Video Evaluation

The videos that I focused on are: 1) Digital Humanities in Practice – Spatial Humanities & Social Justice and 2) Digital Humanities in Practice – Visualising Text. In both cases the names and qualifications of the main speakers in the videos are in the descriptions. Youtube is the source of both videos, and this is a reliable source generally unless either video is taken down – however, it won’t be up for ever and this shouldn’t be considered a permanent source. The date the videos were created don’t seem to be included anywhere – but presumably would have been created after the date in January 2015 when the Dariah Teach initiative began. The description contains the publication date with the first video being published on Nov 23, 2016 and the second published on Oct 19, 2016.

The videos were created for several audiences, students, those interested in the Digital Humanities and those interested in some of the projects. Both were created to inform and share information, as part of Dariah Teachs goals to provide open-source teaching materials. The organisation is a reasonable entity to create this video as it is dealing with specific of Digital Humanities practices and tools used in academia. The level of the audience would be at least of students and other academics, that is those who have academic interest but may not be experts in the area. Because the videos are on Youtube, the scope for other audiences to access these videos are high. The vocabulary of the narration seems to be general adequate for the intended audience. However, the second of my chosen videos uses a lot of dense jargon and technical terms – seen in other videos in the channel too. It is difficult to tell how other groups may react upon seeing this video, particularly with the first video as apartheid is still remembered by those who lived through it.
The goal of the first video is to draw attention to mapping some of the institutionalised human right violations – but also to promote this researchers project. The central theme of the first video is apartheid – and the platform which combines narratives on significant topics e.g. defensive design of Winnie Mandela’s house. But it draws attention to inequalities in everyday life, and in academia generally. The second video many topics they are linked in a manner that makes linear sense. It was probably specifically focusing on scholarly interest in Interactive Textuality: introduce this topic and elaborate on some of the general uses. A lot of information is given about specific cases, as part of a 3d recreation of historically significant locations with the aim of reconstructing Twentieth Century history as a Social Justice/history platform, combining video testimony with a 3d platform – illustrating connections between testimonials with reconstructions e.g. a protective wall built in living spaces to protect from police fire. There is an emphasis the information not previously given to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission which highlights the difficulties around telling stories in terms of legality

Authority of the Speaker
In both cases the speakers have academic expertise, quick searches of them would support their authority to speak about chosen topics. We know who the speaker is from the description at the bottom of the video. They have expertise on the topic, at least academically – and would appear to be quite knowledgeable on the subject from the information provided. Similarly, the speakers in the second video are both specialists in specifics area that they are speaking of, knowledgeable around theoretical trends in the field and its capabilities.
The first video has Angel D. Nieves, Professor of Africana Studies and Digital Humanities at Hamilton College, US. The video is about black special humanities, as a subfield of spatial humanities looking at the history of African diaspora. Here we have 2 different approaches to making videos, which may affect the reception of the message. The first video emphasises understanding “what it’s like to be African diaspora”, specifically looking at apartheid regimes and the imposition of restrictions and control on their lives – but also the resistance of those of African descent in their daily lives. The video specifically deals with the concept of restorative social justice through the telling of narratives highlighting injustices during apartheid rule. The organisation lends some credibility to the speaker in the first video, while he may not visibly be of African descent he does seem to know what he’s talking about. He thoroughly explains the field and the issues at hand, specifically social control in this case.
The second video features two speakers: Geoffrey Rockwell, Professor of Philosophy and Humanities Computing at the University of Alberta, Canada and Stéfan Sinclair, Associate Professor of Digital Humanities at McGill University. The second of my chosen videos is concerned with textual visualisation as a process. Here the speakers are concerned with visual textuality, its uses and applications. They come from specific academic field, while the speakers speak about capabilities of technology generally a lot is related to their specific fields. However, they cover multiple different topics. Videogames like Pokemon Go- which we are told is different categorically, though it is related as it is a form of visual image/information literacy

Objectivity/bias

The point of view of the speaker is clear in each video. In the first video, the relationship between the speaker and the organisation creating the video is transparent. He clearly has an agenda, to expose injustices as part of his research – but also to defend the validity of his research. The second video is more aspirational, it is regarding the capability for the application of technology. Both speakers are biased in a sense, working in the field that they defending and promoting – and speculating about the future.
One could evaluate the accuracy of the first videos content of the video by searching through the narratives around apartheid South Africa and looking for evidence of specific events, or looking for publications or review of the study when they are released. The research is for the most part original to the speaker, but also draws on previous research and witness testimonials. The second video is largely opinion, but qualified opinion on their respective fields. Though there are not sources provided, there are many general references

Production Quality
Both videos are high production quality – well-lit and framed like the other videos on Dariah Teach and you can change the quality of video on the Youtube platform and generate subtitles. The content is the ideas presented in clear audio – with clear linear narratives. Titles are used effectively, describing the topic being spoken of as it transitioned from one topic to another. The first has focus primarily on the speaker, though it is furnished with examples as he speaks, showing video narratives and computer platforms. With a variety of transitions used to illustrate what is being spoken of. There are other videos with a similar purpose to the second video, promoting the Digital Humanities and showing their application and it is similar in tone to the others on this Youtube channel. The second of my chosen videos has less additional material on top of the information given by the speakers, who are in a central position onscreen while speaking.


Works Cited

“Digital Humanities in Practice – Spatial Humanities & Social Justice” DariahTeach. Youtube. Web. Published: Nov 23, 2016 . Date Accessed: 30 Nov. 2016. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mAiyn6gMJw&index=1&list=PL77mHK9JuenOnEUrFvNzZB9qKuB3gE892
“Digital Humanities in Practice – Visualising Text” DariahTeach. Youtube. Web. Published: on Oct 19, 2016. Date accessed: 30 Nov. 2016. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uamyLcWtECg

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