I sent an announcement about Microsoft’s decision to terminate Flip to alumni of the Humanizing Online STEM Academy alumni. I thought it may be helpful to more people, as well, so I am sharing it below. I should note, this is a message that was developed for users of Canvas. (Other LMSs also have support for video commenting.)

Hi there. With all the changes upon us in recent years, it’s difficult for me to deliver news about one more. As you may have heard, Microsoft recently announced that it is sunsetting its popular asynchronous video discussion tool, Flip. Flip, of course, has played a central role in the Humanizing Online STEM Academy and has found a home in many of your classes. For those who have continued to use Flip after the Academy, we want to recognize the frustration and other emotions that you are likely feeling in response to this news. We feel them too and wish we could do more to help.

Since hearing this news, our project team has met multiple times to develop suggestions for replacement options. We’re sharing the following suggestions based on accessibility (including both captioning and support for mobile devices) and cost.

  • Canvas Discussions with video replies. When replying to a Canvas discussion, a student can select the Record/Upload option in the Rich Content Editor (RCE) toolbar and record a video on a computer using a webcam or on a phone in the Canvas Student app (however, the phone option works best when the video is first recorded on the phone then uploaded). After some processing time, auto captions now appear on these videos (hooray!).

    We shared a Canvas Discussion template in the Canvas Commons with instructions for replying in video. If you’d like to view/import the template into your own class, go to Commons, search for #HumanizingSTEM, and select Meet n’ Greet (Canvas Video Discussion!). 

  • Canvas Studio. If your institution has a license for Canvas Studio, this is an option to consider. However, be aware that the Studio interface for students who are on a phone is tricky, particularly the process to publish captions. Our fabulous Humanizing STEM instructional designer, Ali Olson-Pacheco, is doing a phenomenal job of advocating for improvements to the Studio interface on mobile. As a result, we are hopeful that the Studio interface will become more user-friendly for our mobile-dependent learners soon. Thank you for your leadership, Ali!

  • VoiceThread. If your campus has a license for VoiceThread, it is a wonderful option that also opens many additional opportunities for other creative assessment approaches using video and other forms of media too.

  • Padlet. Padlet is an external tool that supports video comments and now includes auto captioning. Padlet is free until a user creates three Padlets and then they’re prompted to upgrade. Accounts are on the more affordable end and, from what I’ve heard, the site license fees are reasonable (sorry, I don’t more details!). Sidenote: Padlet also has a new Sandbox product out in beta, which is being touted as a replacement for Google Jamboard – which may be a factor that influences some of you. Learn more about Sandbox in this helpful LinkedIn post by Tolu Noah.

Finally, here are a couple of important dates about Flip you should be aware of. For more information, please view the official statement from Microsoft.

  • Starting July 1, 2024 Flip was removed from mobile app stores and the Flip interface became view only, meaning you can no longer create new groups, topics, or videos. In short, it will not be usable for classes this fall.
  • You may access your Flip account and download existing videos until September 30, 2024.

If you have any questions or other suggestions, please free to reach out and I’ll do my best to help.



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