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Our Research

The InSite system is a set of best practices for getting the most out of an interview. It spans recording, transcribing, organizing and publishing, and allows audiences to efficiently navigate and share the contents.

The system came out of a quest to answer this question:

What if interviews were more accurate, transparent and useful for journalists and audiences?

Our goal: a system of best practices that

  • is idiot proof
  • is PC/Mac and Android/iPhone agnostic
  • uses as much open source software as possible
  • requires few changes from existing habits

Working backwards from what you see on the Living History site, the interactive videos are published using open source software that’s based on standards. It allows readers to navigate audio and video using the transcript of the audio/video and share quotes that include links that point directly to that quote within a video. Our Colophon page details the open source publishing software.

The system includes best practices to record, transcribe and organize interviews so the material needed for this type of publishing can be gathered and formatted efficiently. It also addresses journalists’ pain points like the distractions of recording and note taking, the tedium of transcribing, and the difficulties of navigating and sharing interview material.

The best practices are also modular, meaning if you already have a good way to record and don’t want to change it, you can plug your recording into the system at the next step – transcribing.  Or if you already have a transcribed interview you can plug that into the next step – publishing.

Here’s a schematic of our current best practices that also includes approximate costs of the parts of the system where the best practice is commercial software or hardware:

Click through the slideshow below for details, including insights from the 45 journalists we interviewed – 12 Pulitzer Prize winners among them.

For a detailed explanation of our best practices, See InSite: A Guide

Kim Patch 2017-09-21