As AOL prepares close its user-generated site on Dec. 18, it is recommending that users switch their files to Motionbox, the small New York-based video sharing site.  This development was first reported yesterday by Michael Arrington at TechCrunch who published AOL’s FAQ’s on the service change.

Chris O’Brien at Motionbox has built an impressive platform.  It is the first which allowed users to share specific moments in a video through an online timeline. The company has has e-commerce offerings and its business model is a paid subscription.  One unique value is that videos uploaded in high quality are downloaded at the same quality, not compressed as is done on most UGC sites.   

One very cool tool on the upload site is the ability for users to upload HD cameara files directly to the site.  We think this is really valuable as converting camera files can be a huge hassle, often involving third party software.

Last November, I caught up with Chris at the Beet.TV studio.  I’ve republished the video today.

Beet.TV regrets it will lose its channel on AOL Video Upload and hopes to move clips to Motionbox soon.  Congrats Chris on this big win.

Update: 11/17 — Caroline McCarthy at CNET has confirmed the plans at AOL.

Andy Plesser, Executive Producer