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Video Page Has Been Drastically Improved

Jake Lodwick
October 11, 2007 by Jake Lodwick Alum

Good afternoon. Our designers and engineers finished the new video page. Take a look at Remyyy's video Break Time to see it in action.

I think it is a huge improvement over the previous version. Here's what's new:

  • Bigger video: 506 pixels wide instead of 460.
    • Better quality video: 500kbps, instead of 400kbps (Down the road, we will convert your old videos to higher quality automatically; if you want it now, you can Replace the video)
    • Better video player: faster, you can Share, Embed, or Like it from anywhere you can watch it (Albums, Channels, or on external sites).
    • There's now a separate Settings page for each video. This means no more clumsy in-line editing.
    • New upload page: It's actually built-in to the settings page. So you can upload and edit clips in the same way, instead of having two separate interfaces. The uploading process is more stable and responsive.
    • Easier, faster friend finder for cast and privacy. It shows your contacts, by default, instead of any random users who match your search text.
    • The Share and Embed popups are much easier now; try them!
    • If the video belongs to a Channel or Album, you will see it prominently next to the video. This will help you discover other related videos, but tastefully, ie, instead of plastering "Related Videos" thumbnails everywhere.

Coming soon:

  • "My Videos" will only be videos you uploaded (ie, back to normal!). You will still be able to browse all videos you have a credit for, but they won't be "your" videos.
    • New home page, making it easier to discover new videos and to manage your inbox. We're simplifying things.
    • iPhone integration. Not really but I wish; the YouTube app on there sure does suck. "Oh, hey, I can watch 'The Evolution of Dance' again, great." Apple, what's going on? How about allying yourself with a company that complements, not contradicts, your philosophies?

As usual, post your comments and questions below for personal responses.


BBC 1Xtra

Hi there. Pages look great... but we can't seem to find the no. of plays counter next to my videos. Am we missing something? has it been moved?

Like to keep tabs on the number of views you see.


Jake Lodwick Alum

It's in a box called "Statistics" in the right-column, under the ad.

If it is missing from one of your videos, please paste the URL below.

Robin Mientjes

The only possible iPhone integration-esque thing would be with EDGE and/or screen-size-optimised videos available for download, much like the videos can be available for download right now, but that is a per-video decision, then, and thus not as useful. It would be something, but "something" is not always enough, I guess.

Jake Lodwick Alum

Maybe it could be per-Channel, and we choose a few Channels that automatically get converted each time. That would be phase one.

Robin Mientjes

Yes, that is something that could work. Also keeping it sensible, what with the usefulness of Channels – one topic, roughly, for easier consumption, dictated by people with a vision about it.

Ben Millett

Generally I like it. I liked having the comment section right there under the video. The large description font makes leaving a comment a little more difficult Large descriptions (such as this one: ) make the page look weird. But I like the integration of various things into the video pane.

Ben Millett

Share and Embed don't seem to be working for Safari (is it because I'm using Beta software?). Turned off popup blocker, but it still fails.

What if instead of having popups, the option panels for share and embed cover over the video playlist and related connection sections?

Soxiam Staff

fwiw, one of the main goals of this redesign was to simplify the experience by removing the clutter and distractions. it was to strip away and rearrange elements based on their weight.

ps: thanks for the heads up regarding safari. we will look into it.

Jeff Cagle

I'll second Ben on the large font hindering lengthy descriptions. It would be a shame if people decided to not read what went into the creative process for the video if they are put-off by having to scroll down to read all of the text.

Jake Lodwick Alum

That's an interesting point. Maybe the font size could dynamically adjust based on amount of text, or you could select it yourself. Small, normal, big.

Ben Millett

I think if you are trying to strip things away, user control of font-size would be nice, but would add another layer of work on our part, so a dynamic adjustment might be good, fitting it into a specified space.

Paul McClintock

I agree the font is a bit too big right now. Dynamically adjusting it could work.

Soxiam Staff

I would ask everyone to give this new design some time to soak in. These early impressions are valuable and we will continue to listen but I think there's something truly beautiful about the current presentation where each components are working together to complete the design. And if we start hacking away at different parts too early I think the some of its beauty will get lost before they can be appreciated. I for one really enjoy the larger (but somehow still wonderfully unobtrusive) font size used in the description and believe its one of the key components in what makes this design what it is.

Jeff Cagle

Soxiam, I agree to an extent. I don't think you should go hog-wild in rearranging things right off the bat. I, too, like the large font. But if you get deeper into it and read a lot of the "print is dead" arguments that are out there, many people are ditching newspapers for online sources, but many of those readers are still reading magazine pieces on paper. A large majority of it has to do with the length of the pieces in magazines vs. newspapers. People get tired of scrolling through a 10,000 word feature on their computer screen much faster than a 500 word news story from the Chicago Tribune or something.

While I doubt many (if any) vimeo users will spend 10,000 words writing about the creative process that went into their video, but even a 500 word explanation would consist of a lot of scrolling at the current font size. That's why I think Jakob has a good point about dynamic adjustment in relation to the amount of text that goes into a description. Five-50 words? Leave it the size that it is. Five hundred words? It would need to be smaller.

Tamma Strongbear

I like the new look it's def different. but the font size in the description is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay to large. what font size is that 24??? it really takes away from the great design you guys made.

Jake Lodwick Alum

I should mention that while I think dynamic font adjustment is a good idea, we are going to let the design sink in for a while, as Sox said.

keith Plus

I'm definitely not into the large font size for the description. It doesn't seem logical for a body of content to appear larger than the headers around it. I do see a tricky issue though in that since the video proportions are much longer it might look awkward having a 12px font trying to fill up with width of this new area.

Travis Ekmark

oh wow, it's really beautiful. vimeo is one of the best designed sites i can think of. i love flickr, but i wish it was this beautiful.

Ross Hill

I keep thinking it is already beautiful, then you go redesign it and make it even better :)

Mareen Fischinger

I noticed the new slickness right away when I played a video. Well done, very beautiful indeed.
(Have not yet tried out the rest.)

Ian Lucero Plus

I am liking the HD integration A LOT.

Thank you vimeo. Very excited. Uploaded one clip and it looks great, even though the clip was shot at 15fps. But still, colors will be so much richer.

Also I like the onscreen embed, full-screen, share and HD indicator.

The description area though is double-spaced. Why is that. It takes up too much space. How do you change the description? Oh wait. There it is in "Settings." That wasn't what i was looking for but I found it pretty quick.

Actually I like that. Only thing can there be a way to change the Font size? I don't care about color or type, just the size is too big.

I'm about to upload another clip.

Took me some tinkering to find the ideal setting for this. I still get really huge file sizes for a 1:30 clip. 141MB at h.264 settings. Can probably down the quality a bit.

The upload will be done in about an hour.


Paul McClintock

Wow HD!??!

I have to apologize to anyone at Canon I might have insulted while I was complaining about the ads. FUCKING WORTH IT!

Ben Plus

Looks great! I've got to admit though that I liked the simplicity of the old player. Can you fave an share a video that is embedded on another site?

Also share and embed don't seem to be working

Ted Roden Alum

Share/Embed seem to be broken on Safari with Pop-Up blocking turned on... if you turn it off, it *should* work. We're looking into it.

Chris Kalani

YESSSSSSSSSS I am so excited for all of this. Everything looks great dude... I sent you an email before you posted this... I am a pest.. woo

I love the broken heart for when you un-like a clip!

Jake Lodwick Alum

You're almost impossible to please, so this is a triumph. Not that we were trying to please you!!

Soxiam Staff

i concur. the broken heart is so utterly vimeo.

Nick Douglas

And here I was still joyful over the whole heart for when you like a clip. WAY TO GO ALL EMO.


...I think it's an improvement.

Andrew Love

next up: video that cuts itself.
brought to you by the fine folks at vimeo :)


I like it a lot - but there doesn't seem to be an area where it shows where my videos are getting linked, as it once did...three hours ago.

Is that TK?

Jake Lodwick Alum

I believe this was neglected; I will put it on the to-fix list. Thanks.


The re-design really is great - I didn't mean to diminish that. I...are we still friends?!


Great work, Team Vimeo. All of the updates are just... amazing.


You guys make sense.


Soxiam Staff

that's the best thing i've heard all day. and i'm not saying that because i can still taste your cookies.


dave brownlee

vimeo just gets better and better. i've never had any bugs and so had no reason to complain about anything. you guys do a fantastic job. thanks to you all for creating vimeo for us all.

Soxiam Staff

Thank you for your kind words. We have a lot of exterminators here and they all really hate bugs. We'll try to keep up with your compliments.


Shiny Vimeo getting even better. Nice work guys!


I like the video page but the grey description text is hard to read on my laptop. This is probably just me, so don't worry about it. Overall I like it very much.


I think it rocks! Very clean look.

Lex Productions

I like the changes.

But I miss the context browsing thing, where I could make the browser switch from clips I like, to clips with dalas, to clips in my subscriptions etc.

Soxiam Staff

This was one of the key concerns for us as well. The video browser was often buggy and very difficult to maintain. While being useful for some, many others did not use it as their main navigation device. We're still exploring better ways to offer context browsing.

Lex Productions

I do like how when you pick people who subscribe to your channel, you get the option to look at their profile or videos, maybe something more in that direction.

Paul McClintock

I'm having trouble coming up with a compliment that expresses how impressed I am without swearing. I swear a lot when I am excited.

One thing I would change. Put the video in the centre of the page instead of one the left, and have the newer and older clips on either side.

Then it would be perrrrrrrrfect.

Aiden Pyne Plus

Love it.
Only problem is the large descriptions.
I can see that getting annoying.
Especially whilst watching Julia Allison's videos, where the descriptions are long and detailed.
I don't want to scroll down so much just to leave a comment.

Blake Whitman Staff

Thanks Aiden! We'll see if the long description becomes a problem or not. Let's just give it some time to adjust...


Looks great. TechCrunch has it right when they say "Vimeo sports the best-designed website and a strong community feel."

You say: "We're simplifying things." Simplicity is good.

One minor bug: the downloads seem to be available even when "Allow other people to download the source video" in privacy settings is checked.

Ted Roden Alum

You should be able to rename videos by clicking on "settings" and then "Basics."

Thommy Browne

The player looks beautiful - I was in awe while watching the HD pigeons clip. I am really proud of you all. Hi fives all around!

Also ... a new iMovie tutorial would be helpful so we can know the best way to export our clips for the new "look".

Caroline Martin

Hoooraaaaay! Thank you vimeo, we love you so much!


Will the new home page feature a red Vimeo logo?

Or better yet, color options?


506 pixels? that seems like a strange number...
why 506

charliesteadman Plus

I noticed the larger video size right away. Noice! I really like the "Settings" pages and user finder lists.
For clip descriptions, can we choose colors or at least get a slightly darker grey?

Andrew Pile Staff

A lot of people seem to have issues with the color and size of descriptions, so it's definitely going to get a second look. But if that's really people's biggest complaint, I'm happy =)

Travis Ekmark

Have you guys ever thought about exposing some of the thought-wake behind things like layout and typography decisions?

Vimeo seems too well-designed to be the result of serendipitous design inspiration, but I never see anything about the process...

I like how the new desciption type is occupying the space on the page, but I think it could be smaller to help viewers eyes move across sentences, left to right, easier. It would give the letterforms greater continuity and give the page a stronger informational hierarchy.

Andrew Pile Staff

We generally look at what we think needs improvement or what people don't like and try to accommodate that. Then someone comes up with a design and we play with it till it makes sense to everyone.

Travis Ekmark

Not to be argumentative; you guys do a fantastic job...but doesn't there have to be some criteria other than "till it makes sense to everyone?"

Isn't that kind of subjective and impossible to use as a foundation for decision-making?

Andrew Pile Staff

Is there a better criteria than trying to make sure it accommodates everyone's needs equally?

Justin Ouellette

Design is subjective by its very nature, but the decisions we make are far from arbitrary. The fact that they're subjective doesn't make them any less useful.

Travis Ekmark

Those are all good points. 'Subjective' was poor word choice on my part.

Also, I think that "accomodating everyone's needs equally" is much different than "'till it makes sense to everyone"....and it's good to hear that.

I guess that what I was originally trying to say is this:

I'm curious about Vimeo's design process. What does it look like? Do things get emailed around a lot or printed out + pinned up? How did you guys sell eachother on that typeface and size and color? On what grounds did dissenters object? Was there any disagreement?

Does Vimeo intentionally build a design discourse or is it something that flows out, more organically, from the people who are present?

Andrew Pile Staff

Well when we come up with a feature and decide on a spec we bring in the designers and usability guys who begin to build a mock up. There are lots of emails and print outs. There are many objections and iterations, sometimes about fonts but usually about how things work when you click them. Then the programmers start building it and we go back and forth again about what should happen when you click things. The designers don't finish tweaking till very close to the end.

Travis Ekmark

Cool. Thank you, Andrew. I love what you guys are doing.

I feel like Vimeo is the banner in some parade led by Jacob Lodwick where everyone's screaming, "hey! things can be simple and beautiful and really nice to use!!!"

It's great and for me, as a student, it's inspiring. Cheers.

Matthew Gruman

I'm wondering how much discussion was given the text colour for descriptions. It's seems too coincidental that the colour difference between the grey and white is 200 -- exactly half of HP's contrast recommendations and only 40% of the W3C's.

I think the design on the new page is aesthetically fantastic -- I love how the content seems optimized to appear above the break. It just seems odd that the accessibility design might cheapen the experience for those with poor monitors or visual disabilities.

Everything the vimeo does outside the "recommendations" seems to be done because those recommendations don't always help the end user. Save this one issue, it's an excellent example of the distinction between design and aesthetics.

Andrew Pile Staff

Yeah, a lot of people are having issues with the description text. This week we'll give it a second look.

ryan brown

Looks fantastic, and no small feat. I honestly don't care what Arrington has to say about this site -- good or bad. You've done a great job and in record time. Keep on keepin' on.


YOU'RE AWESOME, VIMEO!!! I really appreciate it!!!

Thank you!


What exactly does the HD on/off button do? I can't tell whether or not its disabling HD, and that wouldn't make much sense if it was..

Andrew Pile Staff

It does disable HD, for people who have very old computers and can't handle it.

Paul McClintock

Are there 2 flv files? Like... one HD and one regular-D?

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