Audio Archives


Person Describing Archive

Celyn Harding Jones , Jared Wiercinski (2010); Chelsea Obodoechina (2020)

Is this primarily a poetry audio site?

N (Video)

Sponsoring Person or Institution

YouTube, along with many corporate partners who become content providers. In 2005 (inception of site) Sequoia Capital funded the initial site. In 2006, Google purchased the company.

Site URL

Site Last Updated
Date Visited


General Description of Archive

YouTube is the world's most popular online video "community", where users upload videos. Anyone can upload a video, and YouTube provides the website and organizing system for others to view videos for free.

Description of archive history or URL

Founded in February of 2005, YouTube allowed users to upload their own content. The company and site was bought by Google in 2006. The site continues to be updated with new interactivity and sharing technologies, as well as updating itself to new viewing technologies such as the ipad, cellphones, etc.

Contact information

901 Cherry Ave. San Bruno, CA 94066. Phone: +1 650-253-0000

Searchable options

The search bar at the top of the screen is a keyword search. Anything that shows up in the title, the user name, or the description will appear in this search. There are also lists of related searches. Advanced search includes: Result type: All, Videos, Channels, Playlists/ Sort by: Relevance, Upload date, View Count, Rating/ Upload date: Anytime, Today, This week, This month/ Category: All, (the rest are related to the search term, My search was "Cat", so categories are Pets and Animals, Comedy.) /Duration: All, Short, Long/ and Features: All, closed captions, HD, Partner videos, Rental, WebM. Then, two search lists are generated. One is from the search options you've chosen, the other on the right side bar is Featured Videos.

Relation from the audio to the text

Google has been experimenting with automated transcriptions (described here: There is also a description posted by the uploading user, where they are allowed to add tags. In addition, users can also supply human-generated transcriptions as described here (

Date/Time/Length/Context info about the audio items

Date POSTED, and time of the video are available. Context and info are only given if the uploader provides them.

Author bios and context within literary history

not applicable, however, users sometimes have their own YouTube channels, where information about their online activity is displayed-- a new digital context.

Audio file type: streaming, download, file format, audio file compression quality (WAV, MP3, bitrate)

YouTube supports most video formats. Media files are not available for download.

Multimedia integration (pictures, video, etc.)

Videos are key on this site, and stills from the video serves as an image.

Audio playback setup (opens in Flash player, on new blank screen, etc.)

The videos play on the same page, however you can click on a full screen option. You can also choose the quality you want to view the video in.

Mobile access (i.e. accessible on smart phones, tablets, etc.)

YouTube offers a mobile version of their site ( Also, many mobile devices offer YouTube apps.


Browsing is unlimited on this site, as there are always 'related' videos posted on the right side of the screen.

Discovery features (pre-made playlists; dynamic lists: lists of recent additions, featured items, related items, etc).
Interactivity and Web 2.0 features

Interactivity is also high on this site, as you can comment, Share via social networks, email, embed, create your own channels, playlists, favourites. YouTube is also accessible on your cell phone, on T.V., and embedded in websites. There's also TestTube, which lets users test out new ideas that YouTube is working on: Video editors, Comment search, Caption editors, YouTube on HTML5.

Other notes