The latent potential of YouTube – Will it become the 21st century lecturer’s film archive?

Adam Micolich


YouTube ( is an online, public-access videosharing site that allows users to post short streaming-video submissions for open viewing. Along with Google, MySpace, Facebook, etc. it is one of the great
success stories of the Internet, and is widely used by many of today’s undergraduate students. The higher education sector has recently realised the potential of YouTube for presenting teaching resources/material to students, and publicising research. This article considers another potential use for online video archiving web sites such as YouTube and GoogleVideo in higher education – as an online video archive providing thousands of hours of video footage for use in
lectures. In this article I will discuss why this might be useful, present some examples that demonstrate the potential for YouTube as a teaching resource, and highlight some of the copyright and legal issues that currently impact on the
effective use of new online video web sites, such as YouTube, for use as a teaching resource.

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