Online video is passive and one-way, say the developers of Playkast. They aim to add a social layer.
Their service, which debuted in beta today at the Demo Fall 2011 conference, lets anyone create challenges, contests, or conversations around online videos. Site owners can start with a YouTube-hosted video or load their own video file. They then decide what kind of interactivity they want to add. When they’re done, they get code to embed on their site, blog, or Facebook page.
The service lets viewers vote on their favorite video in a contest or post video responses using a webcam.
The developers suggest using Playkast to showoff new products, add interactivity to advertising, or conduct a dialogue with viewers.
“Marketers have been telling us that their fans and followers want to participate. They need to be part of the experience and take ownership — just like they do on Facebook with things they love and share. This is the problem we set out to solve,” says Larry Braitman, CEO of Playkast. “Playkast gives brands and entertainers a structured way to reach out, pull the viewers into the video, and have them shape the experience.”