The InSite System:
Interactive Transcripts Shareable at the Sentence Level

For the past three years I’ve been working with the folks at Duke University’s DeWitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy to make temporal media – in this case oral history interviews – easier to use.

The open source InSite publishing system we’ve built to enable Duke’s Rutherfurd Living History website connects a video to its transcript at the sentence level. The transcript and video appear on the screen at once and can be annotated with supporting content, including links, images and maps. Viewers can use the transcript to navigate and search the video. Viewers can also share any excerpt, or list of excerpts, at the sentence level.

The Our Research section of the Living History site details the publishing system and also the workflow of best practices for recording, transcribing and organizing interviews to get them ready to publish.

Here’s a brief tour starting from the David Fahrenthold interview:

Screenshot of top of David Fahrenthold interactive transcript. Video in header, transcript below. Label pointing to transcript: click anywhere on the transcript to navigate the video.
Screenshot near the middle of David Fahrenthold interactive transcript. Transcript on the left, video in the top right corner. Label pointing to sentence highlighted light blue: what's playing is highlighted blue.
Screenshot near the middle of David Fahrenthold interactive transcript. The transcript is on the left, the video on the top right. Label pointing to blue "jump to active section" button at top left: shows the transcript is ahead of where video is playing (click to jump to active section)

 

Click on the Facebook or Twitter symbols to share what you’ve highlighted plus a direct sentence-level link on social media. Or click on the link to copy the excerpt and direct link.

Screenshot near the middle of David Fahrenthold interactive transcript. Transcript on the left, video in the top right corner. One sentence is highlighted yellow. Label pointing to highlight and dialog box: highlighted quote… and a share dialog box appears.

 

And email it:

Screenshot of email that includes a quote from the interactive transcript and the direct link to that quote, which contains a number at the end. Label pointing to quote: copied quote. Label pointing to number at the end of the quote: with URL that scrubs to quote in video.

Add more quotes to make a quote playlist:

Screenshot of email containing two interactive quotes – a short quote list

 

The interactive transcripts also contain annotations that point to supporting content – the example below shows three annotations. The open one contains an external link. The viewer can open multiple annotations at once.

Screenshot of Martin Dempsey interactive transcript. The transcript is on the left, the video on the top right. There are annotations below the video. An arrow pointing to one of the annotations says "Click to toggle open/close" a second label says "Annotation types: text, image, gallery, map, file, external link, internal link"

 

Take an interactive interview for a spin yourself at livinghistory.sanford.duke.edu  – don’t forget to try sharing your favorite quotes!

Related: See Putin gets the Interactive Transcript Treatment for a brief tour of a FRONTLINE project that was based on the InSite System.