Downloading Videos from YouTube: Can we? Should we?

By Dr. Eduardo Mayorga.

When looking for videos to train our residents, YouTube becomes a great source for them. The videos can be watched on line during a class or you can send the residents a link for them to comment on the video or part of it. On occasion and for different reasons, you may want to have the video or part of it on your hard drive so, is there an easy way to do this? Are we allowed to do it? Let’s answer each question at a time.

Is there an easy way to download videos from YouTube?: Yes, there is. YouTubeDownloader works very well and easily converts YouTube videos into several formats. As with any free software you should be aware that some of them can install spyware in your system. I have not found this to be true with YouTubeDownloader. 
Are we allowed to download videos from YouTube?: A fast and safe answer would be: No, you are not allowed…, unless you have permission of the person that created the video. Please be aware that not always the creator (the owner of the rights) is the person who uploaded the video.

There are at least 2 ways to get permission: the first and faster is to look for the type of license the owner has assigned to the video. If it’s a Creative Commons Licence, you may reuse and edit the video as far as you acknowledge the authorship to the real creator.  The other way to get permission is to write to the owner of the rights. You can read more on Creative Commons Licences clicking here

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