In 2010 Vimeo estimated that there are at least 1.6 million legal videographers worldwide. At the end of 2011 that number was up to 4.5 million, and in 2012 their website stated that “The vast majority” of people use the services, and that more than 1.1 million “use the service daily.” So while there is great potential for monetizing videos, there is also potential for negative consequences if not properly managed.
I worked for Vimeo for only six months. What did I learn?
First of all, they’re not exactly an open company or anything, so in the event of a conflict or even if you are told they are shutting down then it’s generally good practice to contact their legal department first to make sure an appeal is likely to get passed. It’s one thing to try to take a chance and create something that they like, but you have to take reasonable precautions. So far I haven’t seen a situation where someone’s account was shut down after using the service for a year. When I did start to have issues however, I would contact a lawyer to try and determine what other options I had. In the case that you have been asked to leave in a hurry (eg – you’re not paid up and need to leave immediately) and Vimeo will shut you down it’s fairly harmless. But in a more serious situation, it’s probably a good idea to contact your bank or credit union to ask for money. Or to see if you can work together (eg – if one person left, you can work together to keep your account running, and maybe find the source of the problem from within).
What if I don’t want to make a video?
There are certainly some situations where this situation might be more than an imputed “no”. Like someone wants to buy a $2,000 bicycle and then use it to buy a $500 bicycle (and they paid me for the bike). Or a friend who doesn’t want to use their smartphone (I think this is a common situation where I might be asked to provide a video of their phone). If it’s an unreasonable request then we’ve seen Vimeo delete the offending video quickly. That’s not necessarily bad behavior – they just probably have other things on their mind. But they do probably have to have had an impression that you are making a video. Maybe you’re wearing headphones and you don’t say “I’m not making a video” or something. If they were to tell you immediately
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