1. A special new WordPress theme built just for video bloggers, and deeply integrated with Vodpod. You can see an initial version of it in action now, on our GeekBlog. You can get the theme now, right here, from Press75.
2. Our new auto-blog service, which lets you automatically publish videos you collect on Vodpod to your blog. This works, as of today, with any WordPress, Blogger or Typepad blog.
The new theme was developed in partnership with Press75 and the talented Jason Schuller. At Press75, Jason has created some of the most popular premium WordPress themes for video bloggers. This new theme is elegant, FREE, open source, and is, we hope, the beginning of a trend.
It may be the perfect way for video bloggers to share their favorite videos from the web.
First, it makes adding a video dead-simple, fast, easy, and painless. It takes just a click to post the video — Vodpod grabs the embed code, makes the thumbnail, and post this all to the WordPress blog where is displayed effortlessly and elegantly in the new theme.
Second, the theme itself is a beautiful and elegant way to show off videos you think are interesting or relevant. A horizontal video strip at the top allows visitors to watch the a featured set of videos (you can define the set by tag).
In the main column, you can intermingle text posts with video posts. When you post a video, text commentary wraps naturally around the thumbnail — no more clunky looking embeds cluttering the page. Clicking on a thumbnail plays the video in a nice widescreen lightbox; you’re freed from the constraints of narrow columns designed primarily for text display. Clicking on a title lets you watch on a specific page for the video, where you can do all the things you’d want to do on a blog — read the accompanying commentary, rate the video, or comment on the video.
With this new video-centric theme, you still get all of the capabilities you’d expect with a WordPress blog — great publishing features, support for a wide array of widgets on the sidebar, inclusion of advertising if you want that. It’s still rough in places, and we will work with Jason to refine and improve the theme over the coming weeks. But we think this is an exciting glimpse at how a WordPress blog can leverage the capabilities of Vodpod (and vice versa).
The second announcement is more under the hood, but also important for both bloggers and theme developers. You can now set up Vodpod to publish directly to your blog. To set this up, just log in to your Vodpod account, click the “blog autopost” link under “Share and Publish.” All you need to do is enter your blog credentials, and we’ll post videos automagically to your blog when you collect on Vodpod (this is our blog importer, in reverse).
Again, if you are a blogger who likes to post videos, you’ll find this an incredibly simple and powerful tool. And the best way to get videos onto your blog. Period. Just one click to get the video both into Vodpod and onto your blog.
This is also important for theme developers. Because we provide the title, text, embed code and a thumbnail (and, we can even more data), theme developers can now build new kinds of video-centric themes that leverage the simplicity and power of Vodpod to make more dynamic, elegant video-centric themes. If you’re interested in that, and working with us, please be in touch.