Duke Goes YouTube

October 1, 2008
Duke on YouTube

Since its inception in 2005, YouTube, a website that allows users to easily upload and share original videos, has grown rapidly in popularity. Recent news reports suggest that in any given month, tens of millions of users are watching billions of videos on the site.

Duke hopes to tap into that audience with its own YouTube channel, launched in May. The channel, which may be found at www. youtube.com/duke, compiles videos that highlight important Duke research, student projects, and various aspects of campus life.

Video content ranges from discussions of current events by faculty members to an explanation of the workings of a prototype invisibility cloak by its inventors and interviews with members of the golf team.

Duke is part of a growing roster of universities seeking to use the site as a way to reach out to potential students and other audiences. Staff members in Duke's news and communications office have been posting videos on YouTube for almost two years, but they hope that the channel will attract additional viewers.

Tracy Futhey, Duke's vice president for information technology and chief information officer, notes that Duke's focus on video grew from its experimentation with iPods and iTunes U.

"Our faculty and students are becoming more and more proficient and sophisticated video-content producers," she says, "and we want these valuable materials to reach their widest audience possible."