They Paid Me to Give You a Tour of the Internet

Custom Wordpress plugin and onboarding widget for the art criticism site, temporaryartreview.com. By art collective Anxious to Make.

OVERVIEW

They Paid Me to Give You a Tour of the Internet was commissioned by Temporary Art Review for Document V. The project ran from March 25, 2016 to May 20, 2016 on temporaryartreview.com. It is now archived here.

SCOPE

Working under the umbrella of Anxious to Make, our team developed a interruptive marketing style, onboarding widget for the art criticism site, temporaryartreview.com.

We hired a voice over actor to play a virtual tour guide that walks visitors through five pieces of content selected by the editors of the site.

The virtual tour guide literally walks on to the bottom right corner of each article, where he comments and interacts with the texts on each page, while self-reflecting on his role as a “hired gig-actor” vying for the reader’s attention, or “psychic energy”.

Anyone who finishes the tour can enter a sweepstakes, with lots of winning prizes.

Custom Software

I made a custom video player capable of playing HTML5 video with alpha channel transparencies, using the seeThru library.

I built a Wordpress plugin to facilitate easy install/deinstall of the project on Temporary Art Review’s site.

ROLE

Javascript Developer, Wordpress Plugin Developer, UI Designer, Artist as Content Marketer

Team comprised of one other person, Liat Berdugo, who focused on screenwriting.

PROCESS

TECHINCAL

After receiving green screen footage from our voiceover actor, I edited and prepared videos for each of the five tour sections.

still of voiceover actor in editing software

Editing green screen footage in Adobe Premiere

After pulling my hair out trying to understand alpha compositing and wtf un-premultiplying was, I prepared source images in Adobe After Effects, by placing each RGBA video in a composition, doubling the composition height, and duplicating the footage layer with a white Alpha Track Matte, resulting in:

video is duplicated and stacked vertically

Format required by the HTML5 video library, seeThru

Using seeThru, I created a simple video player in Javascript. It includes options to pause, mute, and resume:

(function( $ ) {
  
  var playing = false;
  var videoObj = document.querySelector('#anxious-video');
  var playButton = document.querySelector('#anxious-play');
  var pauseButton = document.querySelector('#anxious-pause');
  var closeButton = $('#anxious-close');
  var infoButton = $('#anxious-info');
  var resume = $('#anxious-resume');
  var next = $('#anxious-next');
  var controls = $('#anxious-controls');
  var mediaPlayer = $('#anxious-media-player');
  var video = seeThru
  .create('#anxious-video', { start: 'autoplay', end : 'stop'})
  .ready(function(instance, video, canvas){
    video.addEventListener('ended', function(){
        infoButton.remove();
        closeButton.hide();
        next.show();
    });
  });

  playButton.addEventListener('click', function() {
    videoObj.play();
    playing = true;
  });
  pauseButton.addEventListener('click', function() {
    videoObj.pause();
    playing = false;
  });
  videoObj.addEventListener('click', function() {
    videoObj[playing ? 'pause' : 'play']();
    playing = !playing;
  });
  videoObj.addEventListener('mouseover', function(){
    controls.fadeIn();
  });
  mediaPlayer.on('mouseleave', function(){
    controls.fadeOut();
  }); 

  closeButton.on('click', function(){
    videoObj.pause();
    mediaPlayer.hide();
    resume.show();
  });

  infoButton.on('click', function(){
    resume.hide();
    mediaPlayer.fadeIn();
    videoObj.play();
  });

})( jQuery );

ux highlighting pause/mute and play/resume feature

Designing UX for "polite" interruptive marketing

HTML block containing the video player and appropriate files for each web page on the tour:

<!--START ANXIOUS TO MAKE INTERVENTION -->
<div class="anxious-to-intervene">
  <div id="anxious-media-player">
    <div id="anxious-controls">
      <span id="anxious-play" class="fa fa-play fa-lg"></span> 
      <span id="anxious-pause" class="fa fa-pause fa-lg"></span>
      <span id="anxious-close" class="fa fa-ban fa-lg"></span>
    </div>
    <video autoplay id="anxious-video">
      <source src="media/vopete1.mp4" type="video/mp4" />
      <source src="media/vopete1.webm" type="video/webm" /> 
      <source src="media/vopete1.ogv" type="video/ogg" />
    </video>
  </div>
  <div id="anxious-info"><span id="anxious-resume" class="fa fa-bullhorn fa-lg"></span></div>
  <div id="anxious-next"><a href="tar2.html"><span class="fa fa-hand-o-right fa-lg"></span></a></div>
</div>
<!--END ANXIOUS TO MAKE INTERVENTION -->

CSS styles:

#anxious-media-player{
  position: fixed;
  right: 0;
  bottom: -6px;
  z-index: 999999;
}
#anxious-controls{
  position: absolute;
  bottom: 30%;
  right: 45%;
  display: none;
}
#anxious-play, #anxious-pause, #anxious-next {
  display: none;
}
#anxious-resume{
  display: none;
  position: fixed;
  bottom: 0;
  right: 0;
}
#anxious-next {
  position: fixed;
  z-index: 999999;
  bottom: 0;
  right: 0;
  text-transform: uppercase;
  font-family: sans-serif; 
  background-color: #FF0179;
  padding: 0;
} 
#anxious-next:hover,
#anxious-next:hover * {
  color: #FF0179;
  background-color: yellow;
}
#anxious-next a {
  text-decoration: none;
  color: yellow;
}

/* font awesome custom styles */
.fa{
  color: yellow;
  background-color: #FF0179;
  cursor: pointer;
  padding: 7px 5px;
}
.fa:hover{
  color: #FF0179;
  background-color: yellow;
}

Activating the Wordpress Plugin:

Wordpress admin panel

Wordpress admin panel

Seriously, the most beautiful Wordpress moment of my life:

Wordpress admin panel

Plugin as medium

OUTCOME

walk on video with alpha channel and sound

Interactive tour of Temporary Art Review

sweepstakes page

Sweepstakes page / making forms fun again!

Take the tour!

SUCCESS METRICS

  • The sweepstakes page had a 51% Conversion Rate!*

  • Bounce Rate for sweepstakes page was 56.41% and the Exit Rate 12.43%, which means people were happy to on the site.

  • Pageviews were 4.5x Unique Pageviews, which means lots of revisits and page refreshes.

*And yes, this excludes people who tried to enter more than once.

CREDITS: ANXIOUS TO MAKE IS THE COLLABORATIVE PRACTICE OF LIAT BERDUGO + EMILY MARTINEZ