Tokenistic captions on NSS Official Video 2013

Dire captions on NSS Official video


More and more people are using the YouTube caption tool in the belief it offers information in an alternative format but it doesn’t. If it wasn’t so serious, you could say it offers a laugh – like the example above which shows the caption for all Student’s Unions, Associations and Guilds – and there are many other examples in this video alone which demonstrate just how much the caption tool is tokenism.

Multimedia has great potential for teaching and learning. It suits a range of learning preferences and offers variety and interaction with content. However, to be inclusive it needs to be provided in alternative formats and this is the step most people miss.  If you use YouTube captions take the time to check them out; the chances are they’ll be to poor to be of any real value.

Guide to Getting started with YouTube captions and transcripts  YouTube 


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 Sarah’s Story is a 90 second video designed for television and banned by Clearcast, the television watchdog, as containing images that were ‘too distressing’. The aim of the advert was to raise awareness of Motor Neuron Disease. Thankfully, by banning it, Clearcast have increased publicity of both MND and the MND Association. Its wrong when the reality of disease, deformity and disablement is considered ‘too distressing’ and something we should be protected from. It should be the other way around. Every application of the label disability involves a person and these attitudes both devalue and diminish status. For more information about the ban see the Telegraph 25/07/09  and the Transcript from You and Yours, Radio 4 30/07/09 


I like the word cloud effect at Wordle. It’s great fun and useful for highlighting key issues in a document. But beware – the back browser button will take you to the home page and the forward button the create page. If you see a word cloud you like then save it quickly – or do a screen grab like I did here (click onto the image for a closer view). These are my  Delicious tags – as you can see, I use You Tube quite a lot!

word cloud
word cloud

Web 2.0 tools (1)

I’ve been thinking about the best way to approach the issue of Web 2.0 tools – a chunk of text didn’t feel like the answer – so I’ve opted for letting YouTube do the talking in this post (all the links below open in a new window)

Finally Web 2.0 (5.18) by Utechtips compares the various features between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0

As well as YouTube there is now TeacherTube which is dedicated to educational video clips.