Privacy and video-based learning
If you already run an online course or are planning on doing so, one of the biggest hurdles you will face is where to host your content.
As you are no doubt aware, there are many options for hosting video content online. YouTube is by far the most popular and Vimeo arguably comes in a (not particularly close) second. The real concern here though is privacy and how you can prevent people from easily downloading your content.
So, if you’re building your own online course, or you want to start teaching online, what is the best solution to display your videos or audio files?
We believe that Presto Player is the most complete, most secure, and most cost-effective solution on the market today, and we’re going to explain why as you read on.
The video hosting dilemma
Before we go any further, we’ll quickly address what video hosting actually means and why it is so important when it comes to offering an online course.
Video hosting is the idea of uploading your video content to a service that allows you to distribute the content easily to wherever your audience is.
As we mentioned earlier, YouTube is the perfect example of a video hosting platform, because you upload your video from a single location and it is almost instantly available from anywhere in the world.
Your video is uploaded and then hosted on their dedicated video server, and there are multiple servers positioned in different geographical locations to reach every user on the planet. The video hosting platform takes care of video playback and streaming while ensuring the highest-quality viewing experience possible for its customers.
Privacy is a major concern for all online teachers and instructors because your students are paying for access to the content.
It is extremely easy to download video content from YouTube—check for yourself by searching “download YouTube video” in Google—and this makes it completely unsuitable for any paid learning content.
YouTube also removed the option for uploading paid video content in 2018.
Vimeo offers far better protection for your content, but it can be an expensive platform that has historically been pitched to production companies who want to share premium content, that is secure, and viewed in the highest possible quality.
For these reasons, as an online course provider, you want to use a platform that offers all of the practicality and hosting quality of YouTube, but with paid protection for your content.
As an online course provider, you need to manage two main aspects of your content. This is video/audio hosting AND management of subscriptions, both of which work together to ensure the security of your content and the accessibility of it to any user regardless of their location.
But this powerful plugin alone can’t do everything. This is why it has been designed to integrate perfectly with hosting and course management systems.
LMS and video hosting
Let’s begin with the term LMS. This stands for a Learning Management System, and it is the system that will manage subscriptions to your paid course content in addition to a large number of other features that improve the student experience.
How LearnDash works
LearnDash is one of the most popular LMS platforms on the market today. We make it available as part of our EZWP packages as an optional upgrade, so we are going to stick with it as a reference, but there are many others available.
The LearnDash platform is a plugin that sits on top of your WordPress website. This means that all functionality is housed within your WP dashboard, and the layout is very easy to understand making managing your content a lot simpler.
Your students will access all of the course content via your website using their individual login which is managed by LearnDash, as is their entire subscription.
The next part is understanding where your video content is actually hosted. While it is accessible through your website, it is not hosted there.
We would never recommend hosting video content on your website—with only a few exceptions—mainly because the large file sizes will negatively impact your website performance, plus the potential for access and security issues would make for a terrible user experience.
Hosting on Bunny.net
Fortunately, there are some very affordable options for hosting your video content, and our personal favorite for cost, performance, and hosting power for worldwide access is Bunny.net.
Bunny.net allows you to host your video content across multiple servers that are distributed in different locations worldwide to ensure that your content is reachable wherever your students are. Plus, because your course video content is paid for, you can easily choose for your uploaded video to be private.
Presto Player joins the dots
You’re probably thinking that connecting three platforms would be complicated, but it isn’t!
When adding any video to LearnDash, you need to add a key that connects Bunny.net with your website, and this is done within your account page because Presto Player links them together.
You can add your video easily to the lesson on LearnDash using one of several Gutenberg (the WordPress block-based editor) blocks that are provided by Presto Player. You then need to select the video you want and then the page will automatically refresh showing you your selected video in the block!
See how easy it is….
The final touch is to customize the appearance of your video using Presto Player using one of the templates provided.
Elevate your course content with Presto Player
Uploading video content for your online course has always been a complicated process, often with plugins not communicating well with each other or problems adding the video to your website.
The main reason why we are so excited about Presto Player is that it has finally addressed these problems for online teachers making the process so much easier – like it should have always been!
And the final advantage is that it is able to offer all of these benefits while still being a very affordable package which opens up the possibility of teaching online to an even wider audience.