A few months ago there was an email message sent to a national list from a member of a UK University institutional Web management team who complained that “We’ve come across an outfit calling themselves Unitour who have ripped one of our marketing videos“. The message went on to add that the institution had requested that the video was removed from the site – and it seems that this has been done. The Web site in question is Unitour and they do indeed have a video tour guide of UK Universities – from which it does seem possible to opt out of.

But how should an institution go about ensuring that its marketing videos aren’t ripped off’? Well my suggestion may be regarded as rather radical in some circles – I’d suggest that you provide a Creative Commons licence for such videos and encourage people to reuse it. After all, we are talking about marketing materials. And if you are concerned that organisations may be ‘ripping off’ your bandwidth, why not make the video available from YouTube or Google Video – so that your institution doesn’t even have to provide additional bandwidth when potential students view the video.

Is this really a radical proposal, I wonder? Shouldn’t this be an approach which all universities use as part of their institutional marketing?