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Assorted geekery

I'm currently rolling out a few changes to our video files and how they reach you. These are mostly improvements planned since before we launched, which are only now becoming practical to implement. Here's the details.

 

1. High definition video

When the site launched, all our video files were the same screen resolution: 960x540px. This is big for web viewing, but it's not going to fill a large TV screen.

Now, I'm proud to be able to offer high resolution MP4 files at a DVD-quality 1920x1080px. This is so big it has to be shrunk down to fit on my computer monitor!

So far, A Taste of Her Belt, Liberated Ladies of the Jazz AgeDana for Senator and The Prefect's Revenge - part 2 all have high res MP4 video files available at the new HD resolution. The embedded video player and low res/small download files will still run at 960x540px as before. 


Click on the image for a full-resolution preview of the new HD video size (and this week's BDSM film epic...)

 

Video formats

Our archive is getting bigger by the week (53 spanking scenes and counting, of which 30 include video), and as the site grows server space becomes an increasingly pressing issue. Last week I needed to free up some space on the server at short notice, and I took the step of cutting back on the number of video formats offered for a small number of scenes.

Did you notice the change? Did you find it disruptive? Let me know!

When the site launched I wasn't sure what formats people would prefer. I needed to balance quality against download size. MP4 offers a good quality to file size ratio, but I know many Windows users prefer WMV. When the site was very new, I went down the route of offering everything: an embedded video player, a large/high quality MP4 and WMV, and a small/lower quality WMV and MP4. I never intended to keep all of these, but I hoped to collect some data that would help me whittle the selection down.

The option I am currently testing with some video scenes is to offer the following:

  • Embedded popup video player (960x540, 1.2mbps) 
  • High quality, large download MP4 (1920x1080, 1.5mbps)
  • Lower quality, small download WMV (960x540, 1mbps)

Many spanking sites still only offer you one download option, so I'm hoping this will still provide enough range to be convenient for most people. It also halves the amount of time it takes me to export and upload video files, as well as saving space on the server. 

My current intention is to roll this change out to all scenes by the end of the month. If it's going to muck up your browsing habits, this is your chance to leave a comment and tell me what would suit you better.

 

'Buy Scene' links

This is the really exciting one.

Eventually, I want a shopping cart on-site which allows you to buy individual scenes instead of a membership, with discounts for bulk purchases. This is on the wishlist up there with selling printed DVDs. It'll cost a bundle to write the code and I'm unlikely to afford in the next year. 

In the meantime, of course, you can visit our Spanking Library store. Spanking Library has a very clean page design and easy to use interface. But you have to create a user account - it's not quite a neat one-click process. So I've come up with an interim solution.

If you're not currently a paid member of Dreams of Spanking (which is still the best value option if you want to watch more than one scene), viewing each spanking scene page will give you a "Buy Scene" button next to the button to join the site. Clicking this button will take you straight to a payment page for that video. No site membership, no subscription, no pressure: just the one scene you're interested in, available for download at your fingertips. 

If you click this button, the transaction will be handled by Clips4Sale, who don't require a username and password to buy clips. I've duplicated our clips store on their website, and the button will take you straight to the payment page for the scene you were viewing. Simple, easy.

I'll be rolling this exciting addition out to all the scenes in our archive over the next few weeks!

Comments

I cannot speak for members in other countries, but in Germany, small download formats are not necessary because fast download bandwidth is available everywhere.
Since storage capacity is no problem any more, it is possible to chose a big format and keeping it stored on an external terabyte drive.
Whoever wants to produce DVDs, will choose MP4 as a rule.
Therefore, your decision concerning formats sounds good for me, but not necessarily for other people.
Concerning buying individual clips, that seems to be a reasonable offer. Personally, I like to take out a subscription once in a while depending on new content.

Let me add a few other comments:
Having the visitor open an account when coming t the site for the first time, is a very good - I think even a unique - feature. Having ID and Password already when taking out a subscription at a later time and occasionally, makes the whole set up very easy on the customers.
Offering big trailers and the blog at no costs using an existing ID rounds off a very sound marketing concept. In view of this feature you do not have to worry about offering recurring subscription.
Don

PS. I just hit the Clear form button by mistake and started cursing into my beard, then used the right mouse button and was able to recover the erased text. Very nice indeed.

downloding

Pandora s long as it plays on Windows vista ,love and spanks,timxx

MP4 and WMV will both play in Windows Media Player so you'll be fine :)

Thanks for the feedback Donpascual! Greatly appreciated and I'm glad you are a man who appreciates high quality video, large downloads and all :)

Thanks too for the affirmation with regard to the user account format - I genuinely think it's an improvement on the system used by most other sites. Recurring subscription would still be a nice option to offer at some point though.

I don't know if the CMS or your browser should take the credit for saving your unpublished text, but I'm very glad you didn't lose it!

Recurring subscription

I am aware of the advantages of recurring subscriptions. However, you have just started generating content and it will be some time until recurring subscriptions make sense because of an abundance of goods offered.
And, in order to offer abundance, you and your friends will have to work your asses off without experiencing the fun you are having now.
For my part, I will take out a subscription every two or three months. But I am having a quick peek almost every day.

There is another argument against recurring subscriptions: people have fast connections; they will suck the site dry in less than a month.

On the other hand, if you want to control downloading, in order to earn more money, you will have to install limits (by time or volume). I have experienced this once, and will never again subscribe to that site. They did not even inform the customers about limits. The hammer simply fell at any time and I was out for up to four days.
As long as there are so many ways to keep posted (2 Blogs, trailers etc.), people will subscribe from time to time for downloading, but stay with the site because of the quality, variety and the friendly "personnel".
I would advise, to stick with this very liberal policy of partly free contents. Because customers will stay with the site on the long run.

These are all points I hadn't thought of before actually. I expect that a dedicated downloader would currently be able to download the whole site in a few days if they wanted. The advantage of the longer subscriptions is party to give time to browse/download to busier patrons, but also to give access to new updates. I certainly have no intention to control or limit downloading; I'm more interested in releasing enough tempting new material to induce people to re-subscribe.

I'm firmly convinced that free/semi-free content is a sound business model, I get very frustrated with the websites that keep everything of value within a members area. Glad you agree!

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