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    Brightcove Player Sample: Are You Still Watching?

    In this topic, you will learn how to create a Brightcove Player that detects when the viewer has stopped watching, while leaving the video playing.

    Player example

    In this sample you will see after a set amount of time, an overlay message is displayed. This sample will display the overlay in 6 seconds, but the time is configurable. If the viewer clicks the message within a specified time, then playback continues. If not, the video is paused. This technique is useful if you have long-form content. This will keep you from wasting bandwidth on viewers who start playing a video and then leave to do something else without bothering to stop it.

    This sample uses an open source Video.js Plugin located at https://github.com/TylerZubke/Videojs-AFK-Monitor. The sample code in this document will utilize this plugin.

    See the Pen Are you Still Watching? by Brightcove Learning Services (@rcrooks1969) on CodePen.

    Source code

    View the complete solution on GitHub.

    Using the CodePen

    Here are some tips to effectively use the above CodePen:

    • Toggle the actual display of the player by clicking the Result button.
    • Click the HTML/CSS/JS buttons to display ONE of the code types.
    • Later in this document the logic, flow and styling used in the application will be discussed in the Player/HTML configuration, Application flow and Application styling sections. The best way to follow along with the information in those sections is to:
      1. Click the EDIT ON CODEPEN button in the CodePen and have the code available in one browser/browser tab.
      2. In CodePen, adjust what code you want displayed. You can change the width of different code sections within CodePen.
      3. View the Player/HTML configuration, Application flow and/or Application styling sections in another browser/browser tab. You will now be able to follow the code explanations and at the same time view the code.

    Development sequence

    Here is the recommended development sequence:

    1. Use the In-Page embed player implementation to test the functionality of your player, plugin and CSS (if CSS is needed)
    2. Put the plugin's JavaScript and CSS into separate files for local testing
    3. Deploy the plugin code and CSS to your server once you have worked out any errors
    4. Use Studio to add the plugin and CSS to your player
    5. Replace the In-Page embed player implementation if you determine that the iframe implementation is a better fit (detailed in next section)

    For details about these steps, review the Step-by-Step: Plugin Development guide.

    iframe or In-Page embed

    When developing enhancements for the Brightcove Player you will need to decide if the code is a best fit for the iframe or In-Page embed implementation. The best practice recommendation is to build a plugin for use with an iframe implementation. The advantages of using the iframe player are:

    • No collisions with existing JavaScript and/or CSS
    • Automatically responsive
    • The iframe eases use in social media apps (or whenever the video will need to "travel" into other apps)

    Although integrating the In-Page embed player can be more complex, there are times when you will plan your code around that implementation. To generalize, this approach is best when the containing page needs to communicate to the player. Specifically, here are some examples:

    • Code in the containing page needs to listen for and act on player events
    • The player uses styles from the containing page
    • The iframe will cause app logic to fail, like a redirect from the containing page

    Even if your final implementation does not use the iframe code, you can still use the In-Page embed code with a plugin for your JavaScript and a separate file for your CSS. This encapsulates your logic so that you can easily use it in multiple players.

    API/Plugin resources used

    API Methods API Events Brightcove Player Plugins
    addClass() useractive Overlay Plugin
    removeClass() userinactive  
    pause()    
    currentTime()    
    one()    
    on()    
    setTimeout()    
    hasClass()    
    duration()    
    paused()    
    clearTimeout()    
    hasStarted()    
    el()    

    Player/HTML configuration

    This section details any special configuration needed during player creation. In addition, other HTML elements that must be added to the page, beyond the in-page embed player implementation code, are described.

    Player configuration

    No special configuration is required for the Brightcove Player you create for this sample.

    Other HTML

    The third party plugin's CSS and JavaScript files are included.

    Application flow

    The basic logic behind this application is:

    • The useractive and userinactive events are watched to track time.
    • The overlay is displayed after the time specified to see if customer is still watching the video.
    • When the overlay has been displayed for the time you specify, and the text has not been clicked, pause the video.
    • When the button is clicked, or the viewer starts the video after pause, reinitialize values and start time tracking again.

    This sample uses the plugin

    The plugin is called using best practices, as shown here

      <script>
        videojs.getPlayer('myPlayerID').ready(function() {
          var myPlayer = this;
          var options = {'showMessageAfter': 1000, 'pausePlayerAfter': 1000};
          myPlayer.AFKMonitor(options);
        });
      </script>

    Configuring the plugin

    A number of options can be used to customize the plugin. Some details are:

    • A complete list of configuration options are found in the plugin's readme file.
    • The showMessageAfter (in milliseconds) determines the time before the button is displayed.
    • The pausePlayerAfter (in milliseconds) options is also helpful. This is time you allow the user to click the button before the player is paused. This give the user a chance to click the button without interrupting video playback.

    Application styling

    The CSS is part of the third party plugin.

    Plugin code

    You will want to clone the repo to access the code and then place it in an Internet accessible location for your use.

    As mentioned earlier, you can see the plugin's JavaScript code in this document's corresponding GitHub repo: videojs.afk-monitor.js.

    Using the plugin with a player

    Once you have the plugin's CSS and JavaScript files stored in an Internet accessible location, you can use the plugin with a player. In Studio's PLAYERS module you can choose a player, then in the PLUGINS section add the URLs to the CSS and JavaScript files, and also add the Name and Options, if options are needed.


    Page last updated on 28 Sep 2020