Video without the distractions
Video sharing sites provide a wealth of content, examples, and mentor texts that we can turn to as we explore digital writing and media creation. But often the sites themselves contain comments and discussion threads that can distract from a focus on the video or can introduce offensive or disturbing material in a classroom setting.
Recently I found a wonderful video that I wanted to share broadly, but when I looked at the site where it was hosted I saw a very prominent thread of racist remarks that stopped me from sending out the URL. No moderation. No way to flag inappropriate comments. No embed code to move the video to another place, like a blog, to recontextualize it.
This common dilemma is one that quietube aims to solve. Quietube allows you to watch online video from an increasing number of services, like YouTube, viddler, and Vimeo, on a basic white screen with no comments or discussion threads. It also creates a tinyURL that you can use to point viewers to your ‘distraction-free’ version of the video.
As educators, I believe that it is vitally important that we help young people learn how to navigate the actual environments — discussion threads and all — of media sharing sites. That includes learning about how to comment, how to moderate, how to react to disturbing content, and how to ignore it too. Many of these sites provide teachable moments for these important skills. But sometimes, it’s just not that moment. That’s when you might want to reach for quietube.