Berklee College of Music's online division is taking a somewhat bold move and releasing a free BitTorrent Bundle of music lesson videos and ebooks. Given a still controversial BitTorrent brand, Berklee Online's choice to take advantage of BitTorrent tech may surprise some but seems in keeping with the online division's embrace of current options to share educational materials while marketing their online classes.
The Berklee Online Musician’s Guide was released yesterday as a BitTorrent Bundle. Such bundles have previously contained multimedia content by musicians and other artists and this seems to be the first example of such related content being distributed as a BitTorrent Bundle by an educational institution or other business.
Berklee's bundle contains 23 music lesson videos covering a range of topics including guitar and drum performance, music production, songwriting and business practices. Ebooks cover guitar, piano, music theory, songwriting, orchestration, production and business.
You can see the full list on BitTorrent's announcement post.
As with other BitTorrent Bundles, Berklee offers an immediate download (4-video sample) with the rest of the content unlocked by giving one's email address.
Berklee's Vice President for Online Learning, Debbie Cavalier, stated via a Berklee email announcement:
“Part of our goal at Berklee Online is to expand the reach of the college. We've been teaching music online for over ten years, and we've always included a free component to what we do. This includes our lesson-rich YouTube channel and Berkleeshares.com free lesson site, as well as our more recent development of MOOCs."
"The technology behind BitTorrent is impressive. It's one of the best tools out there to move data to a large community of engaged people. We're looking at this partnership with BitTorrent as an extension of our free approach, and it is one that I am very excited about."
Though some musicians still bristle at the sound of the word "BitTorrent," placing this education and marketing move in the context of other web innovations could offer Berklee Online some teachable moments if discussion arises.
More on some of Berklee's online iniatives can be found in the links below.
- Berkleemusic Joins Coursera Education Revolution With Free Online Music Classes
- Berklee College Wins Attention With Social Media
- Topspin And Berklee College Partner For Online Music Marketing Course
Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch/@crowdfundingm) also blogs at Flux Research and Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.