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Getting approvals without fedex

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gregGetting approvals without fedex
by on Apr 30, 2007 at 7:51:14 pm

How do you folks handle getting editing approvals from clients without sending them a DVD disk via fedex.? I've tried, but it seems to take a long time to upload. Any other sources that you would recommend?

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zrb123Re: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 1, 2007 at 12:42:38 am

Well if they are close enough then you just have them come over and view it. Places like are good, but you should compress it so that the file size is smaller. And depending on them length of the video sending them a DVD may be the best option.

Give us more details and we can give better suggestions.

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GregRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 1, 2007 at 2:51:18 am

They are in California...I'm in Florida. I'm a small biz with no FTP site.

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walter biscardiRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 1, 2007 at 3:08:43 am

[Greg] "They are in California...I'm in Florida. I'm a small biz with no FTP site."

I used a dot Mac account for a while an iDisk. But I had my web host set up an FTP site for a very low cost, they're not expensive at all any more.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
HD Editorial & Animation for Food Network's "Good Eats"
HD Editorial for "Assignment Earth"

Read my blog!

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zrb123Re: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 1, 2007 at 3:25:03 am

Again how long are the videos that you need to send them?

If the length is long enough then file sizes may be to large. If it takes you a long time to upload the file and it tales the client a long time to download the file it may be best to just send a DVD.

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Tom MeeganRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 1, 2007 at 9:38:40 am

Check out these guys:

The website explains how it works.

The other option I've tried, and like, is:

A one month subscription to either service is less than the cost of one FedEx package.

Tom M

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Larry MeltonRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 1, 2007 at 4:47:16 pm

I LOVE YouSendit (and I think I have to thank Tim Kolb for the recommendation). Most of the stuff I send are TV spots, and I usually send Windows Media files. A 640 x 480 file (1024K Download preset in Premiere Pro) is less than 5MB and the quality is more than sufficient for a client to take a critical look. But I've also sent files of about 80-100 MB (12-14 min corp video) and it's always worked great. I have never found the upload to be slow - you should check with your internet provider to see what your upload speed is. It's usually slower than your download speed, but it may be upgradeable. I assume you're already sending lower-res files like Windows Media or MPEG-4, and not full-res files of hundreds of MB - of course that would take a while to upload. In my experience, I can render the file of a :30 TV spot from my timeline and have it completely uploaded in about five minutes.

Also, just wondering if you're using the free version or if you're enrolled in a pay version? I'm on the $4.99/month plan, and maybe they provide faster connections for the paying customers. Just a thought.

I've had several conversations lately with people about how this kind of technology is really changing our industry, removing geography from the equation. I know that FTP use is very popular and has been around for a while, but I'm a very small business as well and this really democratizes the process. And it could not be easier for the client, not to mention the savings over FedEx.

Larry Melton
Grand Rapids MI

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Timothy J. AllenRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 2, 2007 at 2:42:55 am

We've tried sending video files through Telestream Clipmail, delivered them through a cheap FTP site, Fed-Ex on CDs and DVDs, and using an MPEG-2 C-band signal via satellite to our client's MPEG-2 Integrated Receiver Decoder (IRD).

Each method has advantages and disadvantages. Some of the methods are speedier and can have higher quality images, but they cost more.

If I were a small company sending files to a client across the country and timely (but not immediate) delivery was necessary, I'd still try YouSendIt first.

I generally try not to spend money unless I can prove a solid return on the investment, but sometimes the "return on investment" is not just in direct dollars, but in the goodwill and return business generated by good customer service.

That said, if you count the money that you don't have to spend on VHS tapes or blank DVD media, some of those methods for delivering client approvals pay for themselves fairly quickly. (Maybe not the digital satellite method, but in our case I think we were paying for the bandwidth headroom anyway.)

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ericRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 2, 2007 at 7:37:25 am


Look no further. We use this device alot. It hooks up to our player in California and anyone in the world can view their disc over a net connection. They have to install the software from thier computer. Has an on screen dvd remote as well..very cool stuff!


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ericRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 2, 2007 at 7:38:03 am

That last post was for Greg..sorry

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ericRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 2, 2007 at 7:39:18 am

When is the cow going to get a edit button!?

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Tim WilsonRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 2, 2007 at 11:31:51 am

[eric] "When is the cow going to get a edit button!?"

We've found that people tend to post more prudently when they know they can't take their words back. :-)

Although as you'll see throughout The COW, emphasis is on the word "tend."

Sorry about the typo thing, though. I can only suggest the preview button....which I have to confess I don't use as often as I should...

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JBaumchenRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 2, 2007 at 5:47:17 pm

Using Premiere Pro, I export the video from the timeline to ClipNotes, which creates a PDF with the video imbedded.

The client reviews the video in Adobe Acrobat and can place comments inside Acrobat while watching the video. When the client is done reviewing and commenting, XML data is sent back to me via e-mail. When I receive the data in the XML file, importing it back into Premiere will create markers on my timeline. Clicking on the marker will display the client's comments.

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Tim KolbRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 7, 2007 at 2:16:37 pm

Well...keep in mind that uploads will never be as fast as downloads on any given connection. The way the internet is configured you're sort of "swimming upstream" as it were...

I've used (after a suggestion from a software company I was working with when we were exchanging some rather large test files) for several years. It's been extremely dependable. My vendors use it as well. I regularly receive voiceovers and that sort of thing via YouSendIt from vendors too small to have a 24/7 server online.

I think the idea is to use it in the appropriate places...get a first and second draft out via QT H.264 from QT Pro and upload that...if more is necessary for final approval(though I think that high bitrate H.264 actually is better image quality than an SD DVD to my eye) do one Fed Ex at the end.

Best of both don't spend a fortune on Fed Ex every day for two weeks, and the client still has something tangible in their hands if that's important to them.

...keep in mind that part of the benefit scenario is that alterations can be proofed as quickly as you can make the changes and get the data up, which is a quicker turn than even Fed Ex. (a way to sell it to the client) I've had up to five turns in a day using YouSendIt (and several computers, a cable internet connection and a 4GB thumb drive)

Kolb Productions,

Creative Cow Host,

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Steve KownackiRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on May 25, 2007 at 11:39:31 am

Why don't you want to use FedEx? Not fast enough? Too expensive? I just wanted to throw a thought in there to new business people that nearly all shipping/server/internet, etc. is a cost not only of doing business, but something paid for by the clients, not you. This is a factor worked into your hourly rates. You pay for shipping when you order from LL Bean, same applies to the client. I have a line item on my budgeting worksheets to remind me to add in $$ for shipping. How does your client work? High strung, need it yesterday? Budget in for that - First AM delivery is over $50, I don't care, he's paying for it (that's also in your sales pitch of the great service you offer and service has a price). Most of our shipping is now US Mail and the account is fairly inexpensive and has great tracking tools. A 2 ounce DVD in cardboard sleeve gets to most of the country for me in 2 days for 80 cents. I guess you weigh in "their oversights (delays) are not always my emergency".

Back to the topic, as Walter said, FTP is cheap. Our service gives us a simple control panel so I can setup password protected folders for each client and they can grab their movies. Works both ways so client can drop logos and other things we need from them too. We've got 384K upload, a few hundred megs will take a while, but it gets there the same day.


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Rob WebsterRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on Jun 23, 2007 at 4:27:49 am

Has anyone tried Serv-U? It's software that sets up your own PC as an FTP server. You can tag only certain folders to be available to the outside world, and you can password them. If it works as promised, then you wouldn't have to worry about having to go through a provider to set up FTP for you. I used a trial version of it a couple of years ago to get some files to my brother, and it worked like a charm, but I'm not sure how it stacks up to other options when business depends on it.


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Marco SolorioRe: Getting approvals without fedex
by on Aug 10, 2007 at 10:29:10 pm

I just found this thread by accident. Okay, so maybe I'm a little late for the party, but here's some relevant info.

If you're looking to share your media assets to clients for review and approvals, whether it's video, audio, images or documents, you might want to look into Media Batch. It works on your website and turns it into a powerful production tool. Your clients can log into a project/client list you create, can view the files inline in their web browser, download files, upload files and much more. All user actions are tracked as well. You can add notes to each files as well as a complete approval system for each file.

One of the cool features is the Media Batch FLV Viewer. It's timecode based and allows you to add marker points on the timeline in real-time. You can then add notes to each of those marker points as well as DRAW directly on the video image for each marker point; great for diagrams and such.

Media Batch can completely replace the whole FTP nightmare. Unlimited users and lists with no monthly fees.


Marco Solorio | OneRiver Media

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