Article types | What is a video article? | File exchange | Authorship, copyright, and fair use | Language style | Transcripts and access | Ethical Matters | Indicative links
Journal of Embodied Research submission guidelines
Journal of Embodied Research solicits video articles of between 10 and 20 minutes that document and share the results of research projects in which embodied practice is an essential part of the methodology. Submissions to JER should be made electronically through this website.
Recognizing that the scholarly video article is a new medium for sharing research, the following guidelines and suggestions are offered to contributors. Please read these guidelines carefully and contact the journal editor with further questions. A downloadable version is available here.
Types of Contribution
- Research Articles document the outcomes of original embodied research. These should make a substantial and clearly articulated contribution to knowledge and understanding in an specified area of embodied practice. They can combine video and audio recordings, still images, graphics and animation, voiceovers, textual material and other multimedia forms. Research articles should be no more than 20:00 in duration.
- Video Editions make historical audiovisual materials available in a stable version of record that can be used as a reference point for future citation. Contributors who own the copyright to such materials or who wish to produce a scholarly edition of materials in the public domain should send a proposal to the journal editor for consideration. There is no maximum duration for items in this category although longer videos may take more time to publish.
- Other video materials that do not fall within the previous categories can be published through JER’s associated Open Channel’. Items published via the Open Channel are curated by a team of editors and do not go through formal peer review. There is no minimum or maximum duration for items in this category and experimentation with form is encouraged.
What is a video article?
- The scholarly video article is a new medium for which detailed style guidelines have yet to be developed. Contributors are advised to consider relevant precedents (see links below) while making their own creative and informed design choices. As with a traditional journal article, form and content should be integrated to articulate a substantive critical position.
- All video articlesmust include the following minimal elements:
Most articles will require more than these minimal elements to adequately frame audiovisual materials and explicate their noteworthy aspects. However, it is possible that audiovisual recordings of embodied practice could be sufficient without additional framing, if the practice itself is very clearly structured and has a sufficiently narrow focus.
- A clearly identified title that to distinguish the article within the journal;
- A clearly identified author or list of authors; and
- Continuous time code to allow for stable and accurate citation.
- Incidental media, such as a recorded soundtrack that does not come from the documented embodied practice, is discouraged. JER emphasizes the difference between scholarly video articles and promotional videos such as ‘trailers’, which often use rapid editing and musical soundtracks to create an effect of intensity. In contrast, a video research article should strive for relative transparency with regard to the documented practices and knowledge.
- Each video article should have a clear multimedia design that is appropriate to its content. Use of specialized annotation tools such as ELAN, TKB Creation Tool, or PieceMaker (MotionBank), as well as graphics and animations that can be created in video editing programs like FinalCut Pro and Adobe Premiere, are welcome but not required. JER recognizes that such additions can effectively add ‘density’ to a video, allowing richer access to embodied knowledge and practice, but can also be distracting or confusing if overused. Older and simpler forms of annotation such as voiceovers and subtitles are also welcome.
- Visual design choices apart from the above are left open to the contributors.
- Video files should initially be submitted as web links to streaming videos hosted on a site such as Vimeo or YouTube. This file should be password protected during the review phase to maintain privacy and to avoid making multiple versions publicly available. Based on peer review comments, contributors may need to send multiple versions of the article.
- Final versions of accepted articles should be sent directly to the editor as an HD quality (1920x1080) MP4 file via a file sharing service like WeTransfer or Dropbox. The JER intro animation will be appended to the video, including volume/issue number and year.
- Correspondence regarding submitted video articles should be conducted through this website to ensure that the peer review process is appropriately tracked. Associated files (see below) can also be sent via this website.
- Proofreading is the responsibility of the contributor(s). At this time it is not feasible to transfer the video editing file and its associated resources to the editorial team. Therefore, editors and peer reviewers will only have access to uneditable video files. This means that only the authors can make direct changes. Proofread all embedded textual materials carefully!
Authorship, copyright, and fair use
- The default position of JER is that individuals whose practices are published in a JER video article are full co-authors. In the case of performance documentation, a dancer or actor whose practice is shared through the video article would be listed as an author rather than subject. In the case of visual anthropology, a co-researcher or informant whose practice is documented would likewise be listed as an author. Practitioners who appear incidentally or in large groups, or as part of excerpted previously published footage, should not be listed as authors. Groups, ensembles, and student cohorts can be named using appropriate terms. JER encourages submissions from hybrid pairs or teams that combine academics and embodied practitioners as well as from individual artist-scholars and practitioner-researchers. Questions regarding authorship should be addressed to the journal editor.
- The default license for all articles published by JER is Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0). This ensures the widest possible distribution for the material while requiring that authors receive proper accreditation for their work. Copyright remains with the author(s) and the video article can be freely published elsewhere. Contributors who have questions regarding CC licensing or who wish to use a different license should discuss this with the journal editor as early as possible in the review process.
- Fair Dealing (UK/Canada) and Fair Use (US) are legal exceptions to copyright law which allow for the publication of limited excerpts of copyrighted materials for research purposes and/or when they are used in a transformative way. JER supports the strengthening of the public domain and will publish articles that include small excerpts of audio, video, or graphic material under copyright, as long as this publication is unlikely to impinge upon the commercial interests of the copyright owner. (This policy is identical to the one commonly applied to textual quotations.) Where such materials potentially conflict with the cultural rights of indigenous or other communities, this should be discussed with the journal editor as early as possible in the review process.
- English is the default language for commentary, written texts, and voiceovers in JER articles, but contributor(s) are encouraged to produce versions of their article in other languages wherever possible. Because many video articles may include a small amount of text, the task of translation into other languages may be relatively easy. Closed captions, abstracts, and transcripts can also be provided in multiple languages.
- Written text should be embedded in the video file as part of an overall multimedia design that integrates video, sound, image, and other content. JER suggests using written text only where necessary and avoiding long paragraphs or numerous fast-moving subtitles as this can be difficult to follow or distracting for the viewer. However, as this is a new medium, such decisions will be left to the contributor(s) as much as possible. Choices in size, typeface, and placement should be consistent and should reflect a coherent multimedia design.
- References and citations must be included within the video article as well as in the required accompanying document described below. The Harvard system of referencing should be used and a complete bibliography should appear at the end of the video. Additionally, authors can choose to make reference to that list using author/date citations or to include ‘footnotes’ with citation information throughout the video.
Transcripts and access
- All final videos must be accompanied by a document including the following:
- Title and author information;
- A descriptive abstract (300-500 words);
- Up to eight keywords identifying the main themes and topics of the article; and
- A bibliography of all sources cited in the video.
The following elements are strongly encouraged in this document, but not required:
- Transcript of all spoken and written text in the video;
- Transcript of charts, graphs, or other materials from the video; and
- Detailed description of what is shown in the video.
The production of transcripts is the responsibility of the contributor(s). JER recognizes that this may be a considerable amount of additional work. However a transcript is essential in order to make the content of video articles accessible to text-based search engines. It is in the best interest of contributors to provide this information, which will be included alongside the video files on the JER website.Providing additional access methods for video articles is strongly encouraged. It is in the interest of contributors to provide multiple access methods in order for their work to reach the widest possible audience across various kinds of sensory and cognitive difference including visual and hearing impairment. Simple, low-tech methods for creating Closed Captions are available through hosting sites like Vimeo and YouTube. Audio description is also encouraged both as an access method for sight-impaired auditors and as a methodological tool for engaging with visual imagery.Apart from the above, the accompanying document should not include additional substantive materials that are not in the video article itself. The video article must stand alone as a research document without the support of additional writing.
Where applicable, research must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee and the authors should include a statement within the article detailing this approval. Individuals whose practice features centrally in the article should be counted as authors (see above) rather than subjects and are assumed to have contributed and/or consented to the video article in its final form.
Precedents for the scholarly video article can be found in documentary film making, performance documentation, dance film, video journalism, media studies, and other multimedia genres. The following indicative links may be useful in thinking about scholarly video format and design.
Multimedia dance and performance documentation:
Theatre, Dance and Performance Training blog
Hemispheric Institute Digital Video Library
William Forsythe Motion Bank
William Forsythe Synchronous Objects
Siobhan Davies Replay
‘SOLOS study: I was here’ video from BlackBox
Google Cultural Institute Performing Arts
On the Boards TV
Video essays in other fields:
[in]Transition Journal of Videographic Film & Moving Image Studies
Granada Centre for Visual Anthropology
Body Games - Capoeira and Ancestry
Fandor Best Video Essays 2015
Fandor Best Video Essays 2014
Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE)
Essays about video essays:
Bresland (2010) ‘On the Origin of the Video Essay’
Eriksson and Sørensen (2012) ‘Reflections on academic video’
Lavik (2012) ‘The Video Essay: The Future of Academic Film and Television Criticism?’
Lee (2015) ‘Video essay: The essay film – some thoughts of discontent’
Pritsker (2013) ‘Video Saved the Scientific Publication’
Additional resources via [in]Transition
More streaming video resources:
On dynamic fair dealing and copyright law, see:
Coombe, Rosemary J., Darren Werschler, and Martin Zeilinger (2014) Dynamic Fair Dealing: Creating Canadian Culture Online, Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
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