SoundCite if you want your readers to hear your thoughts

If you ever tried reviewing the new album of your favourite band, you know how painful it is to properly describe music. Just when you are about to give way to the wave of admiration filling your mind when listening to it for the millionth time, there comes the moment in which you should explain what is so grabbing about the music.

Worry not. Your struggles are over. SoundCite, the new tool by Knight Lab, is there to help you include in-line audio in the text so that your audience can not only read but also hear what you mean. No new tabs involved.

The simple-to-use tool takes you there in just three steps:

  • connecting to SoundCloud;
  • cropping a sound clip;
  • embedding the audio.

Easy. Most importantly though, SoundCite can come in handy not only for embedding music, but also interviews and background noise.

In-line audio has already proved interesting for big news rooms, like the New York Times. Their story reminiscing Hurricane Sandy’s impact on the American coastline embedded testimonies of witnesses, with an additional icon on the side to facilitate navigation. The hyperlink is highlighted in grey:

In-line audio, click and listen to the interview

In-line audio, click and listen to the interview

SoundCite has been presented by Miranda Mulligan, Knight Lab, during Hacks/Hackers October meet-up in London along other emerging tools like Timeline, StoryMap and twXplorer, which I will cover in the upcoming posts.

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2 thoughts on “SoundCite if you want your readers to hear your thoughts

    • I find it extremely useful to complement a story with a testimonial since it gives a personal touch to the text. I think that being able to hear the actual voice of the person quoted (as in the NYT article) makes it twice as vivid and engaging. What’s more, in-line audio makes us “receive” the article with an additional sense, which makes the experience even more comprehensive (yes, I do like podcasts and think radio shows are awfully under-appreciated nowadays!).

      As for your question: as long as you manage to upload the audio clip to SoundCloud, it will work (the embedding takes place via a SoundCloud widget). I tried to embed a short clip in my article, but – alas! – wordpress.com doesn’t take the necessary plug-ins (as opposed to wordpress.org).

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