« November 2005 | Main | January 2006 »


I can't even begin to wrap my head around the year 2005. It's been phenomenal, for me personally and for videoblogging. Yes, I quite obviously did the right thing quitting my job a year ago. Now I've got a sweet new job, and this amazing exploding project known as Minnesota Stories.

Let's look at numbers!


To put it another way, you people watched about 80,000 Flash videos and nearly 40,000 Quicktime videos.


That's just crazy. Actually it's not the least bit crazy - it shows you how much people are thirsting for short, quirky, local, independent content. It also shows a growing number of people are willing to make that content, and share it in places like MN Stories and their own videoblogs. It shows this vlog revolution is just getting started.

Throw out your TV's? No, not anytime soon. But shut the dang thing off. There's too much good stuff out there. And we're making it. (Click those links people -- I SAID CLICK THOSE LINKS!)

New Years Resolution: Instead of watching a Family Guy rerun after dinner, watch a handful of vlogs on the laptop. Don't look back.

December 30, 2005 at 04:40 AM in Minnesota Stories | Permalink | Comments (11) | TrackBack


Lucky bastard. I didn't, but I'm saving up for one. If you did, Julio wrote an article in today's Pioneer Press: Get the big picture with video iPod software. It's your one-stop shop for all things viddy-pod, including sweet vlog action, naturally!

Noteworthy area vlogs include Chuck Olsen's "Minnesota Stories," recently nominated for a Weblog Award in the "best video blog" category (he didn't win). Over the holidays, the Minneapolis man debuted a "Vlog Santa" character — yep, that's Chuck in the St. Nick getup and black-rimmed glasses — who appears in three irreverent segments.

For other Minnesota-based video podcasts, go to www.mnstories.com and look for a list of "Minnesota vlogs" on the far lower right.

Julio is a big fan of the Vlog Santa. I'm a big fan of Julio. It's all just one big breezy fan, man.

December 27, 2005 at 09:55 PM in Minnesota Stories, Videoblogging | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack



Hahaha! Look, it's an unborn fetus telling jokes!
I'm totally getting a "Holy Bible - Unborn Edition" for my pregnant friends.
You're welcome.

December 27, 2005 at 04:38 AM in Funny Crap | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack


We had a really lovely turnout for the Minnesota Stories screening at Bryant Lake Bowl tonight, thanks in no small part to this nice City Pages blurb. So many friendly faces, that was the best part. Well, that, and the drink tickets.

It made up for a rocky start to my week - I had a whole bunch of CDs stolen from my car Sunday night. Guided By Voices, The Postal Service, Arcade Fire, Walt Mink, a number of amazing mix cds from Jonathan, and who knows what all. I hadn't been locking our garage door because it's been getting stuck, and apparently I didn't lock the car that night either. Sigh. So Monday night I locked the garage. This morning, I couldn't open the garage door and my car was stuck inside. Oy! Eventually I managed to break in through a window, but it was dicey for awhile.

What would really make things All Right with the Universe is a pair of tickets to this Friday's Soul Asylum show. Soul Asylum got me through the various hardships of college and several relationships. I kind of grew out of them after Grave Dancer's Union, but I am dying to see this show. If anybody out there in blogland has an extra ticket, or hears a giveaway on The Current, please keep me in mind. I can pay you in karma or cash - your choice.

I hope you all are having a lovely holiday season.

December 20, 2005 at 11:55 PM in Minnesota Stories, Personal Crap | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack


I was totally on TPT's Almanac tonight, chatting about Minnesota Stories and videoblogging with my pal Mary Lahammer. And? I was wearing a Clockwork t-shirt. Between the XL shirt and my poor posture, I look all slumpy and fat. But you know, I kind of look like that anyway. I tried to make this analogy between soup and videoblogging, for the elderly Almanac audience, but it seems pretty silly watching it now. Oh, and we had stupid audio problems with both of the clips we tried to play. All in all it went pretty well though and I had a lot of fun. It was good to see the Almanac crew again, too.

Watch the clip (RealVideo, eww!)

Apparently I was also mentioned on MPR's Morning Edition this morning:

December 13, 2005 at 01:11 PM in Minnesota Stories, Videoblogging | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack


Sick of my media blitz yet? Well, too bad. I'm a one-man media natural disaster, or something. I was interviewed by Eric Eskola who didn't realize I was the old Almanac web guy. Check out the olde-tymey feel of this one-minute radio news piece. Picture a black & white newsreel in your mind, with me wearing a bowler hat and playing piano comically fast.

Chuck talks vlogs on WCCO radio [MP3]

I totally namechecked my workplace (Clockwork) in the interview, but he said I work for a "web development company in a corner of his Northeast Minneapolis living room." I actually only work on Minnesota Stories in the corner of my living room. But there may well be a tiny web development company lurking there amidst the dustbunnies.

UNRELATED #1: My favorite Vlog Santa comment so far, from Rocketboom: "All I want for Christmas is for vlog Santa to stick to one accent during his bits. I can't tell if he is from Jersey, Hispaniola, or Sesame Street." Perfect.

UNRELATED #2: What's this all about? Hmm...

December 13, 2005 at 02:36 AM in Minnesota Stories, Videoblogging | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack


Oh yeah. I'm also featured in this New York Times magazine article on Video Podcasts. It's part of their "Year in Ideas" issue.

I promise not to talk about myself anymore. Charlene's Scratch Video is one of my all-time favorite vlogs, for sheer artistry and unexpectedness. Michael Verdi has always inspired me, and breaks down the meaning of vlogs like I wish I could. Josh Leo ain't no drunken college kid. He's just...himself, in front of the camera, and he makes friends with you like that.


December 11, 2005 at 06:32 PM in Videoblogging | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack


Vlog Santa is totally in the New York friggin' Times! And they say Minnesota Stories is one of the best vlogs. Obviously everyone decides for themselves what the best vlogs are... but let me just say, I'm having a pretty fucking good day.


Rocketboom - Rocketboom.com
Mom's Brag Vlog - nealey.blogspot.com
Michael Verdi - MichaelVerdi.com
Minnesota Stories - mnstories.com
Secret Vlog Injection - blogumentary.typepad.com/vlog
Scratch Video - scratchvideo.tv
Karmagrrrl - smashface.com/vlog
(Rocketboom's LA correspondent, Zadi Diaz)
Augenblick - dltq.org/augenblick
(Serbia's first vlogger, Mile Matejic)
Taylor Street Studio - taylorstreetstudio.com
(Portland, OR vlog pioneer, Will Luers)

December 10, 2005 at 09:52 PM in Minnesota Stories, Videoblogging | Permalink | Comments (9) | TrackBack


Check it out. I'm in Sunday's New York Times: TV Stardom on $20 a Day.

Dude. They say I made (possibly) one of the best music videos of the year! Crazy!

Later today I'll get my hands on a New York Times Magazine, which features a screenshot from my Welcome to the Future video. Dude!

New York Times: TV Stardom on $20 a Day.
Rocketboom's Minneapolis correspondent, Chuck Olsen, profiles other people on his main site, Minnesota Stories, but also maintains a video diary called Secret Vlog Injection. One post there uses video that Mr. Olsen shot without permission during an indie-rock concert at a local club. The result records not only a great performance by the band but also Mr. Olsen's argument with the club's manager, who tried to confiscate his camera. The story evolves into a smart, funny discussion of copyright issues and the philosophical difference between the world-views of the vloggers and traditional media companies. "There's no economic motive," Mr. Olsen says in titles that appear on the screen like a news crawl, noting that the viewer is not being charged for the video. "The point is to capture, and share, fantastic, fleeting moments."

The twist is that Mr. Olsen used his stolen images to make what might be one of the best music videos of the year, which could easily have been shown on MTV as an advertisement for the band. But not all vloggers are interested in making video that could be televised.

December 10, 2005 at 12:37 PM in Minnesota Stories, Videoblogging | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack



This is huge, media-shifting news. Rocketboom, the world's most popular vlog, is now being distributed over TiVo. From TiVos Rocketboom page: "Rocketboom is presented on TiVo as part of the TiVo Videoblog Project, which is currently experimenting with ways to make the new medium of videoblogs accessible on television. If you have a videoblog or are interested in participating, please fill out this form." I just submitted Minnesota Stories, just for the heck of it. Probably too local, but worth a shot eh?

PodCasting news: RocketBoom Video Podcast Now Available on Tivo

Can I also just say - I'm happy TiVo is calling is a videoblog, not a "video podcast."

December 9, 2005 at 10:41 AM in Media, Videoblogging | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack