Change the First Frame of Your Embedded Video and Have it Start Playing Automatically

In the video below, I’ll show you how you can modify the embed code so you can use whatever image you want as the first frame. The first frame is what appears behind the Play button before the viewer clicks it. Since many videos start with a fade from black, the first frame is black. This isn’t always the best first impression.

Update: The image you use for the first frame should be hosted on The video is not clear on this, and it won’t work if you reference an image on Flickr, etc.

I’ll also show you how you can add a special “flashvar” so the video starts plays as soon as the viewer loads the page. This can be a little disconcerting and a lot of people like to be in control of starting the video. (Click here to jump right to the part about auto-playing videos.)

Posted in Tips & How To's
Mike Curtis

Mike Curtis is an Educational Technologist at TechSmith. He works closely with the User Assistance team, doing what he can to help everyone be successful with our products.