But CAN you take it?

Jeffrey Branzburg recently wrote an article for Technology and Learning (techLEARNING.com) entitled “You Can Take it With You” (How to integrate video segments in curriculum – without worry). To summarize, Branzburg is teaching us how to download video clips from YouTube, Google Video, etc (as they might blocked through many school districts).

Here are his suggestions for showing ‘blocked’ videos in class:

  1. Link to the video or embed the video code in a blog or website
  2. Video Downloader 2.0 (http://javimoya.com/blog/youtube_en.php)
  3. Vixy.net (www.vixy.net)
  4. Zamzar (www.zamzar.com)

But the question still remains – even if we can download these internet videos – should we? Some of the content on these sites is illegally posted, so by showing this content in class, you could be violating copyright laws. Ok – so avoid downloading episodes or clips from major networks. What about content that’s NOT stolen from network and cable television?

Here’s the legalese – the YouTube Terms of Use (section 6 part C) allows its users to “…use, reproduce, distribute, display and perform such User Submissions as permitted through the functionality of the Website and under these Terms of Service.” The catch here is “through the functionality of the Website”. So by downloading content outside of the website, you are technically violating the agreement.

Thus, legally – it is ok to link to and embed code from YouTube and Google Video. But be careful when you bypass their user agreements to download their content.

[also posted on explodingsink.com]


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  1. Jeffrey Branzburg said:


    I would think that the “fair use” provisions of the copyright law would make it OK for teachers to download for limited use, although I am not a lawyer.

  2. Tim Childers said:

    Zamzar has an agreement with YouTube (and several other video sites) that allows users to use their site to download videos, so that should cover the “functionality of the Website” clause.

  3. Jeffrey Branzburg said:

    Tim – do you know where on the Zamzar site the YouTube agreement is mentioned?

    I’d like to amend the online version of my article on the Techlearning website to reflect this info.


    Jeff Branzburg

  4. Jeffrey Branzburg said:

    An interesting point about copyright is that an original work is automatically copyrighted when it is created – home videos included. The work only moves outside of copyright under certain circumstances (e.g., the copyright period ends or the copyright holder specifically puts it in the public domain). So Zamzar’s policy re copyrighted material would hold for all works unless specifically released from copyright.

    I still think educators would have a strong case for downloading under the fair use provisions.

  5. James said:

    I found this amazing website that supports all media files conversion it is called http://youconvertit.com, they can do the following:
    1- Convert document, images, audio, video and Archived files.
    2- Convert any Youtube and other Online Video to popular formats or download the video
    3- Send file(s) up to 300 MB to friends or post it on any forum for 7 days
    4- Convert any type of units (Acceleration, Area, Torque and others)

    what makes them amazing is you can add up to 5 different file formats, i used them to convert a document and couple of audio files.

    Try them and give me your feedback http://www.youconvertit.com

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