-01-16 11:27:08 AM  

Mugato: How about putting the phone in your pocket and just watch the concert and try to remember it later. With your memory. In your brain. That's in your head.


images6.cpcache.com
 
2014-01-16 11:32:32 AM  
Beheading? Please tell me the answer is beheading.
 
2014-01-16 11:42:58 AM  
I cured my family of taking vertical videos with their phones by intentionally clipping the sides of some of their videos to make them appear even more vertical. Then displayed the vertically challenged video of their precious children's close up noses on their massive 65"+ HDTVs with giant black sides of the video.

They now never mistakenly hold their cameras vertically for videos.
 
2014-01-16 11:46:28 AM  
Maybe I'm weird, but my phone (Samsung Galaxy S3) records in normal dimension when held vertically.  I can film with the phone vertical, and watch vertical on my phone, but when I transfer it to my laptop it displays as though it were shot horizontally.  Apparently the phone records video that's "outside" the viewing aperture on the screen.

Anyway, not sure why everyone else fails at this (is this an iPhone thing?).
 
2014-01-16 11:51:23 AM  

HMS_Blinkin: Maybe I'm weird, but my phone (Samsung Galaxy S3) records in normal dimension when held vertically.  I can film with the phone vertical, and watch vertical on my phone, but when I transfer it to my laptop it displays as though it were shot horizontally.  Apparently the phone records video that's "outside" the viewing aperture on the screen.

Anyway, not sure why everyone else fails at this (is this an iPhone thing?).


Yeah, I just double-checked my settings, mine shoots in 1920 x 1080 regardless of whether it's horizontal or vertical.
 
2014-01-16 11:52:56 AM  
Unfortunately, the cure for Vertical Video Syndrome has the side effect of causing Taco Neck Syndrome.
mobilefiller.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-01-16 11:54:10 AM  

grinding_journalist: Mugato: How about putting the phone in your pocket and just watch the concert and try to remember it later. With your memory. In your brain. That's in your head.

/pet peeve at concerts
//people recording them with their tablets is worse

There was a recent XKCD about it, and getting annoyed by people taking pictures instead of just enjoying the view. I've never had a problem with taking a picture.

What do these people hope to get out of a camera phone recording of a concert from the 7th row? The microphone won't distinguish the audio properly, the video is single perspective, shaky, and usually vertical, and it takes as much time to WATCH something as it does to shoot it. Fine, by all means, shoot a 5 second clip to "show you were there" or post a clip or segment of them singing part of your favorite song. NOBODY IS GOING TO WATCH 45 MIN OF SHAKY, SINGLE ANGLE CELL PHONE VIDEO, PUT IT THE FARK AWAY.

I recall seeing a guy recording the vast majority of a concert on his phone, and then seeing him again in a beer line. I asked if he takes video of all the concerts he goes to and he said yes. I asked if he goes to many, and he said yes. I asked if I could see a video he shot of another concert, and he said no. Why? "Because I usually delete them after the show."

I didn't bother with any follow up questions.


He's hoping for some amazingly good/bad thing to happen?  Like Peter Gabriel showing up at a Genesis concert?  Or Ronnie Wood dying of an OD on stage?
 
2014-01-16 11:58:11 AM  

grinding_journalist: Mugato: How about putting the phone in your pocket and just watch the concert and try to remember it later. With your memory. In your brain. That's in your head.

/pet peeve at concerts
//people recording them with their tablets is worse

There was a recent XKCD about it, and getting annoyed by people taking pictures instead of just enjoying the view. I've never had a problem with taking a picture.

What do these people hope to get out of a camera phone recording of a concert from the 7th row? The microphone won't distinguish the audio properly, the video is single perspective, shaky, and usually vertical, and it takes as much time to WATCH something as it does to shoot it. Fine, by all means, shoot a 5 second clip to "show you were there" or post a clip or segment of them singing part of your favorite song. NOBODY IS GOING TO WATCH 45 MIN OF SHAKY, SINGLE ANGLE CELL PHONE VIDEO, PUT IT THE FARK AWAY.

I recall seeing a guy recording the vast majority of a concert on his phone, and then seeing him again in a beer line. I asked if he takes video of all the concerts he goes to and he said yes. I asked if he goes to many, and he said yes. I asked if I could see a video he shot of another concert, and he said no. Why? "Because I usually delete them after the show."

I didn't bother with any follow up questions.


Nokia actually has some decent video recording on their phones. The Lumia 1020 and 1520 have OIS, mics that record in stereo and don't distort until 140dB, and have up 3x digitial zoom that keeps the video resolution at 1080p so you can actually get in pretty close without losing quality.

That said, I agree that no one wants to see more than a few short clips of a concert.
 
2014-01-16 11:58:45 AM  
Look not everybody has time to remember this shiat.
Especially in the moment.
You'll get the fark over it.

/occasional vertical videographer
//I'll be buying that app
 
2014-01-16 12:03:39 PM  
Is there a phone that prevents the user from taking selfies?
 
2014-01-16 12:10:09 PM  

ChrisDe: Is there a phone that prevents the user from taking selfies?


www.digitaltrends.com
 
2014-01-16 12:12:58 PM  
First World problems.  Seriously.  I mean, I get it that the aspect ratio doesn't match most screens that people will be viewing on, but widescreen movies get letterboxed on 16:9 screens all the time.  Yeah, gramma could have turned her phone sideways, but all the rage seems unwarranted over some 60 second cat videos.  You can always choose not to watch.
 
2014-01-16 12:15:23 PM  

SinisterDexter: First World problems.  Seriously.  I mean, I get it that the aspect ratio doesn't match most screens that people will be viewing on, but widescreen movies get letterboxed on 16:9 screens all the time.  Yeah, gramma could have turned her phone sideways, but all the rage seems unwarranted over some 60 second cat videos.  You can always choose not to watch.


It's not a first world problem. They sell phones in the third world now.
 
2014-01-16 12:20:13 PM  

SinisterDexter: but all the rage seems unwarranted over some 60 second cat videos.


It's OK if pussies are vertical.
 
2014-01-16 12:23:13 PM  

SinisterDexter: First World problems.  Seriously.  I mean, I get it that the aspect ratio doesn't match most screens that people will be viewing on, but widescreen movies get letterboxed on 16:9 screens all the time.  Yeah, gramma could have turned her phone sideways, but all the rage seems unwarranted over some 60 second cat videos.  You can always choose not to watch.


It's mostly because you can't see shiat. It's so farking tiny that you can't tell what's on the video, and then the morons cut off the subject half the time because not only can they not rotate their phone, but they also can't follow the person they're shooting and keep them in frame. So you can't see what the video is about, and then half of the time you can't even see the whole person(or cat) because the person who is shooting it has the reflexes of a spud.
 
2014-01-16 12:24:31 PM  

Mad_Radhu: and have up 3x digitial zoom that keeps the video resolution at 1080p so you can actually get in pretty close without losing quality.


If you have a digital zoom that's recording 1920x1080 at 3x, that suggests that phone has approximately a 6K sensor.   There are film production cameras that don't do that.
 
2014-01-16 12:29:11 PM  
Easy solution... replace the default camera app with one that refuses to record when held in portrait mode. You can only start recordings when holding it in landscape, because the slide to video is missing when tilted the wrong way.
 
2014-01-16 12:29:37 PM  

grinding_journalist: Egoy3k: There do exist some rare but legitimate reasons to record in vertical orientation.

Can you name a few? I'm curious what examples you have in mind that wouldn't be better solved by a simple vertical pan.


vincemichael.files.wordpress.com
Filming a suicide jumper from the ground, and you want to keep both them and the ground in frame.

www.talentnetworkinc.com
Video of a single person doing something at waist level with their hands, while talking to the camera.

b.vimeocdn.com
Videos where the perspective extends upwards and the action is ahead.

Basically, pretty much any time the important parts of the picture are separated vertically, not horizontally.
 
2014-01-16 12:29:38 PM  

SinisterDexter: First World problems.  Seriously.  I mean, I get it that the aspect ratio doesn't match most screens that people will be viewing on, but widescreen movies get letterboxed on 16:9 screens all the time.  Yeah, gramma could have turned her phone sideways, but all the rage seems unwarranted over some 60 second cat videos.  You can always choose not to watch.


The problem comes in when it's a news video-- a video of some event that ends up on the news-- shot by some dork who didn't know how to hold his camera. This includes weather events (hurricanes, blizzards, tornadoes, etc.), cops abusing someone, fights in fast food restaurants, car chases, assaults of various kinds, Black Friday mob videos, and other events that people might want to see because it's news, but would rather not have to see in vertical format because you can't see the whole scene as well as if it were shot in landscape/horizontal mode.

These people shoot these videos then submit them to the news, and we get to watch them on TV (or online) like this. It's no fun watching some newsworthy event unfold when 75% of the screen is black border. It's even worse when the dork holding the phone won't shut up while shooting their half-assed video.
 
2014-01-16 12:36:50 PM  

LesserEvil: Easy solution... replace the default camera app with one that refuses to record when held in portrait mode. You can only start recordings when holding it in landscape, because the slide to video is missing when tilted the wrong way.


I appreciate your good intentions, but we do not need more devices or apps that try and force us to do things the way the maker thinks they should be done. Technology should accommodate the user to the limits of safety and technological possibility, not the other way around.
 
2014-01-16 12:37:31 PM  

grokca: SinisterDexter: but all the rage seems unwarranted over some 60 second cat videos.

It's OK if pussies are vertical.


Not if you're dating a Chinese girl.

/It's an old joke.
//I don't expect you young'uns to get it.
 
2014-01-16 12:41:07 PM  
If there's one issue that should rile up every human being on this planet, it's  civil rights. a woman's right to choose. marriage equality. climate change. all these unedumacated yokels who can't figure out how to film a video. use the proper terminology for a particular medium.

/peeve
 
2014-01-16 12:44:25 PM  
Can someone please offer a reason WHY a vertical video should be considered inferior to a horizontal video?  

If Shaquile O Neal walks buy, you can damn well rest assured that i'm going to film him vertically, and there's not a farking thing you tell me otherwise.

What needs to happen, is that players, and youtube interfaces need to get up to speed and display vertical videos in a full resolution window without shrinking it.
 
2014-01-16 12:47:30 PM  
T.rex: Can someone please offer a reason WHY a vertical video should be considered inferior to a horizontal video?  

If Shaquile O Neal walks buy, you can damn well rest assured that i'm going to film him vertically, and there's not a farking thing you tell me otherwise.

What needs to happen, is that players, and youtube interfaces need to get up to speed and display vertical videos in a full resolution window without shrinking it.


Because we aren't watching them on Wang word processors.

For most people, it's jarring to see a portrait-oriented video on a landscape-oriented display.
 
2014-01-16 12:52:28 PM  

FrancoFile: T.rex: Can someone please offer a reason WHY a vertical video should be considered inferior to a horizontal video?  

If Shaquile O Neal walks buy, you can damn well rest assured that i'm going to film him vertically, and there's not a farking thing you tell me otherwise.

What needs to happen, is that players, and youtube interfaces need to get up to speed and display vertical videos in a full resolution window without shrinking it.

Because we aren't watching them on Wang word processors.

For most people, it's jarring to see a portrait-oriented video on a landscape-oriented display.


I'm typing right now on a work computer with dual monitors, both of which are rotated vertically.  To me, this is more sensible... I'd don't have to scroll down hardly ever, and my resolution is so high that i actually don't have to scroll right, either.
 
2014-01-16 12:56:30 PM  

T.rex: FrancoFile: T.rex: Can someone please offer a reason WHY a vertical video should be considered inferior to a horizontal video?  

If Shaquile O Neal walks buy, you can damn well rest assured that i'm going to film him vertically, and there's not a farking thing you tell me otherwise.

What needs to happen, is that players, and youtube interfaces need to get up to speed and display vertical videos in a full resolution window without shrinking it.

Because we aren't watching them on Wang word processors.

For most people, it's jarring to see a portrait-oriented video on a landscape-oriented display.

I'm typing right now on a work computer with dual monitors, both of which are rotated vertically.  To me, this is more sensible... I'd don't have to scroll down hardly ever, and my resolution is so high that i actually don't have to scroll right, either.


Right, but you're working on text.  Our books are printed with portrait-oriented pages.  Our TVs are made with landscape-oriented screens.

If we had developed those technologies differently, people would be screaming about horizontal video.

There's nothing inherently superior to one orientation over the other (unless you want to get philosophical about how our eyes are placed), it's a matter of what people are used to and comfortable with.
 
2014-01-16 12:58:45 PM  

FrancoFile: T.rex: Can someone please offer a reason WHY a vertical video should be considered inferior to a horizontal video?

If Shaquile O Neal walks buy, you can damn well rest assured that i'm going to film him vertically, and there's not a farking thing you tell me otherwise.

What needs to happen, is that players, and youtube interfaces need to get up to speed and display vertical videos in a full resolution window without shrinking it.

Because we aren't watching them on Wang word processors.

For most people, it's jarring to see a portrait-oriented video on a landscape-oriented display.


Most people watch these videos in a computer window, and those can be resized.  Automatically even, if the player software was written by someone smarter than a six year old.

People are going to have black bars on the TV forever. They need to get over it, and learn to use the FIT WIDTH button when it is needed.
 
2014-01-16 01:01:57 PM  

thrasherrr: FrancoFile: T.rex: Can someone please offer a reason WHY a vertical video should be considered inferior to a horizontal video?

If Shaquile O Neal walks buy, you can damn well rest assured that i'm going to film him vertically, and there's not a farking thing you tell me otherwise.

What needs to happen, is that players, and youtube interfaces need to get up to speed and display vertical videos in a full resolution window without shrinking it.

Because we aren't watching them on Wang word processors.

For most people, it's jarring to see a portrait-oriented video on a landscape-oriented display.

Most people watch these videos in a computer window, and those can be resized.  Automatically even, if the player software was written by someone smarter than a six year old.

People are going to have black bars on the TV forever. They need to get over it, and learn to use the FIT WIDTH button when it is needed.


And when they resize to fullscreen, which many do, they have the same problem.  Like I said above, it's about what they are used to, not any inherent reason in physics why one is better than the other.  We are used to seeing video in a landscape orientation, and many people get a little ooky when it's displayed the other way.  Same principle as projecting maps with south on the top of the page.
 
2014-01-16 01:23:11 PM  
There's nothing inherently wrong with holding the phone upright to film. The problem occurs when you do that without a particularly good reason

FrancoFile: ...any inherent reason in physics why one is better than the other...


Peripheral vision leaps immediately to mind. People don't see the world vertically, they see it horizontally. When you display a video vertically, it messes up the frame of reference. Even if I don't need to see what's happening off the edges of the screen, my brain still wants to because that's what it's used to. It's like looking at the world with horse blinders on. It's annoying and unnatural.
 
2014-01-16 01:25:01 PM  

Slaxl: SinisterDexter: First World problems.  Seriously.  I mean, I get it that the aspect ratio doesn't match most screens that people will be viewing on, but widescreen movies get letterboxed on 16:9 screens all the time.  Yeah, gramma could have turned her phone sideways, but all the rage seems unwarranted over some 60 second cat videos.  You can always choose not to watch.

It's not a first world problem. They sell phones in the third world now.


Whenever someone says "First World problems" they really mean "I think everyone who lives outside North America and Western Europe is a dirt-living barbarian who thinks that technology is magic."
 
2014-01-16 01:25:45 PM  
All the Farkers white knighting Vertical Video need to find the nearest suicide booth and do the world a big favor by selecting "incinerate" on the menu screen.

It's now about resizing or cropping (which this app misses the point entirely on). It's about information, and yes... how our eyes are oriented. Newspapers and literary books are fine in portrait, because we scan them piece-by-piece. Art books, on the other hand, tend to be landscape, to allow us more visual intake. Portrait paintings tend to be designed to fit their subjects, which some have defended vertical videos with... but the problem here is information. Vertical videos, displayed on common display equipment, loses a LOT of information, since the content is scaled down dramatically to fit in the display. Congrats... you've just turned your 80" OLED display into a 32" display. Additionally, we simply aren't accustomed to scanning visual information vertically, so for many people, it becomes uncomfortable to even watch a vertical video.

Arguing for vertical video is about as dumb as arguing for the right to wear spray-on tan to the prom. I suspect the Venn diagram for those two demographics have a large overlap.

It's really not hard to turn your phone on the side to record video, if it is, you might have trouble counting to potato.
 
2014-01-16 01:26:49 PM  

LesserEvil: It's not about resizing or cropping


FTFM
 
2014-01-16 01:31:02 PM  

Ishkur: Mugato: How about putting the phone in your pocket and just watch the concert and try to remember it later. With your memory. In your brain. That's in your head.

[images6.cpcache.com image 400x400]


imgs.xkcd.com

/Personally, I may take a pic or two and/or short bit of video, which takes all of a few seconds, and use the rest of whatever time to enjoy it myself, but hey, I'm not judging how someone else wants to document the occasion.  Unless his phone is blocking my view, in which case the little f'er can DIAF.
 
2014-01-16 01:38:41 PM  
This problem has been solved once already, the right way.

Back in the day, I owned a Blackberry Storm (don't laugh).  It never suffered from this problem.  When I went to take video, it always recorded it as horizontal, landscape-oriented video, no matter how you held the camera, while maintaining the proper up-is-up orientation.  Holding the phone vertically?  The video "viewfinder" on your screen showed what you were recording width-wise in the middle of the screen, with large black areas above and below.  Video shot this way was indistinguishable from video shot holding the phone horizontally.  Problem solved.

And this was 6 years ago that phone came out.  Why isn't this standard behavior (or at the very least a selectable option) on every smart phone now?

Hell, if RIM had advertised this feature more, they might be a bit more viable today.
 
2014-01-16 01:45:17 PM  

ReverendLoki: And this was 6 years ago that phone came out. Why isn't this standard behavior (or at the very least a selectable option) on every smart phone now?


A patent on "static black bars on screen during video recording", probably.
 
2014-01-16 01:53:08 PM  
Wow, can we come up with a more whiny, biatchy non-problem?
 
2014-01-16 01:57:40 PM  

ZeroCorpse: The problem comes in when it's a news video-- a video of some event that ends up on the news-- shot by some dork who didn't know how to hold his camera. This includes weather events (hurricanes, blizzards, tornadoes, etc.), cops abusing someone, fights in fast food restaurants, car chases, assaults of various kinds, Black Friday mob videos, and other events that people might want to see because it's news, but would rather not have to see in vertical format because you can't see the whole scene as well as if it were shot in landscape/horizontal mode.

These people shoot these videos then submit them to the news, and we get to watch them on TV (or online) like this. It's no fun watching some newsworthy event unfold when 75% of the screen is black border. It's even worse when the dork holding the phone won't shut up while shooting their half-assed video.


The news sites get what they get.  If only one person is there to whip out their phone (or their old VHS camera for that matter) and shoot the latest Rodney King beating vertically, the news sites are gonna use it if there's anything recognizable. I blame the news sites for not taking a few minutes to crop and zoom the damn things (or mute the audio).  They wouldn't look any worse than the average convenience store surveillance video.
 
2014-01-16 02:00:38 PM  
There's a reason the modes are called "Landscape" and "Portrait", and I don't see why it's so evil to hold your phone in "portrait" mode when you're taking, well, a portrait.

Or maybe guys like Edvard Munch (The Scream) and Claude Monet (Vétheuil in the Fog) really ARE the devil.
 
2014-01-16 02:03:13 PM  

meanmutton: Whenever someone says "First World problems" they really mean "I think everyone who lives outside North America and Western Europe is a dirt-living barbarian who thinks that technology is magic."


Exactly.  And complaining about the use of the phrase First World Problem is a First World Problem, too.
 
2014-01-16 02:04:55 PM  
My wife, bless her, used to rotate portrait-to-landscape-to-portrait  mid-recording, sometimes multiple times.

Yes, I beat that particular tendency out of her.
 
2014-01-16 02:13:15 PM  

FrancoFile: Most people watch these videos in a computer window, and those can be resized.  Automatically even, if the player software was written by someone smarter than a six year old.

People are going to have black bars on the TV forever. They need to get over it, and learn to use the FIT WIDTH button when it is needed.

And when they resize to fullscreen, which many do, they have the same problem.  Like I said above, it's about what they are used to, not any inherent reason in physics why one is better than the other.  We are used to seeing video in a landscape orientation, and many people get a little ooky when it's displayed the other way.  Same principle as projecting maps with south on the top of the page.


The trouble with that theory is that there hasn't been time for people to truly 'get used' to widescreen. There is a 70 year history of 3x4 TV screens and less than 10 years of widescreen personal cameras.  If anything, people should be 'used to' vertical black bars from the thousands of legacy shows on fullscreen TVs and computers.  The only people with a legitimate 'its what I am used to' complaint are 15 year olds who don't remember pre-digital TV.

Complaining about the aspect ratio sidebars on personal devices is particularly silly, since you can rotate the device to fit the video.  It's trivial to replace any non-rotating players these days.

The iPad is a remarkable validation of how unimportant this factor is. It is a godawful nothing-fits-well portrait mode device.  The fact that its fullscreen mode matches no popular video format has not impacted sales.
 
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