Talking-Head Video Is Boring Online : Jakob Nielsen has published a bit about how bad video apparently is for the Web.
What’s interesting is his eye-tracking study, where he shows you what someone looks at while they’re watching video. He has an image which show where the viewer’s eyes rested, and he also has a video (WMV link) that shows where their eyes traveling in real-time while watching the video.
It’s more interesting to notice how much attention was diverted elsewhere in the image, including the road sign behind the interviewee. There’s even a brief glance at an object over his shoulder that looks like a trash can.
Most interesting of all is the tremendous attention spent outside the video itself on things such as alternative headlines and video controls.
The eyetracking data clearly show that a talking head is boring, even for 24 seconds. On the Web, 24 seconds is a long time — too long for users to keep their attention on something monotonous.