Gif powerhouse Giphy is getting ready to more closely align itself with existing video platforms: Giphy launched a partnership with IAC-owned Vimeo Thursday that will combine Gifs with Vimeo videos, giving users the ability to switch between short Gif clips and the original source videos, complete with sound.
At the center of the new partnership is Giphy’s new embed player, which the company is promoting as a simple way to bring Gifs to third-party websites. The new version of the player, which launched Thursday, also includes the original video for any Gif that was generated from a Vimeo video. Users simply have to click on the Vimeo icon within the player to switch to the video to watch the clip in its entirety.
“Gifs and videos always had a relationship,” said Giphy’s director of brand strategy Julie Logan. With the new player, Vimeo now wants to make this a two-way street, and help video producers drive traffic to their original works. That’s especially helpful if those original videos are part of a branded content deal, and every video view may be important to their bottom line. “It’s going to be a powerful tool for creators,” she said.
However, there’s one caveat: Giphy is only able to embed both the Gif and the source video if it actually knows which Gif a video is from. The company already encourages uploaders of Gifs to link to the source of a video, and Giphy’s Gif creation tools automatically add such a source link — but Giphy isn’t able to embed the original video if a user happens to upload a Gif from a Vimeo clip without mentioning or even knowing the source.
Ultimately, Giphy may add some kind of automatic fingerprinting or content recognition solution to its service to automate this process, said Logan. “This is the first step for us.” The company also plans to add support for additional video hosting platforms to its embed player in the future, said Jason Stein Giphy Director of Business Development: “We ultimately want this technology to work across the internet.”