SoundCite gives voice to WaPo's account of Wendy Davis' filibuster

Knight Lab couldn’t have been more excited to learn that The Washington Post used our newly launched project, SoundCite, to tell the story of the Wendy Davis ‘tweetstorm’ following her filibuster in Texas.

There's just something about launching a project and seeing it used to help tell stories. It's like sending a child off into the world and watching her succeed.

SoundCite co-creator and Knight Lab student fellow, Tyler Fisher, said it best:



To which the article’s author, Caitlin Dewey, replied:


Music to our ears.

SoundCite received more Twitter love and some great descriptions of what this tool can add to the reading experience:


 


 

The Post's story wasn't the first time we've seen SoundCite by a publication. It was first adopted in late May by Chicago's own WBEZ for a story on Chance the Rapper. That use highlighted SoundCite's ability to enrich music-related articles by providing inline playback of clips from Chance the Rapper's songs while reading the lyrics.

The Post's story, on the other hand, shows how journalists can give voice and personality to the quotes within their stories and use ambient sound to transport the reader onto the scene. In the case of Wendy Davis' filibuster this became a powerful way to convey the emotions involved over her 13-hour stand, and gave readers a stronger connection to the story and the cause.

While music reviews were the original inspiration for SoundCite, we had been hoping publishers would use it like the Post did here in telling the Wendy Davis' tweetstorm story. Other use-cases we imagine would be for storytellers to use it as as an effective way to give readers access to clips of 911 calls, speeches, or even ambient sound. The only requirement is that the audio be hosted on SoundCloud. Unfortunately, because of SoundCloud's embed technology, it doesn't yet work on iPhones and other iOS-enabled devices. We've done our best to smooth out that experience by allowing the text to appear and the reader will not even be aware of the missing clip.

About the author

Jordan Young

Operations and Project Manager, 2011-2015

Latest Posts

  • Introducing StorylineJS

    Today we're excited to release a new tool for storytellers.

    StorylineJS makes it easy to tell the story behind a dataset, without the need for programming or data visualization expertise. Just upload your data to Google Sheets, add two columns, and fill in the story on the rows you want to highlight. Set a few configuration options and you have an annotated chart, ready to embed on your website. (And did we mention, it looks great on phones?) As with all of our tools, simplicity...

    Continue Reading

  • Join us in October: NU hosts the Computation + Journalism 2017 symposium

    An exciting lineup of researchers, technologists and journalists will convene in October for Computation + Journalism Symposium 2017 at Northwestern University. Register now and book your hotel rooms for the event, which will take place on Friday, Oct. 13, and Saturday, Oct. 14 in Evanston, IL. Hotel room blocks near campus are filling up fast! Speakers will include: Ashwin Ram, who heads research and development for Amazon’s Alexa artificial intelligence (AI) agent, which powers the...

    Continue Reading

  • Bringing Historical Data to Census Reporter

    A Visualization and Research Review

    An Introduction Since Census Reporter’s launch in 2014, one of our most requested features has been the option to see historic census data. Journalists of all backgrounds have asked for a simplified way to get the long-term values they need from Census Reporter, whether it’s through our data section or directly from individual profile pages. Over the past few months I’ve been working to make that a reality. With invaluable feedback from many of you,......

    Continue Reading

  • How We Brought A Chatbot To Life

    Best Practice Guide

    A chatbot creates a unique user experience with many benefits. It gives the audience an opportunity to ask questions and get to know more about your organization. It allows you to collect valuable information from the audience. It can increase interaction time on your site. Bot prototype In the spring of 2017, our Knight Lab team examined the conversational user interface of Public Good Software’s chatbot, which is a chat-widget embedded within media partner sites.......

    Continue Reading

  • Stitching 360° Video

    For the time-being, footage filmed on most 360° cameras cannot be directly edited and uploaded for viewing immediately after capture. Different cameras have different methods of outputting footage, but usually each camera lens corresponds to a separate video file. These video files must be combined using “video stitching” software on a computer or phone before the video becomes one connected, viewable video. Garmin and other companies have recently demonstrated interest in creating cameras that stitch......

    Continue Reading

  • Publishing your 360° content

    Publishing can be confusing for aspiring 360° video storytellers. The lack of public information on platform viewership makes it nearly impossible to know where you can best reach your intended viewers, or even how much time and effort to devote to the creation of VR content. Numbers are hard to come by, but were more available in the beginning of 2016. At the time, most viewers encountered 360° video on Facebook. In February 2016, Facebook......

    Continue Reading

Storytelling Tools

We build easy-to-use tools that can help you tell better stories.

View More