The Common Craft Blog

This blog is where we announce new videos & talk about the power of explanation & the change it can create. 

We’ve released a new video and it’s not an explanation of hot new technology. In fact, it’s easy to assume that this subject hasn't changed in 100 years.

Our new video is about libraries, and specifically, how they have evolved in the Internet Age.
Here are the highlights as an ExplainerGIF:
Common Craft Library

About This Video:

Many of our wonderful supporters are libraries and librarians. In talking with them, we discovered that one of the biggest challenges they face is one of perception. 
To many, libraries are relics. In the age of Google, Amazon and Wikipedia it’s easy to think that libraries haven’t changed; that they are from a by-gone era. But the truth is, they have evolved and this video explains how and why. It teaches:
  • Why information is the real focus of every library
  • How the Internet has impacted libraries
  • Why more information isn’t always better
  • How libraries and librarians help us navigate information
  • What you are likely to find in libraries today

How to Use This Video

This video is designed for use by libraries, librarians and anyone who has a stake in their success. Our hope is that it can be used to introduce patrons and the public to why libraries matter more today than ever before.

Free, Shareable Version: 

We've created a free version of this video that ANYONE can use. This version of the video is Creative Commons licensed and available for embedding or downloading. 

New Video: Encryption on the Web

Posted by: leelefever on March 3, 2015- 10:36am


Topic: Common Craft Video

Categories: encryption, Explanation, internet, privacy, security, video

For our latest video, we’re going behind the scenes of the Internet and taking a look at encryption and how “keys” help keep our sensitive information secure as it travels from computer to computer. 
Here are the highlights as an ExplainerGIF:
Encryption GIF
Do you want to learn to make animated GIFs like the one above? We'll teach you.  

About This Video:

Encryption is a fundamental part of using the Internet securely, but it is mostly invisible to the user. This video explains the basic idea of encryption and specifically the two types of keys that are used online: symmetric and public. It teaches:
  • Why encryption matters on the Web
  • An example of encryption used in history
  • The basics of private key encryption
  • The basics of public key encryption
  • How public key encryption works when using a bank website

How to Use This Video

This video is designed to serve as an introduction -- it creates a solid foundation for deeper learning. Use it to kick-off a class or session on the Internet, technology, e-commerce, communications, etc.  

Recently Published Videos:


2000 Cut-Outs

Posted by: leelefever on January 5, 2015- 3:37pm


Topic: Cut-Outs

Categories: artwork, Images, pngs, vectors, visuals

2014 was a big year for our Cut-outs. The library doubled in size and Common Craft members are using the images in all kinds of projects. In fact, we recently reached a milestone. Our library now contains over 2,000 Cut-outs, all in Common Craft Style. 

Common Craft Cut-outs

Our goal is to provide a libary that gives you enough visuals for any kind of project. Whether it's a presentation, video, infographic or blog post, the Cut-outs can create a fun and engaging style.  Look for a lot more Cut-outs in 2015. 

Today we've published a new video that explains Net Neutrality. 

Note: This video release is special. For the first time in about four years, we're publishing a version of a new video on our website and YouTube so that it can be shared easily.

Why? Because it's about a complex and important subject that could impact all US internet users. This subject deserves to be understood by everyone, so we want to make that easy by making it more sharable. 

Watch the video now on YouTube or Common Craft.

Net Neutrality Common Craft

About This video:

The debate on Net Neutrality is about the future of the Internet and outcomes that could impact every US internet user. This video explains what net neutrality is and why it matters, by focusing first on the idea of neutrality.

What it teaches:

  • What neutrality means outside of the Internet 
  • Why utilities, like providers of electricity, are designed to be neutral
  • Why the internet is currently similar to a utility
  • How the internet experience could change without neutrality
Watch it on YouTube or Common Craft.
Thanks to: Jay FienbergBoris MannDarren BarefootDuncan Rawlinson and Tony Wright for reviewing and providing feedback on multiple versions of this video.