Magnify.net has introduced a plugin for Movable Type and WordPress that attempts to minimize the effort required to add multimedia content to a blog. Magnify.net is a video discovery and broadcast platform that provides a hosted framework for video distribution.
The plugin, called Magnify Publisher, allows bloggers to search and embed content from over a dozen media sites including YouTube and Flickr without ever leaving their blog’s admin panel. Publisher also allows bloggers to upload videos from their computer, and to record clips on a webcam (sort of like seesmic). After choosing a video or picture, users are free to rearrange and resize their media from within their blog’s WYSIWYG editor.
Magnify’s CEO Steve Rosenbaum sees the plugin as a gateway to an online ecosystem where bloggers are the curators of multimedia. While there are a number of other blogging plugins that offer similar functionality, Rosenbaum says that Magnify Publisher is the first to integrate media search, upload, and webcam features. Magnify hopes that this combination will spur bloggers to regularly include more multimedia content in their posts.
I’m a little less optimistic. The plugin works fairly well and is easy to use (though the generic gray buttons really need a facelift), but it isn’t going to pave the way for a media revolution. Bloggers don’t typically include loads of media in their posts because it can be distracting – not because it is overly difficult to find an appropriate photo or upload a YouTube video. That said, Publisher is a handy tool that cuts out tedious steps and will appeal to many bloggers who aren’t tech-savy enough to fiddle with embed codes. Just don’t expect it to change the face of blogging forever.