Internet Archive Launches TV News Search With Content Back to 2009
The Internet Archive has launched a new searchable "lending library" of major television news broadcasts back to 2009. TV News Search & Borrow allows users to search the closed caption transcripts of these broadcasts to retrieve relevant news reports. One drawback to this strategy is that these transcripts are notoriously rife with spelling errors and "phonetic spellings" as the captioners are working in real time to type (much) of the audio that they're hearing in a live newscast.
At launch, the collection contained 355,000 TV news broadcasts from 20 national U.S. networks and stations in San Francisco and Washington D.C. According to information provided by the Internet Archive, the collection "is updated with new broadcasts 24 hours after they are aired. Older materials are also being added." The homepage also features a word cloud of popular news topics. clicking any of the topics in the word cloud retrieves the search results page for that topic.
Searching the collection retrieves short streaming clips that can be viewed in your browser. Programs can be borrowed on DVD-ROM or viewed at the Internet Archive’s library in San Francisco. Loan fees for DVDs begin at $50 and include shipping charges.
Some of the buttons in the viewing interface can be a bit misleading. For example, the Whole Program button leads to a collection of short clips that comprise the whole show rather than a contiguous video of the whole show. The Share Clip button brings up the URL to the clip you're viewing which can be pasted into an e-mail or web page rather than providing a "sharing box" to post the video directly to your favorite social network.
TV Search and Borrow was inspired by Vanderbilt University’s Television News Archive project that contains copies of network TV news broadcasts back to 1968 (that we first wrote about back in 2001). That archive now boasts more than one million records.
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