Week 9 Thing #20 YouTube

In several previous posts, I embedded videos from various sources, so I think I’ve covered this “Thing” already in my blog. Although I do enjoy the occasional cute kitten video or funny political video from YouTube, I must admit that most of it is not classroom material.

I will say that TeacherTube is a GREAT site for educators though. Our district seems to be particularly conservative as far as which web sites are allowed, and even WE can get to TeacherTube from school! At least it wasn’t blocked earlier in the summer–we’ll see if that sticks! That’s good news though, because I’ve found many videos there that are worth sharing. While it doesn’t have nearly the number of videos on it, most of them are more usable for the classroom than what proliferates on YouTube.

What I think is more exciting, is the idea of these video sharing sites–the impact they and a whole Web2.0 mentality are having on the wider culture. In the recent Democratic Presidential debate and the upcoming Republican Debate, CNN and YouTube are working to combine their resources to allow people to ask candidates questions by video online. The Democrats even ended up taking a question from a sock puppet. Wow. Now, not surprisingly, many of the Republican candidates are refusing to “play along.”

I think it’s all very interesting that we happen to be immersed in thinking about these web tools, and here they are making national news in this way. I wonder what the final outcome will be? Will the Democrats ultimately pay the price for catering to the “cool” crowd? Will the Republicans stoically refuse to embrace this new technology and end up paying the price instead? Will it all just blow over and turn out to be a non-issue? Or is this truly a cultural turning point as to how, and how immediately, candidates have to respond to their (potential) constituents? Interesting times…

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