This past week I deployed my first change to the Khan Academy website (other than my About listing).
Every video on the Khan Academy website now has a nifty little “Info” button underneath it. It pops up a dialog showing the name of the video author, the date the video was uploaded, a link to download the video, and the copyright information of the video.
Okay, so it’s cute. But it actually serves to do a few important things:
1) Higlight our “non-Sal” authors. Sal made the majority of videos on Khan Academy (and continues to do so). However, he is gradually receiving more and more help. In fact, Khan Academy has videos from several other team members: Vi Hart, Elizabeth Slavitt, Rishi Desai, Brit Cruise, Karl Wendt, Steven Zucker, Beth Harris. Now, users will be able to easily see who made a particular video, especially if they recognize that it doesn’t have Sal’s voice.
Important to note: the author’s name still takes an extra click to reach. You have to actually click on “Info” and wait for the tooltip to come up. Why not always display the author’s name right under the video? This was a deliberate decision: the “who” behind a video is still secondary to the “what” of the video. The content is what’s important, and we won’t distract you with auxiliary information about the video unless you’re looking for it.
2) Clear communication about licensing restrictions. We never displayed the copyright license of a video before. Except for a few special cases (where we made a note in the video itself), the general case was covered in the Terms of Service. That worked pretty well because most videos fell under the same license (Creative Commons Attribution/Non-Commercial/Share-Alike). That’s slowly starting to change as we get more 3rd party video content, making it more important to display license information on a per-partner basis. This information is planned to be available via the Khan Academy API as well.
It’s pretty awesome to deploy code used by millions of people. Let me know if you catch any bugs or have any suggestions.