A client asked me…

Q.) Hi Roland. We are having a big event soon. How tricky would it be to live stream an event from our website?

A.) I’m going to take the easy route and say it’s less complicated to simply record the event and worry about posting it online later.

Embedding a video player on a page of your website is relatively easy. The streaming service would provide the code. There used to be many free services to do live video streaming (e.g., UStream). Now they’re drying up in favor of paid services. The challenges of capturing on location are what you really need to focus on.

Biggest challenges are recording, quality and Internet access:

  • How to record at the event. One method would be mount a SmartPhone or iPad or laptop to cover the room.
  • Audio quality — only as good as the built-in microphone.
  • Internet access to stream that video from location to the video streaming service. If the location doesn’t have Wi-fi, you’ll need to bring your own — most likely cellular. But consider if you were recording on your smartphone for an hour using cellular bandwidth, that might not be very reliable or could get expensive for the bandwidth you consumer.
  • Size of the room.
  • Lighting.
  • Noise generated by the people filling the room.

Instead, I recommend recording the event with a proper video camera and after the event upload it to YouTube or Vimeo. Then embed that video player on your website so people can watch on demand after the event. That way you’ll have less headaches trying to troubleshoot technical problems at the event and more time to focus on people in person.

I hope that’s helpful.