One of the Webware 100 award winners for 2008 was an “online media album” called VoiceThread, first introduced to me by Joanna Young.
I played around with the web-based tool a bit, bookmarked it to
revisit later, and then promptly misplaced the link in
my over-stuffed bookmarks folder that really must get sorted out one of
Gayle Thorsen of IMPACTMAX
brought VoiceThread back to mind, recently, when she featured it as her
free tool of the week. Gayle also has some great ideas for
how non-profits can use VoiceThread to engage their supporters in a compelling, collaborative online story — and
I’ll bet you’ll have your own ideas to add to that list, when you see
what VoiceThread can do!
What is a VoiceThread?
A VoiceThread is an online media album that allows a group of
people to make comments on images, videos, and documents, really
simply. You can participate 5 different ways - using your voice (with a
microphone or telephone), text, audio file, or video (with a webcam).
It’s easy to control who can access and comment on a VoiceThread, which
makes it a secure place to talk about almost anything: business and
academic presentations, travelogues, family history, art critiques,
language study, tutorials, book clubs and digital storytelling.
VoiceThread allows an entire group conversation to be collected from
anywhere in the world and then shared in one simple place.
Browse the Digital Library at VoiceThread.com to see what others have been doing with this tool. My current favorite is Letters from the Internment Camps,
a remarkable education project in which students at a California
elementary school explore the internment of Japanese-Americans after
the 1941 bombing of Pearl Harbor — and internment-camp survivors
respond to the students’ messages with personal stories of their
Free accounts let you create 3 VoiceThread projects with a maximum of 50 pages
each and a total of 75MB in storage. There’s no limitation on the
number of people who can participate, view and comment. See the VoiceThread Pricing page for details on their Pro, Business, Higher Ed, and K-12 packages.
How might your non-profit use VoiceThread to tell the stories of your cause?