How long can a Group Hug be?

 How long a Group Hug montage can be? There are two aspects to this: the limits of the VidHug system, and making a great group video.

What are the limits of VidHug?

While we do offer guidance and suggestions (see below), we've never wanted to impose rules on our users when we don't have to. Your Group Hug is your creation. So since the beginning of VidHug, we have not imposed strict limits on individual video length (can be several minutes), the number of videos that can appear in a Group Hug, or the total length of a Group Hug. Our users have created Group Hugs featuring up to 100 videos (wow!) and being 50 minutes in total length. Whether that's a video anyone will have the stamina or attention span to watch is another question, but our system so far has been able to handle it. Bottom line: If you're creating something shorter than this, you should be fine.

If you're creating something longer than above, we cannot guarantee that our rendering process will be able to handle it. For content just a little bit longer; it may work and has done so in the past, but it may not; it depends on the individual videos themselves. You can give it a try but proceed at your own risk. For content much longer than this, it more than likely will not work (rendering will fail). We cannot offer custom support in these situations. If you have a Group Hug that has too much content in it, you will have to create another Group Hug and move some of the content over to it.

What makes a great Group Hug?

VidHug is all about making an incredible group gift. Most people are more deeply touched when 25 of their family and friends send them their love, instead of just one person. So it stands to reason that the more people that are involved in the Group Hug, the better, right? The answer is kind of.

While there is certainly strength in numbers, having a lower number of people (e.g. less than 10) in a Group Hug doesn't necessarily make the end-result any less powerful. Who the individuals are and the message they are conveying can have just as big an impact. For example, one VidHug user sent a small Group Hug containing just a handful of family members, but it encouraged her father as he headed into cancer surgery; was that video less impactful because it didn't contain a lot more people? We don't think so.

The other factor we often refer to is pacing. If a Group Hug is too long, the person receiving it may not have the stamina or attention span to watch it all and it may lose some impact. It's like receiving a birthday card where someone has written a 2000-word essay on the inside. Unless all of those words are highly impactful, that card will become... boring. 

The same goes for the individual videos within the Group Hug. While we certainly think that a spouse, parent, child or sibling might have more to say than a not-so-close friend, everyone should avoid recording a video that is several minutes long; it negatively affects the flow of the montage. Individual videos can also be too short, especially when you account for the half-second cross-fade transition. This is why we suggest an ideal time of between 10 and 60 seconds for each individual submission.

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