NewsOK and auto-play videos
I received a question the other day:
1. Why does NewsOK.com auto-play the videos that accompany the news stories? I can’t think of any other news website that does that.
2. Why is there not an option available for the site visitor to toggle auto-play on and off?
3. Had there been discussion or thought to make videos not auto-load or click to play only?
Fair questions. We’ve been asked before. It’s something some users prefer we would change, but we don’t get as many comments about auto-play videos as we do about other functionality on our site (like, say, commenting, for example).
Here was my response:
1: The auto-play has been our most effective way to expose that content to users. In many cases the video tells the story better than the text, and the auto-play feature allows us to put that content in front of the user.
2 & 3: We’re always discussing various functionality and possible changes on our site. But to my knowledge, we have no plans to make a change at this time.
I can say a little more about that here in the blog (I never want to get too wordy in an email) …
We understand that some users see the auto-play function as mildly inconvenient and maybe even highly annoying. Pausing the video when it starts to play automatically does require another click of the mouse. But the fact is that we want those videos to play for our users as much as we possibly can. We can’t really apologize for that.
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