About us

Kanopy was founded in 2007 with a single-minded idea: to change the way students learn through the power of film, while generating a sustainable economy for filmmakers.

To fully understand the mission that drives us, it's important to understand the two problems that used to define our market:

  • Problem 1: Higher education students watched more video outside their college worlds than any other resource, yet video was strangely absent as an academic resource. Put simply, although educational video was available on campus, no one was watching.
  • Problem 2: Filmmakers had no control or visibility in the educational video distribution market and there was an overwhelming sense of distrust in video distributors and a sense the market was not really viable.

The Kanopy Story

Our starting point is that we commit to offering filmmakers the majority share of every sale we make. We even go a step further and give each and every filmmaker a live dashboard so for the first time, they can have unique insights into their audience viewing behavior. We encourage filmmakers to open a dialogue with their audience direct. In doing so, we have been able to restore faith and trust in filmmakers through transparency and solid returns. That's why we're so proud of our video collection which attracts tens of thousands of leading productions - from documentary to fictional, independent to studio.

Our business model is simple - any university or college library can purchase a 1 or 3 year license to any film on Kanopy which is made available on their Kanopy video platform. Institutions are only charged when the films are viewed enough times to generate ROI for the library. ie The library only pays for videos that are actually used.

So how does all this address our lofty ideal of changing the way students learn through the power of film?
Easy. We believe film is one of the most powerful and engaging resources of our time. The Kanopy platform is designed to engage and share. Students from all over the world can watch films, share, comment, create clips and playlists, ask filmmaker questions...you name it. The students love it. They love it so much they bring Kanopy clips to class and then we get amazing feedback from professors like "I've been teaching film for 25 years and now students come to class armed with their Kanopy playlists. I've never felt so connected to my students than ever before."

Kanopy is now streaming to nearly 2000 institutions worldwide and continues to grow at a rapid rate. Millions of students are watching and learning from Kanopy videos and you know what makes us feel so good? They're not watching the latest episode of "Bachelor" (well, ok, maybe some are on other platforms) but they are watching videos on issues that matter. On gender, on race, on the environment. Videos that are challenging the way they think and introducing new ideas that are then shared and debated.

Ultimately we're playing a small but important role in growing and changing the world our audience lives in.

To learn more about Kanopy, please contact us!