Monday, February 25, 2008

Competition for Divshare? esnips gives Div a run!

So here's the dilemma.

I'm cheap.

There it is.

I need free file storage until this whole digital life of mine starts paying for itself (those of you clicking on ads and donating GAWD BLESS YOU). For the run of this blog, I've been trying to find easy and free ways to link or embed media. Most of what I produce for this site is audio (go figure), and all of the video is handled by other sites. I personally use Revver for the few vids I've made, but Youtube, 5Min, Funny or Die, MetaCafe, all have me covered for video content.

Audio, however, has been tricky. I haven't found a good solution, and sites that look like the holy-grail-youtube-for-audio (like Odeo) end up being to slow, or having odd limitations (like only linking to audio not storing it). For a while I considered just making everything a vid and uploading to the video sites, but those files get big, and I don't want to do yet another round of editing once I've already trimmed and cleaned a recording.

Enter the world of online file storage.
I started with sites like YouSendIt and MediaFire, to send files larger than 10MB to clients. As they evolved, it allowed me to add links to posts so people could download my stuff. Later I stumbled onto DivShare, which allowed me to embed a player. Now people could listen to the audio right from the blog, without having to download anything or navigate to another page to hear stuff.
The problem with DivShare is it can have odd periods of down time. It can be really slow to upload, and sometimes the player can get locked up. It's good for free, but I have a hard time relying on it as this blog gets bigger.

In this continuing search for free file storage, I've just stumbled onto a service called esnips. It's a lot like DivShare, allowing for file storage and embedded players, but it also has a community aspect. You tag your info, and people with similar interests and media can be exposed to your stuff.

I'm trying it out now. So far I don't love the players you can embed, but it seems pretty quick. Over the next couple weeks, I might start moving content over to esnips.

Both services offer 5GB of storage for free, and you can pay for more. That's a lot of space for audio, even uncompressed.
If you need free hosting for your demos, or to send audio to clients, I would seriously check out both Divshare and esnips.

Here's the esnips player:
Get this widget | Track details | eSnips Social DNA

And the Divshare player:


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