You can’t have a media site without video, and apparently, if a little video is good, a lot of video is better. It’s the heart and soul of entertainment sites. It’s de rigueur for the broadcast news networks.
And the Web has given traditional print journalism brands the opportunity to compete on broadcast journalism’s video turf. New technology has made it almost as easy to shoot, edit and post a video online as to prepare a written story with accompanying photos. Online media sites, with help from YouTube, have enabled a mass Web audience that prefers to watch rather than read.
There’s also no faster way to lose an audience than with a video stream that stutters and constantly stops to rebuffer. But again, monitoring streams from multiple servers or domains, and understanding actual end-user performance, is a significant test and measurement challenge.
The type of content that resides on Web sites today can be as varied as rich media applications, bi-directional social media feeds, images or video delivered by CDNs, and, of course, ads delivered by ad networks. This content is important in driving business and enhancing the user experience (UX) to any online site. However, these enhanced features can also come with risk that can be in direct relationship to the amount of added third-party content.
With constant enhancements in available content and the desire of users for more interactivity in their data and social media, the amount of third-party content will only increase, this is where website availability monitoring plays its role. Each widget, plug-in, and script is an opportunity to slow down and negatively impact Web site performance, and so can negatively impact the user experience.