Virtual-Async Video Guidance

Permission/Release Forms #

When schools submit videorecordings of student performances, they are responsible for working within their school/school district guidelines to acquire media release permission by students and their caregivers.

Speech: Number of Videos #

Since the same material is usually presented each round in most categories, only one video is needed, except for these categories:

  • Extemporaneous Speech (middle/high)
  • Impromptu Speech (high)
  • Radio News Reporting (high)
  • Storytelling (high)

Following are instructions:

HS Extemp/Radio #

The State Office will provide 3 sets (1 per round) of radio packets/extemp. questions to coaches about 2 weeks prior to the video submission deadline. The coach arranges times with each contestant (in-person, via videoconference, or via message) to share radio packet or five questions, of which the contestant will select one. A video of that contestant’s presentation for each round should be recorded and finalized with coach within 45 minutes (to allow time for technical considerations). The coach does not need to video record prep time.

HS Impromptu #

The State Office will provide 3 sets (1 per round), to coaches about a week prior to the video submission deadline. For each of the three rounds, the coach will arrange times to record each contestant (either in-person or via videoconference), present contestant with three prompts, and will begin recording and timing once the contestant selects their prompt, reciting it aloud.

ML Extemp #

Coaches should use these questions and arrange a time with each contestant (in-person, via videoconference, or via message) to share five questions, of which the contestant will select one. A video of that contestant’s presentation should be recorded and finalized with the coach within 45 minutes (to allow time for technical considerations). The coach should note the five questions shown to the student for Level 1 and ensure five different questions are shared with the student for Level 2.

HS Storytelling #

Students will record a story for each of three areas, submitted by the coach, with each story assigned to a different round for adjudication. For State, students will select one of the three to perform.

Video Format #

The current, most universal and versatile file format is .mp4. Use a free tool (for up to 25 videos per day), such as CloudConvert (which is entirely cloud-based and can be run in your web browser), to convert video files to MP4. For one-act plays uploaded to the AnywhereSeat platform by Ludus, these guidelines are suggested.

Check Video Quality #

Advisors are responsible for ensuring video quality is sufficient for evaluation purposes, which includes being fully audible, for the duration of the video. Adjudicators are explicitly told to not take sound/video quality into account in their evaluation, unless they cannot hear nor see the presentation to the extent that they are unable to assess the performance. In those cases, the entry will be considered a no-show.

Equipment #

There are no particular requirements, nor restrictions for equipment used (particularly since WISDAA contests are non-comparative). In individual recordings (such as for Speech), students may use earbuds, a headset, or phone as a microphone.

Speech Manuscripts #

Using mobile phone and tablet devices (or even laptops) as manuscripts are allowable for virtual contests when students are unable to print, but students should practice using such devices so they are comfortable and can still engage in “eye contact” with the camera when recording. We will include guidance to adjudicators that this is allowable, but subject to critique (for poise, but not outright lowering score just because the student didn’t have the type of manuscript an adjudicator prefers).

Editing Restrictions #

Recording should be single camera, single-take, except to allow stitching separate student video segments together (particularly where scheduling or bandwidth is a concern). Fade-in/out transitions are allowable in that context, but no other editing other than connecting the video with subtle transitions is allowed. Single-take recording does allow for camera switching for both in-person video capture as well as screen recording of videoconferences (such as using Switcher Studio or a similar tool). The key rule is no post-production editing, which is what delineates theatre from film.

Platforms & Sharing #

Theatre Platform #

One-Act plays are encouraged to be uploaded to our partner, AnywhereSeat by Ludus.

Speech (ML/HS) Platform #

(High school and middle level). Google Drive, YouTube, and Dropbox are popular options. Advisors are responsible for ensuring the link from any video or file sharing platform is viewable by anyone, so adjudicators can see the presentations. Do NOT use links shared directly/privately to a specific email address, as those will not be accessible to the various adjudicators who attempt to access the link.

Platform Instructions #

  • Google Drive (see Step 2 > Allow general access to the file)
  • YouTube (follow instructions for Unlisted videos)
  • Dropbox (see section “Create and share a Dropbox link with view-only access”)

Adjudicators are encouraged to notify the State Office when they are unable to access a video, but it is up to advisors to respond quickly and within the window of time provided for adjudication. In cases where this cannot be resolved in a timely manner, the entry will be considered a no-show. Advisors are strongly encouraged to double-check that sharing settings are correct by accessing links from incognito/private browser windows, where they are not logged into their usual Google/YouTube/Dropbox account.

Registering Video Links #

Theatre #

Videos may be uploaded to AnywhereSeat by Ludus (or a link to another sharing platform may be posted there).

Speech (ML/HS) #

Once an entry has been initially registered as virtual or dispatched to the virtual contest for a particular level, coaches should log into SpeechWire, navigate to the list of My tournaments, click the “Register” link next to the appropriate festival, and click the Video links icon to add the link(s).

Students: Watching Peers #

As part of annual update of their student rosters in SpeechWire, coaches can provide an email address for each participating student. This could be a school-provided email address for students, or a special personal email address created by the student for purposes of participation. SpeechWire will create student accounts linked to those email addresses, which students will use to log in and view asynchronous, pre-recorded video entries of peers assigned to the same “rooms” each round, just as they would see those performances at an in-person festival. For synchronous rounds, the student’s SpeechWire account will log them into a videoconference room where they will gather with other contestants and the adjudicator for their round. For safety and security, only contestants and adjudicators will have access to any asynchronous or synchronous rounds; family/friends/other guests will not, unless they watch in the same room with their student when their student is logged on.