An Oral History of the Crime Victim Assistance Field
Video and Audio Archive

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How do I view an interview?
Left click on View Complete Interview Video or Hear Complete Interview Audio next to the interview you wish to see or hear from this list of interviewees. Also, left clicking on any text in an interview's transcript starts the media player at the point in the interview tagged by the nearest preceeding small clock image. All of the text in each interview transcript is a set of browser links configured without the usual underlining that would, in this case, be distracting.

Why does the media player not start consistently at the same place relative to the tagged starting timecode?
The timecodes set in the original transcripts vary by up to five seconds relative to the tagged point in the interview, though most are within a second of the tagged point. Hence, you may occassionally see the video, or hear the audio, start a few seconds ahead of, or after, the expected starting point. It generally takes a second or so for the average person to register the flow of the interview; therefore, both the audio and video playback aim to start approximately one second ahead of the tagged starting point.

Why do some videos sparkle in odd places?
To insure the historical integrity and accuracy of the archive, all video and audio files are integrated into the collection in their original un-retouched formats. As a result, some clips contain slight recording errors that appear as audio and video "noise." In audio clips, this noise may take the form of an audible "hiss" or occasional "crackle" in the audio track. Video noise appears as sparkles of color that appear periodically on screen when viewing the video. Both of these phenomena are temporary in nature and in most cases will quickly dissipate within a few seconds.

How do I search for a word or phrase in a transcript?
Most browsers support searching for text by clicking on Edit then Find on This Page ... Or by pressing the Control-F key combination. A popup window or text search line will appear. Enter the text you want to search for and press Enter|Return. Then, press the F3 key or click on Find Next to go to the next occurrence of the text search.

If you searched for some words among all of the interviews and are now looking for that phrase in one of the interviews, note that the search engine for all of the interviews does not require the individual words in the word phrase to be adjacent in the interview. For example, searching all interviews for "new directions" returns several interviews that include those words in them. Most of the interviews noted as having those words do have the words "new directions" adjacent to one another, and in that sequence; however, some of the interviews found have the word "new" in one place and "directions" in another.

Why are the small clock images in the interview transcripts?
The small clock images are inserted wherever a timecode was found in the transcript. Clicking on a small clock image pops up a small window that notes the timecode for the edited interview, the timecode in the original transcript, interview segment number, and a comment. This information is provided for researchers who need to work with copies of the original tapes.

Why doesn't the "Back Button" work?
Although this application uses a browser to navigate around you are not viewing a simple traditional Web site. While it has a similar look and feel to a Web site that you can navigate in your browser with the Back Button, using the Back Button will often not go where you thought it would. Please use the navigation controls built into the application.

Why does the browser layout look strange?
The browser page was designed for 1024 by 768 resolution or better on a Windows system. A screen with a lower resolution, such as 800 by 600, will squash the layout. On OS X, you can extend the browser to the full width of the screen by first maximizing its window and then grabbing the lower right corner and dragging it to the right edge of the screen.

The Web pages are tuned for Firefox because Firefox can simultaneously play an interview and display its transcript, which the other browsers are unable to do. The Web pages have been tested with Internet Explorer and Safari and display reasonably well in those browsers. Other browsers may not accurately render the Web pages.

Is there a limitation to the number of users who can view video files on the website at one time?
Yes. Due to the inherent limitation of available bandwidth of the University's Internet connection, the number of simultaneous users who can access the site's streaming video is limited - though access to all other pages on the site is virtually unlimited. Those attempting to access video files beyond the bandwidth capacity will receive an access failure message. Users receiving such a message are simply encouraged to try again at a later time.