It's only four days since Twitter launched its Vine video service (see Vine: A new way to share video), but already sites are springing up to show Vine videos outside Twitter. The early runners include Vine Peek, Just Vined, Vinesmap, Vine Roulette and All Around the Vines. Users can also choose to post Vine videos on Tumblr or their own websites.
Vine is an Apple iPhone (and soon, Android) app that enables users to capture six seconds of video, post it to Twitter, and have it watched in their tweet. Viewers don't need to visit an external site.
Twitter is known for microcontent -- tweets are up to 140 characters long -- and Vine is a microcontent form of video, much like animated gif images.
At the moment, many people are still sending #firstvine tweets so the content is spectacularly mediocre. It started with quick views of journalists' desks, or coffee shops, and now seems to be used mainly for loops of small dogs and either babies or toddlers.
Obviously, television broadcasters and film makers are going to use it, as they already have suitable content. In the long run, however, the format could also appeal to companies as a short-form advertising or promotional vehicle. Users have set the quality bar so low that any well-crafted and preferably amusing vines could go viral.
People who don't use Vine, or don't even use Twitter, can also watch vines using one of the websites that have sprung up since the launch. These include:
About as basic as it gets: it shows one random Vine video after another on a plain web page, but at a decent size.
Shows 20 vines at the same time in a page-filling display (which uses a lot more processing power). Clicking on a video shows it in a pop-up frame.
Shows Vine videos in frames, overlaid on a map of the world. You can't click on a pin to run a video from a particular place, so the map doesn't add much.
The only one that has a search box, so you can type in a word and get related videos. Only one video runs at a time. (Note: uses Silverlight.)
The only one that fills the browser window with the Vine video, but then it puts the tweet on top.
If you know of any more good ones, please let me know in the comments below.
Please note that Vine videos are not moderated and some may be Not Safe For Work. Of course, this is also true of tweeted images.
Users with the Vine app can also abort the sending of their tweet, then look for the video in the camera roll. Vine video files are saved as MOV files that can be uploaded to other services. Vine videos can also be used on ordinary web pages. Drew B has explained the technique on his tech PR website: Hacking Vine: How to embed a Vine video on to your website.