By Erin Brereton,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Access tons of digital media online with your library card.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this website.
Kids can learn about reading and more. The digital media site offers movies, audiobooks, and more on a variety of subjects. Kids can, for example, learn about historical figures from biographies and news and other topics from documentaries; educational titles provide science, language, and other information for preschool- through high school-age kids. Searching for content can provide practice for future school-related research. Not all titles will help kids learn; you need to either browse educational selections or know what you're looking for, and kids can potentially stumble across some adults-only fare. However, with some guidance, Hoopla can help kids learn more about subjects they're interested in.
Selections can vary from titles on improving self-esteem to the value of positive thinking and other upbeat topics.
Violence & Scariness
Kids can potentially access horror films with an R rating -- and plentiful gore.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
The site doesn't bar documentaries and Hollywood fare that feature sex and nudity.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Albums, movies, and other items may feature words such as "f--k," "s--t," and "bitch."
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Products & Purchases
Kids won't see any ads on the site.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Kids may be able to access movies, music, and other media that touch on drug and alcohol use.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Hoopla is a digital media service that's available through local libraries to registered users who have a current library card -- kind of like a Netflix that includes books, movies, and more. Kids will need a valid email address and library card -- plus a PIN, if their libraries requires one -- to sign up for the site. (And they can't have any overdue books or fines.) Kids choose a password and use their email address to log in to Hoopla. Users will need a plug-in called Widevine to view content on their Web browser.
Videos and Photos
Based on 4 parent reviews
It use to be good
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Kid's Mode is not Kid Proof
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What’s It About?
HOOPLA is a digital media service that's available through local libraries to registered users who have a current library card. (Your library has to belong to the service for you to gain access.) Hoopla's offerings include thousands of movies, TV shows, documentaries, instructional videos, music, and audiobooks. Users can borrow up to four titles a month. You can stream movie and TV content on your mobile device or, using a plug-in, on your computer; it'll be available for 72 hours after you check it out. Music albums and audiobooks are available for 21 days.
Is It Any Good?
Kids won't find every movie under the sun on Hoopla, but they can potentially find titles that are rated R and feature nudity, bad language, or violence (so parents may want to supervise kids' time on the site). They can, however, also find educational materials to help them learn another language, find out about key historical periods, and brush up on other topics; and, even if there's a waiting list for popular new fare at their local library branch, users don't have to wait to access it online.
Hoopla charges libraries a fee each time one of its titles is accessed, according to Library Journal, but it's free for users. The system could use a more detailed search method; right now, users can locate audiobooks, movies, music, and other items by title or by scrolling through sections such as "Action & Adventure" and "Good for a Laugh." If your library doesn't use Hoopla, you're out of luck. If it does, kids should be able to easily sign up and check out several titles a month -- which, hopefully, will help supplement what they're learning in school.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can discuss how much time you should spend watching TV, even if you're viewing something educational. What limits can you set to ensure your child also is enjoying other activities?
Talk about why a site such as Hoopla -- which doesn't put users in contact with each other -- can be a better place to find information than a general search site. How can you tell if a website is a safe source of information?
On sites where you can enter your name and other personal information, what kinds of things should you never share?
- Subjects: Language & Reading: reading, storytelling, Arts: film, music
- Skills: Self-Direction: academic development, personal growth, Tech Skills: evaluating media messages
- Genre: Video Sites
- Pricing structure: Free
- Last updated: November 5, 2015
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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