“Just watch me.” – Pierre Trudeau, October 1970
Since the CBC Digital Archives website launched in June 2002, Pierre Trudeau’s remarkable seven-minute exchange with CBC reporter Tim Ralfe at the height of the October Crisis has been a favourite among staff and visitors.
Problem was, Mac users couldn’t watch Trudeau’s riposte, or any other clip on the site, without first downloading a plug-in that would enable them to stream Windows Media clips. We heard from many Mac users seeking a way to watch what we had to offer, but we must have lost many others.
Now that problem has been solved with the relaunch of the new CBC Digital Archives website. The site has been totally redesigned and uses CBC’s in-house media player, which makes it accessible to Mac and PC users alike.
The new site is fully searchable by keyword, and visitors can browse our subject categories to find the material they’re looking for. One of our more popular features is “On This Day”, a calendar that highlights daily anniversaries of past events.
We still have over 6,500 radio and TV clips, drawn largely from CBC’s news and current affairs programming and spanning the decades since 1927 (before the CBC even existed!). Most of the clips include contextual information and link to more clips on the same topics.
Teachers will continue to find hundreds of lesson plans on a wide variety of topics. Events in Canadian history come alive for secondary school students when teachers introduce our audio and video into the classroom on topics ranging from the Cold War to Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope to – what else? – the October Crisis.
Sharing CBC’s rich archival history has become really easy, too. On each clip page is a “Share” button that will add a link to your feeds on Facebook, Twitter, Reddit or Delicious.
- Elizabeth Bridge, Producer, CBC Digital Archives