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Blackboard Help

Add Social Media

This information applies only to the Original Course View. Your institution controls which tools are available.

What is a mashup?

Wherever you can add and format text in your course, you can add social media from other websites to your content. These social media elements that appear in a course are called "mashups." A mashup combines elements from two or more sources. For example, when you view a YouTube™ video as part of the course content, you are experiencing a mashup.

You can add mashups to test questions, discussions, assignments, or as a standalone piece of content. You can also add a clip of a movie or a photo in a journal, blog, or wiki.

Types of mashups

You and your institution control which mashup types are available in the editor. Typically, the menu includes these:

  • Flickr®: Share photographic images.
  • SlideShare: Share slide presentations, documents, or Adobe PDF portfolios.
  • YouTube: Share online videos.
  • Dropbox: Share files from your Dropbox account.

Add mashups in the editor

Wherever you want to add a social media element, access the editor. Select the Insert Mashup icon and choose the type you want to search, such as YouTube Video.

On the search page, type your keywords and select Go. You will receive a list of items that you can sort. You can also see how many items and pages are returned for your search.

When Preview is available, you can view the items in their own windows. You can also preview videos with the URLs listed in the descriptions.

After you have explored the search results, select an item. You can change the title of the item if you don't want to use the one provided.

Add mashups from the Build Content menu

In a content area, learning module, lesson plan, or folder, you can also add a social media element from the Build Content menu. When you add social media from the menu, the element appears as a standalone piece of content.

After you submit, the mashup appears in the content list. You can change the mashup's content at any time. Access the mashup's menu and select Edit.

Set mashup options

You can choose how a mashup will appear on the screen:

  • Embed: The mashup appears directly on the screen.
  • Thumbnail: A small picture of the mashup appears with a Watch function.
  • Text Link with Player: A link to the mashup appears. This option doesn't appear for photos. However, you can set a size for a photo.

Select Yes for Show URL to create a link to the website. For YouTube videos, Select No if you don't want to show suggested videos at the end of playback.

Select Yes for Show information to display the length of the mashup, name of the creator, and the date the mashup was added.

Before you submit, select Preview and view how the mashup will appear in your content. Close the preview window to make changes.

The original website can change a mashup's URL or delete it, which will cause an error in your course.

Browse My YouTube Videos

This information applies only to the Original Course View. You and your institution control if this function is available in the editor.

Wherever you can add and format text in your course, you can add one of your own YouTube videos in the editor. For example, you can share a video in a discussion thread.

When prompted, sign in to YouTube with your Google account. A new window will open. If you don't see this window, check your browser's pop-up preferences. Select Accept to allow your Blackboard server to access your YouTube videos.

If your Google account isn't enabled for YouTube access, you will receive a prompt to open a new browser tab and log in to YouTube. After you log in, create your YouTube channel to upload and store your videos. Select Grant Access.

Select Browse to search for the video you want to add. Select Insert to add the video to the editor. You have two options for how your video appears:

  • Play in place: The video plays in the current location. Viewers can resize the video. A placeholder appears in the editor where your video will play for viewers.
  • Thumbnail: A small image of the video appears.

Make your video accessible

After you upload your video to YouTube, you can add closed captions and a transcript. Captions and transcripts help people who are deaf or who experience hearing impairments understand the audio track of your video. Captions also help people who speak different languages or have learning disabilities understand what is happening in your video.

After you upload your video, it will take between an hour and a day for YouTube's transcription tool to automatically save captions from the soundtrack of your video. On the YouTube toolbar, the Captions link appears when the captions are available. After the transcription is completed, you need to edit the captions to be sure they are correct.

  1. On the YouTube toolbar, select Captions.
  2. For English, select automatic captions in the right side panel.
  3. The inline text editor opens. You can edit directly in each frame's text box. You can also download the text file, edit it on your computer with a text editor, and upload the file back to YouTube.
  4. Select Done.

Access YouTube's help and search "captions" for the most current and detailed instructions.

Privacy setting

An unlisted video doesn't appear in YouTube searches, and only users who know the link can access the video. However, complete privacy isn't guaranteed. The unlisted setting allows authors to publish and share videos easily without a need for specifically choosing who can view the video. If users have access to where the video is published, they can view it. They can also select the YouTube logo on the video which allows them to view the unlisted video on

You can change the privacy setting to Private. From the video library, edit the video to make it private in the YouTube clip edit settings. If you make a video private, only the users you specifically include, and who have a Google account can view it. Private videos appear in the library with a lock next to them. Only the author and specified viewers can view private videos.