Why I prefer text to video

Videos are becoming more and more common on the internet, and for some things, like mentos and diet pepsi, they're hard to beat.  For things I'm seriously interested in, though, I prefer text.  Here's why:

  • Text goes at my speed.  I read quickly, and certainly faster than people can talk.  If I want to slow down and reread something, I can do that too.
  • Video, outside of actual video chats, is not interactive, so I don't get the benefits of being there, being able to interrupt, ask questions, and so on, that can make the 'in person' experience superior to just reading about something.
  • Text is searchable and indexable.  I can search within a page, and it's also more likely to be visible to search engines.
  • Text is easy to scan and glance at.
  • Given the ease of scanning text, it's also easier to filter: "is this something I want to invest more time in reading?".  In the time many videos use for people to simply introduce themselves, I could have already got an idea of a document is worth further perusal.
  • Text is easy to manipulate; cutting, pasting, quoting, etc… are all easy.
  • I don't have to put on headphones to read text if my wife is sleeping and I'm working late.
  • Text has good, and highly visible conventions (various headings and subheadings) for indicating subsections of a large document and what they may be about.

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