Creative Commons, U.S. Department of Education, and Open Society Foundations present

Why Open Education Matters

Create a short video that explains the benefits and promise of Open Educational Resources for teachers, students and schools everywhere.

Participation in the competition constitutes your full and unconditional agreement to and acceptance of the Official Rules, so it is important that you read and understand them prior to participating in the competition.

Q: What is the purpose of this competition?

A: Open Educational Resources have been available online for the more than a decade and there's enormous potential for OER to aid teachers, students, and schools. The problem is that few people around the world have ever heard of Open Educational Resources. We want you to tell that story to the world by creating and sharing short videos.

Q: How do I enter the Why Open Education Matters Video Competition?

A: You may submit your video entry via the competition website form. You need to provide the URL of your video as well as contact information. Entrants must agree to the official rules when submitting their video. When submitting a video, you get an account on the website. You may use this account to log in to vote for the Public Choice Award.

Q: Who's eligible to enter?

A: You must be at least 13 years old to enter. Nonprofits, schools, and companies may also enter a video.

Q: Can persons who are not U.S. citizens enter the competition?

A: Yes, submissions can come non-U.S. citizens and from organizations outside of the United States, provided you comply with the requirements laid out in the Official Rules.

Q: When are videos due?

A: Videos must be submitted by June 5, 2012.

Q: How long should my video be?

A: Videos should be no more than 3 minutes long.

Q: Can we work in teams?

A: Yes. But, if you work in a team, each team member must fill out and submit the Team Member Release Form at the time of submitting the video. Team Member Release forms should be emailed to tvol [at]

Q: Who will judge the videos?

A: A panel of judges will award the first and second place prizes. The public will choose the Public Choice Award by voting for their favorite video on the Why Open Education Matters website. Judging and public voting will take place from June 11 - July 11, 2012. See the Judging page for more information.

Q: How will the videos be judged?

A: To award the first and second place prizes, submissions will be judged on a 100-point scale according to the following criteria:

Q: What are the prizes?

A: The first prize is $25,000. The second prize is $5,000. The Public Choice Award is $1,000. The prize money is graciously provided by the Open Society Institute.

Q: When will I know if I win?

A: Winners will be publicly announced July 18, 2012. If you are a winner the competition organizers will contact you on or after July 5, 2012 to confirm your prize. You must respond within three days of being notified you are a winner or you will not be eligible to receive your prize.

Q: Who’s putting on this competition?

A: The Why Open Education Matters video competition is being organized by Creative Commons, the U.S. Department of Education, and the Open Society Institute. The Participatory Culture Foundation designed the competition website on the Miro Community platform.

Q: What are Open Educational Resources?

A: Information about Open Educational Resources and other FAQs are available on the FAQ page.

Q: Does it matter how my video is licensed?

A: All submissions to the Why Open Education Matters Video Competition must be licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. See for more information.

Q: Where should I host my competition video?

A: You can use any video hosting platform (such as YouTube, Vimeo,, etc.) as long as those platforms allow you to license the video under CC BY. Alternatively, you can host the video on your own website as long as the video is licensed CC BY.

Q: Can I include content created by third parties in my video?

A: Yes, as long as you are authorized to include it, either because you have permission or it is in the public domain. Note that you should not include content if you are relying on fair use or any other exception or limitation to copyright law. It is very important that you understand your legal obligations when incorporating third party content. Before creating and submitting your video, read the FAQ for more information.