Tuesday, 13 March 2012

A 'Cleaner' YouTube

I spent the last two days working with my literacy advisory colleagues and a group of primary school teachers. This working party was looking at the use of the 'moving image' in the primary school classroom, devising some ideas for teachers in using BFI DVD resources and also other film clips. There was also quite a lot of discussion about the use of YouTube around copyright, comments, adverts, and general use in the classroom. I could talk about the copyright issues all day, so we'll leave that issue to one side for a moment and concentrate on the other areas of discussion. Our authority is quite forward thinking when it comes to YouTube and therefore all schools have access to it unless individually a school wants it blocked. But I do realise that in many local authorities across Wales YouTube is blocked at the local authority level, stopping schools having access and this has become quite a discussion point in recent meetings I've had with colleagues from across Wales. The issue that the teachers were talking about today was the problem they have with inappropriate comments that can appear underneath the videos and the related videos that appear alongside the it. Is there anyway to get rid of these? Well there is. I remembered that some time ago I downloaded an extension to my Safari browser that stripped YouTube of related videos and comments, giving it a very clean, minimalist look.

A 'Cleaner' YouTube Page
I'd forgotten where the extension came from but a quick Google search pointed me in the direction of 'A Cleaner Internet'. Here you can download extensions for Chrome, Safari and Firefox web browsers. Works wonderfully well on my Chrome and Safari browsers, however I'm not aware how well this would work over corporate managed networks, but I am going to speak to our 'techy' guys to look into it. Could be a solution teachers are looking for?