Video syntax

Waylan Limberg waylan at
Wed Sep 15 21:24:20 EDT 2010

On Wed, Sep 15, 2010 at 6:47 PM, David Chambers
<david.chambers.05 at> wrote:

> Of course, this markup applies to YouTube but may not apply to other

> services. That being the case, though, I'd still benefit from a `youtube:`

> solution since 80% or more of the videos I embed are YouTube videos. The

> fact that I'd need to include HTML for the other 20% does not deter me.

I suppose personal projects have been implemented for much less
convincing reasons. But if all your implementing is youtude support,
then I'd call it that. `youtude:...` not 'video:...`. Although I
suppose your trying to come up with a syntax for the more general use
case and then move on from there to the more specific. I guess it's
that general use case that I don't see the need for and the reason for
my objection. With a clearer picture of what you actually what to
accomplish, my objections have lessoned.

> One thing that I'd like to make clear, Waylan, is that I'm raising the issue

> on this list because it's a great place for such a discussion, not because

> I'm expecting any of the Markdown implementations to support such syntax.

I guess I understood that. Sorry if that didn't come through in my
response. I still see developing a syntax for video in general a waste
for the reasons previously stated, so I guess I was trying to
discourage a useless discussion, but if you're really only interested
in a simple syntax to easily embed videos from youtube, vimeo and the
like - and not necessarily expecting it to be an all encompassing
solution for any embedded video, then I can see how that could be
useful as third party add-on to markdown. And this is certainly the
place to get good feedback on a solution.

> Last night another option occurred to me: `[Video: Soda Pop

> Stop](`.

> The reason that I find this option so appealing is that the above remains

> valid Markdown in non-Mango contexts. Mango will perform preprocessing to

> convert this to the appropriate video markup, but without this preprocessing

> the line would simply be converted to a descriptive link.

I actually like this. It introduces nothing new, will not trip up
unmodified implementations of markdown and still provides enough clues
to embed a video properly (assuming a known source is used).

Despite what I said above, I suppose you would *not* want to do:

[YouTube: Soda Pop Stop](gPbh6Ru7VVM)

While that is more specific and won't create false expectations that
the syntax will work for any type of video, it won't provide a useful
link in an unmodified markdown parser. Perhaps as a safe middleground
I'd suggest:

[YouTube: Soda Pop Stop](

While I realize youtube can be extracted from parsing the url, by
doing the syntax this way, it is more clear to users that this only
works for supported known (and popular) video hosting sites. No false
expectations about it working for every possible video out there. And
maybe in the future when all those variables needed to embed html5
video tags are simplified, a more basic [video: ...] syntax could be
adopted as well.

I think that's the root of my concern. If you call it '[video:...]'
you will get complaints insisting that every possible use case for
embedded video be supported - which is just not practical today (as
you acknowledge). But if you call it '[youtube:...]` or `[vimeo:...]`,
etc., then if others want support for a specific as yet unsupported
use-case, they can develop it themselves and maybe even provide their
solution for public consumption. But hey, it's your project that you
will be maintaining. What do I care?
\X/ /-\ `/ |_ /-\ |\|
Waylan Limberg

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