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Video abstract – to impress the editor or the general public

As the video abstract concept is getting quite an attention by different group of people, a new question is circling around these days among authors and creators. An abstract in general is mandatory for an article or book or publication of any kind but if video abstract becomes the new norm, all publishers will then put forth a guidelines of their own kind to prepare a video abstract if using their publishing platform. This may come to any author’s insouciant mind that a good publisher’s guidelines to creating a video abstract must be a better one than the ordinary ones. Because, without any defined standard, it’s hard to work on the video production. A set of guidelines to creating a video abstract could well impress an editor but if it does not resonate the broader audience, it will hardly be watched. Therefore, the content or script for a video abstract should be crafted to tailor the general public first without hurting editor's guidelines.

The important question to ask is if the video abstract is created solely to impress an editor with the best English skills used, no grammar mistakes and the quality use of vocabulary, or it is for everyone using the simplest English possible, having a little fun & humor, easy tone of language use, and reflecting less care on academic rigor and gravity. As an author, you might think of the Set theory, you will be on the lookout for the union of the Venn diagram where a little bit of both the views can be found. A situation like this which, although baffles most researchers, is nevertheless easy to cope with.

Let’s think of a scenario where there are 6 articles published so far and all are talking about the same topic but with a little bit of differences in methodologies or parameters used etc. All 6 of the articles come with 6 different video abstracts. Let’s suppose first 3 of them more or less covers all the main points why the topic is getting attention and research in this area needs to be conducted. These three video abstracts do not follow any specific guidelines except the fact that the overall quality of the videos and the content are moderate to assimilate. The rest 3 videos are to-the point but so hard to grasp. These 3 videos could be appreciated by the editors as these are impeccably produced. At this point, all the 6 videos are equally important. Because if someone starts watching one of the last 3 videos and could not correlate what’s going on, would be happy to watch one or all of the first 3 videos. To aggravate this situation, you can think of a couple of new video abstracts from a recent conference and a book talking about the same title. At the same time, some authors also produced some explainer videos without any formal publication. So the whole point what we are trying to establish is that the reason of creating of a video abstract is not to appease an editor but to serve the common need of good explanation and better understanding.

Here timing of the publication plays a vital role, because the earlier video abstract of same topics could come with basic and general information. But as time passes, similar explanation for the later video abstracts could make those worthless. At this point, it would be pragmatic to refer a previous video abstract as a citation for the basic definition and explanation why this topic is getting trendy and a further exploration is needed.

Now, a new question arises from the last paragraph. Can a video abstract be citable? Is it really worth it? But if you remember from the publication guidelines, you are not allowed to bring any reference in your abstract.

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