San Francisco based Internet Archive, one of the world’s largest public digital libraries, will expand its research library to make readily available hundreds of thousands of U.S. television news programs, with $1 million in support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.
With this funding, the archive will expand its TV News Search & Borrow service, which now includes 400,000 broadcasts dating back to June 2009. The aim is to help strengthen the work of journalists, scholars, teachers, librarians, civic organizations and others.
The service uses closed captioning to allow users to search, quote and borrow U.S. TV news programs. Available at no charge, the public can use the index of searchable text and short-streamed clips to explore TV news. In this way, they can discover important resources, better understand context, verify facts and share insights. The research service does not facilitate downloading, but individuals have the opportunity view whole programs at the Internet Archive’s library in San Francisco or borrow them on DVD-ROMs.
“We are beginning to see important public benefits arising from this new capability to apply digital search and analysis to news from our most pervasive and persuasive medium— television,” said Roger Macdonald, Internet Archive television news project director. “Documentarians are finding key news footage to license. Educators are showing their students how news stories are told and audiences are engaged. Researchers are using it to identify important trends across the media landscape.”