More Than Cat Videos: 6 YouTube Channels to Feed Your Brain

YouTube. The brand conjures images of cat videos and middle-aged men being pelted in the nether regions, but Google is making a push to transform the web video behemoth into a formidable — and respectable — video content delivery system.

Google is betting big on Youtube, having dropped huge amounts of cash into a push for exclusive and original content- and brands have taken notice.

The success of original programming remains to be seen, but the shift has already had a profound impact on the quality of content on the site. Here are six channels well worth a click on that 'subscribe' button.

Big Think

BigThink is "a knowledge forum featuring the ideas, lessons, stories and advice of leading experts from around the world."

Al Jazeera

This channel is a live stream of the Al Jazeera English television news channel, one of the most respected news organizations in the world.

Fora TV

Fora bills itself as "the conference channel. is the leading online provider of video programs from conferences, summits, public forums, university debates and think tanks. helps intelligent, engaged audiences get smart."

Reserve Channel

The Reserve Channel is a relative newcomer to the video content game, but has come on very strong of late, and features excellent original programming.

"Reserve Channel provides once-in-a-lifetime access to some of the more extraordinary people and places life has to offer. Whether it's traveling to exotic locales, getting inside the studio with iconic artists, or cooking alongside culinary legends, Reserve Channel has you on the list. This is where the content appetite of the cultural creatives is satisfied."

Open Yale Courses

Open Yale courses brings takes you into the Yale classroom by making its open coursework directly available on its channel.

"Yale's philosophy of teaching and learning begins with the aim of training a broadly based, highly disciplined intellect without specifying in advance how that intellect will be used. The Yale Courses channel provides entry into the core of the University--its classrooms and academic programs--including complete sets of lectures from the Open Yale Courses initiative."


If you spend any amount of watch timing TED talks, you're probably familiar with The RSA, who occasionally brillaintly animate a poignant TED talk (like 'The Power of Outrospection'. The YouTube channel provides the same quality in "meeting 21st century challenges by showcasing ideas, undertaking innovative research and building civic capacity around the world."

Bonus: Did you know you can also subscribe to topics on YouTube, like creativity or Sir Ken Robinson?

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