Friday, January 15, 2010

Voicethread Updates Jan 15th 2010

In trying to get out the information from the Voicethread e-mail today, I figured why not use this thing I once called a blog?
I'm just copying and pasting from the e-mail. Thanks Steve Muth and everyone at
Ideas and suggestions always welcome.

Hello VoiceThreaders,

We have five significant updates to share with you, advanced support for non-Latin text commentary, a tripling of the capacity of student accounts, email notifications of your VoiceThreads' activity, a new unlimited seat license and district pilot program, and the eRacism project, which is breaking new ground in global k-12 collaboration.

Advanced Language Support

We're very happy to announce that VoiceThread now supports the use of non-Latin scripts in text comments. This has been one of our most requested features for some time now, and we're excited to finally release it.

What does it mean?

It means that whenever a text comment contains a non-latin character, it no longer matters whether the person viewing the comment has the correct fonts installed. If they don't, we'll perform some technical magic in the background and make sure they see the text comment in the language that you intended, without any additional work on their part.

The beta release of this feature applies only to text comments, and if all goes well, we'll apply it to other text fields very soon. Because of the technical complexity of fonts and the way that different computers handle them, we can't give direct technical support for this feature. If you have any questions or feedback please go here.

Tripling the capacity of Student accounts

Starting today, we're increasing the capacity of student accounts on Ed.VoiceThread by more than 300%. Students will receive up to 1GB of storage and they can now create up to 50 VoiceThreads instead of the current limit of 15. The students have been very busy and we want to get out of their creative and collaborative way.

Email Notifications, aka, 'The Daily Digest'

You'll soon start to receive an email digest of all the activity on your VoiceThreads within the last day, with direct links to each and every comment made on them. So you'll no longer need to login to VoiceThread before knowing if you have new commentary to view and hear. Please let us know what you think of this new feature, we're planning updates to it and want to find out what your most important needs are.

The Unlimited Seat License for Districts

A new pilot program for first year Districts provides discounts of up to 90%, which grants an unlimited seat license for a fraction of the cost of separate school purchases.

Please contact us for written quote or to schedule a phone call/screen sharing session to answer any of your question regarding the district pilot program and the unlimited seat license.

eRacism Project

A recent project born at the Flat Classroom(tm) Conference in Doha, Qatar by a visionary group of students and organizers is an amazing example of k-12 global collaboration. 16 teams from all over the world used VoiceThread to competitively debate asynchronously the statement 'Differences make us stronger'. The engagement and energy of all the participants is clearly palpable. See and hear one of the recent debates here.

We're very proud to have helped sponsor this project and plan on continuing that support in the coming year. If you're interested in participating in the next debate series please visit

Thanks, and best wishes for the coming year,

-The VoiceThread team