Internet Archive’s Trump Archive launches today

The Trump Archive launches today with 700+ televised speeches, interviews, debates, and other news broadcasts related to President-elect Donald Trump, created using the Internet Archive’s TV News Archive.

A work in progress, the growing collection now includes more than 520 hours of Trump video. The earliest excerpt dates from December 2009, and the collection continues through the present. It includes more than 500 video statements fact checked by, PolitiFact, and The Washington Post’s Fact Checker covering such controversial topics as immigration, Trump’s tax returns, Hillary Clinton’s emails, and health care.

Full list of fact checks with links to video statements in TV News Archive.

Visit the Trump Archive.

Reporters, researchers, Wikipedians, and the general public are invited to quote, compare and contrast televised statements made by Trump.

  • Use clips in your articles and videos.
  • Create supercuts on topics like Trump’s perspectives of the US press, made with our online “Popcorn” video editor.  
  • Let us know what content we are missing.  
  • If you have the technical resources, help us enhance search and discovery by collaborating in experiments to apply artificial intelligence-driven facial recognition, voice identification, and other video content analysis approaches.
  • How would you like to use such an archive?  Comment below, or write us

Why a Trump Archive?

We draw on this material, and our experience with building the successful Political TV Ad Archive, to create a curated collection of material related to Trump, with an emphasis on fact-checked statements. The video is searchable, quotable, and shareable on social media.

In response to requests by our fact checking partners on the Political TV Ad Archive project and other media, we hope to provide assistance for those tracking Trump’s evolving statements on public policy issues.

For example: in July 2016, Trump told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, “I have no relationship with Putin…I don’t think I’ve ever met him.” Stephanopoulos pressed him on this point during the interview, saying that Trump had previously claimed a relationship with him. PolitiFact ruled this statement by Trump as a “full flip flop”: “Trump’s denial of a relationship with Putin contradicted what he had said on multiple previous occasions.”

By providing a free and enduring source for TV news broadcasts of Trump’s statements, the Internet Archive hopes to make it more efficient for the media, researchers, and the public to track Trump’s statements while fact-checking and reporting on the new administration. The Trump Archive can also serve as a rich treasure trove of video material for any creative use: comedy, art, documentaries, wherever people’s inspiration takes them.

We consider the Trump Archive to be an experimental model for creating similar archives for other public officials. For example, we’ll explore the idea of creating curated collections for Trump’s nominees to head federal agencies; members of Congress of both parties (for example, perhaps the Senate and House majority and minority leadership); Supreme Court nominees, and so on.

While we’ve largely hand-curated this collection, we hope to collaborate with researchers to apply machine intelligence to expand this collection, building others and making search of our entire TV library vastly more efficient.

Such experimentation builds on our experience with first prototyping and then developing the the Political TV Ad Archive. Our first collection of political TV ads, covering ads aired in Philadelphia during the 2014 mid-term elections, was built largely by hand. However, in preparation for the Political TV Ad Archive, we created a new open source tool, the Duplitron, that was able to identify ad airings by deploying audio fingerprinting. During the course of the project, we collected nearly 3,000 ads and documented more than 364,000 ad airings.

Why now?

Just because something is broadcast or posted on the internet doesn’t mean it’s forever. Reporters and the public may take it for granted that a news story or a piece of broadcast video is only a google search away, but as newspapers, companies, and organizations fail and change, often vital information is lost. The web is far more fragile than is generally understood.

The Internet Archive’s core mission is to preserve and make accessible our cultural heritage. For example, the Wayback Machine preserves websites over time, so if pages or sites are deleted, they can still be found. For example, Rachel Maddow of MSNBC reported on how the president-elect had deleted a web page from the official transition website that had touted Trump properties.

We also preserve political and news content through the TV News Archive, which contains news broadcasts by major networks back to 2009, searchable via closed captioning. The Political TV Ad Archive archives 2016 election ads along with relevant fact checks and follow-the-money reporting by our journalism partners. Our Political Campaign web archive is preserving election-related online media, such as select candidate and political groups’ websites and Twitter and Instagram feeds.

What’s next

The Trump Archive is a work in progress; we will continue to refine the content. We hope to work with others to broaden the materials available, to make search more efficient, and otherwise make it more useful for the public. We’d like you feedback and suggestions.

The great American author William Faulkner wrote, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” We believe that the Trump Archive, in preserving the past, can help the public engage more knowledgeably with our future.

Many thanks to the thoughtful contributions of Robin Chin, Jessica Clark, Katie Dahl, Katie Donnelly, John Gonzalez, Wendy Hanamura, Tracey Jaquith, Jeff Kaplan, Roger Macdonald, Ralf Muehlen, Craig Newmark, Sylvia Paull, Alexis Rossi, Dan Schultz, Nancy Watzman, our Partners & Funders and the Vanderbilt Television News Archive – on whose shoulders we stand.

82 thoughts on “Internet Archive’s Trump Archive launches today

  1. Pingback: Internet Archive’s Trump Archive launches today | Library Stuff

  2. Pingback: Trump-Archiv | digithek blog

  3. Pingback: Video Database: Internet Archive Launches Trump Archive | LJ INFOdocket

  4. Pingback: The Trump Files: Internet Archive compiles everything Donald Trump has said on video – Game News

  5. Sustaining Donor Who Is Getting Tired of The Transparent Political Side-Taking

    I noticed that this article didn’t include a link to the Obama Archive… could you please share that?

    While it’s great for us to have access to this information regarding our President-elect, it seems just as (or even more?) important for academics and the public to have systematic access to the same information about the President for the last 8 years.

    Why was a project of this nature not a priority before the election of Donald Trump? loses credibility as a public resource that impartially serves the public when the timing and choice of its projects seems political in nature. The hysterical tone of recent emails combined with this project creates the appearance of partisanship, which a library that serves the whole public should steadfastly avoid.

    1. Keith Bradner

      They are a public resource driven by the public’s demand. I would imagine that there hasn’t been anywhere near the demand for access to videos about Obama as there has been for videos about Trump. Hopefully though, they will continue this section for the following presidents. Seems like a great resource.

    2. Roger Macdonald

      Thank you for your thoughtful comment! We don’t mean to be taking sides by opening up this experimental Trump Archive. As we wrote above: “We consider the Trump Archive to be an experimental model for creating similar archives for other public officials.”

      We used professional journalist fact checks of the President-elect as “signals” that particular speeches or interviews were noteworthy, whether or not his statements were validated. Additional televised Trump content is also included. The collection is a work in progress and we expect to work towards making it more comprehensive, in part through well meaning recommendations from folks like you.

      This Trump Archive is largely hand-curated, a non-scalable approach. With this example, we hope to attract support and creative collaborations that will lead to more collections about public officials, whatever their parties.

      We are very interested in experimenting with others to apply artificial intelligence approaches to enable any user to more efficiently create collections accompanied by rich structured metadata that can aid search engine discovery and rich contextualization links to other media resources.

      We take you concern for the appearance of partisanship to heart, and hope to dispel such interpretations by word and deed.

      1. Larry Press

        One can justify starting with Trump because he, not Obama, is the future president. Had the experiment begun during the campaign, Clinton and Trump archives would have been valuable.

        Is there a possibility doing speech recognition on the videos to produce imperfect, but searchable transcripts?

      2. Wallace

        You can’t dispel the obvious. You have turned an ‘oasis’ within the World Wide Web into just another politically motivated agenda based parking lot.

      3. Steve Lagasse

        I believe you stated “we awoke on November 9th the realization of a president that promises change so we need to create a Canada archive etc…”
        I never saw a statement when Obama handed control of the internet to persons from other countries. Many of which are opposed to gays and Christians.
        I see the Archive becoming like the rest of the media pushing a Liberal agenda. This is very discouraging to free “open minded” Americans as we are losing another piece of freedom to Liberalism.

    3. Jon

      As a sustaining donor, you should know that there is no Obama Archive (yet). Or were you just being snarky?

      You make some valid points, and I also hope to see an Obama Archive in the future. Or what about a George W. Bush Archive? Bill Clinton, anyone? Obviously, they had to start somewhere, and I think the rise of fake news, as well as Trump’s propensity to lie and ignore facts, motivated the Internet Archive to initiate a Trump Archive. I agree with them that it’s important. According to, only 15% of Trump’s statements were true or mostly true, compared to 51% for Hilary Clinton and 48% for Obama.

      The Internet Archive could do a better job of communicating the reasons for this initiative and avoiding the appearance of partiality, but as a long-time user and recent donor (not even sustaining, whatever that means LoL), I fully support this initiative.

    4. Joe Agnost

      Sustaining Donor asked: “Why was a project of this nature not a priority before the election of Donald Trump?”

      Perhaps it’s because before DJT there weren’t any serial liars awaiting the presidency? The sheer volume of lies and contradictions coming from DJT makes a project like this one very important…

    5. Mike H.

      We shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that creating this archive involved hand-curating hundreds of videos, annotating & organizing them, providing an interface, and much more. It must have taken an *incredible* amount of work. Personally, I have to believe they would love to do the same for other administrations as well, but just haven’t gotten to them.

      1. Steve Lagasse

        “I have to believe they would love to do the same for other administrations as well, but just haven’t gotten to them.”

        Obama & the Clintons have been in office 16 years. The Bushes had been in office for 12 years. Trump has not even been inaugurated yet. Plenty of time for Trump but no time for Obama, Clinton or Bush.

        The Archive has taken on a purely bias stand.

    6. Justin

      The immediate purpose of a focused archive like this about a public official is to hold them to account for the promises and statements they made, while they still have the power to fulfill the promises and the prospect of being punished in future elections for ill-advised statements. While an Obama-focused archive would be nice to have, as a practical matter it’s simply too late to hold him to account for anything because he’s almost out the door anyway and won’t be running for office again.

      That said, the Internet Archive is in fact working aggressively to archive the outgoing administration, as detailed in a post here last month:

    7. Adrian

      Agreed. This sort of thing smacks of partisanship. It’d be better if any videos included were not associated with “fact-checking” sites which adds an overlay of perceived and/or real bias. Just give us the videos and allow people to make their own judgement using their critical faculties.

      It’s only been known since November 9 who would be the President-elect. Did this project start prior to that date? Was there an Hillary Clinton library that’s been shelved post-election? And, surely, with the work you’ve partnered on with the White House for quite some time, why isn’t there an Obama library?

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  11. Other donor

    I found this: (replace usual Archive link with TVPROGRAM-President_Obama), but it’s videos from C-SPAN. Nothing like the Trump Archive.

  12. Pingback: Obama White House social media, Trump campaign receive expansive archives – Ars Technica – G Email News

  13. Cynical Susan

    If you have not done so, you might want to consider including Garry Trudeau’s “YUGE: 30 Years of Doonesbury on Trump.” Although of course Doonesbury is a comic strip, it’s often commentary as well.

  14. James Watson

    Fundamentally this is a good project – President Trump is a figure of national interest and his actions and beliefs will have a significant effect on the country over the next 8 years.

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  21. An American who's tiered of all media because they pick sides

    I think you are taking sides all media always picks a side I bet you love obama who was tyrant but lol I bet you cried when Trump lol I get it go Cyrus some more

  22. Pingback: Trump Archive launched with TV clips to track president-elect's 'evolving statements'

  23. Hudson

    Experimental? Interesting you would choose that word to cover your liberal media bias. Ill let everyone on Twitter know what a false lame article this is. Unless you want to provide a Crooked Hillary or Obama archive?

  24. George

    I would encourage an archive of all public officials, irregardless of party affiliation. Not only would it be a useful resource, but it would de-legitimize any concerns about partisanship. The archive should also contain metadata regarding the original source material.

    As to why this is just starting now, it’s the same reason genocide wasn’t actually illegal until 1948, after WWII. It’s not that it was considered okay, it’s just that no one thought we needed an actual law against it.

    Politicians have always had, as far as I know, a rather facile grasp of the truth, but up until recently it’s mostly been minor and/or sidestepping. The president-elect is in a different category, being on record as lying and also being on record about never lying.

    The unfortunate reality is that there will always be ardent supporters who will disregard any data that doesn’t fit their world view. For the rest of us, however, having an archive that can be searched and indexed would be a great resource.

  25. Pingback: Internet Archive rolls out new collection of Trump videos

  26. counterpathos

    wow. more fatuous shills.
    “We don’t mean to be taking sides by opening up this experimental Trump Archive.”
    incredibly insulting nonsense. your low opinion of your readership is blatantly demonstrated by that comment.

    res ipsa loquitur-
    your “trump archive” is more blatantly biased attack dog bullshit. keep alienating people. keep lying to your readership.

  27. gillianmoordol

    dropping unfavorable replies, are we?
    disappearing replies speak volumes
    once again:
    your bias is evident, as is your contempt for your readers. your disingenuously-crafted reply to comment above re:bias is transparent, pathetic. you are now a known commodity.

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  31. Shelley

    I think this is a fabulous idea!!! Can someone also (legally) get hold of all of trumps financial records for the last 20 years??

  32. J. Stanton

    From your FAQ: “Our culture now produces more and more artifacts in digital form. The Archive’s mission is to help preserve those artifacts and create an Internet library for researchers, historians, and scholars.”

    So this Trump archive will be “fact-checked” by the Bezos-owned Washington Post, the Soros-funded Politifact, and the Annenberg Foundation-funded

    No doubt we shall soon, in the interest of balance, be treated to the Obama and/or Hillary Clinton archives, “fact-checked” by Breitbart, Counterpunch, and websites funded by the Heritage Foundation and Socialist Workers Party.

    Oh, wait – the next “archive” in line isn’t Obama or HRC. It’s the 15+ members of Trump’s cabinet, vetted by the same biased organizations. In fact, the only potential Democrats on the list are the House and Senate minority leaders.

    I echo Sustaining Donor’s concern: the Internet Archive loses all credibility when it engages in such naked partisanship. How can I, or anyone, trust the integrity of the Internet Archive itself in such a scenario? Now that the Internet Archive has demonstrated blatant institutional bias against a specific political figure, what assurance does anyone have now that no one will – or has not already – pulled a Steve Huffman and edited the Archive itself?

    As an independent researcher who depends on the Internet Archive to preserve information otherwise lost to neglect or revisionism, I find myself deeply saddened. The Internet Archive has discarded its credibility and integrity as a source in return for a short-term cash infusion…

    …and, very likely, a long-term cash drought, since it has, by these actions, alienated roughly half of the US voting population, plus whatever fraction of the rest of the electorate still believes in outmoded concepts like “self-appointed archivists maintaining political neutrality.”

    I will be frank: anyone who lacks the emotional maturity to separate their political beliefs from their professional commitments has no business running or maintaining a so-called “Internet Archive.”


    Postscript: The way to begin such a project, in a non-partisan manner, would be as follows.

    * Start with both Trump’s and HRC’s statements throughout this election cycle
    * Invite professional organizations, journalists, and the public – both liberal and conservative – to fact-check all statements made by both sides

    To do otherwise, as the Archive has done, is to state that one candidate (Trump) deserves scrutiny that the other (HRC) does not. The irony that the Internet Archive has thus given a pass to the candidate who deleted her own email archive – in direct contravention of court order – remains stark.

  33. Adrian

    Archiving materials, which involves curation, is more of a neutral library source than is something that includes content from the so-called “fact-checking” groups – each of which has its own biases. If you’re going to create specific libraries gathering together video on political figures it would be less partisan to include videos that are not processed and filtered through these, at times, politically-tinged entities.

    And the collections should feature Trump, the Clintons, et al – without neither fear nor favor.

    By just making a Trump library – and, especially, slanting things via an overlay of editorial that accompanies non-neutral sources does add a shading to content that’s not really in character with an apolitical public archive.

  34. Pingback: The Internet Archive's Trump Archive will ensure that Trump's U-turns and lies can always be challenged – tellmenow

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  36. Sean

    Triumphant cultural rejection of knowledge is actually rather common, you will certainly find groups in any society where it exists.
    Ignorance is to be unchallenged, ignorance is bliss, and ignorance is to be on your knees.
    With 50% of your population involved in a revolt against reason you are in trouble regardless of who’s in office.

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  44. Tina Marie F

    I cannot thank you enough for putting together the Trump Archives. I have a site on G+ Donald Trump Lies and Republican Lies.. I also post under public and have had 9 million views since I started October 2015. The reason why I started posting is because I wanted to expose the truth about Trump’s lies. He is a pathological liar and cant stop lying. The reporter for the Sun has post Trumps 560 lies he told just during his campaign. He has conned his supporters. The irony is that Trump called Clinton a liar and crooked. Trump’s history is proof that Trump is the corrupt candidate and his supporters ignored this. I am sure that Trump will break the law as soon as he is sworn in, he’s been breaking laws for years.

    I will watch the video’s and post them on my G+ page. Right now I have about 4,000 daily followers and approximately 100,000 readers a day.

    Again I commend you on your work. . You are awesome!!

  45. David Lubin

    President Trump will, without doubt, go down in history as the greatest president who ever served. Your efforts to preserve his words are to be commended.

  46. Mel Beckman

    As a registered, government funded non-profit organization, you’d think would be prohibited from this sort of partisan political activity.

    1. Daniel Saner

      Would you care to elaborate on what makes this project partisan?

      It’s a pilot project that experiments with new approaches to document and archive a politician’s statements. Donald Trump will be the next U.S. president, so he seems like more than just a very obvious choice for a first subject. I have no doubt that if Hillary Clinton had been the president-elect, we would see the creation of a Hillary Archive right now. The Obama Archive, on the other hand, for all intents and purposes already exists, if not in the same curated fashion at the moment. It would be a bit pointless to put the main focus on an administration that is practically out of the door – there is enough time to reprocess and review.

      When documenting and checking an elected official’s statements is automatically considered to be partisan, society and government are in deep trouble. Let’s try to find a way back to reality and facts, which is the only thing that should ever matter in politics.

  47. Sustaining Donor Who Is Getting Tired of The Transparent Political Side-Taking

    As the OP, I want to thank Roger Macdonald for his response. I agree with another poster that my comment contained a little bit of snark, but I hope that it was taken in the spirit it was intended.

    From my perspective, the Archive has been communicating (on multiple fronts) that it is far more scared of what a Trump administration might do than it was of what an Obama administration already has done. This seems odd given the archive’s negative experience with the Obama administration, and this oddness can feed a perception of political partisanship.

    As mentioned in my first comment, I think it is crucial that the Archive avoid even the mere perception of improper political side taking if it is to both serve and win the support of the entire public.

    I obviously agree with the goal of documenting politicians in this manner, and hope that the enthusiasm and manual work required in this pilot project can be replaced with a lower overhead semi-automated approach.

  48. Pingback: See Trump Archive fact checks in one place | Internet Archive Blogs

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  50. Sharath Alva becomes a great location for the researchers and scholars for the richest resource library. As a non profit organization, It could be better, if you also balance with Trump’s opposite leader’s archive also.

    Anyway, great work. Thank you!

  51. Slickwilly1

    Whats the point? The Donald has always, and will continue to, just say whatever suits his particular goal at that particular moment. Its worked well for him so far….

  52. Deeply disappointed

    Very dismayed and disappointed to see devolve into partisanship.

    It’s clear the intent is simply to turn this into a Trump attack site (as if there aren’t enough of those already). It’s interesting to note that the comments praising the project above are from those running anti-Trump attack sites.

    As others have pointed out, it’s very telling that there is no “Obama Archive” (which would be extraordinarily useful right now, as Obama staffers are busily engaging in the destruction of Presidential records at the moment as we speak), nor a “Clinton Archive”. Nor will there ever be such an archive for ANY Democrat politician, simply because it does not fit with the agenda of the project creators.

    A few minutes’ research reveals Nancy Watzman to be a hardcore left wing partisan, and no doubt the same is true of the other (unnamed) participants. She has the right to her opinions of course, but not the right to claim those opinions are unbiased *facts*. I also notice you are using solely leftist “fact checking” sites with proven left wing bias. If there was a serious attempt at being impartial here, they would, at a minimum, have taken the following measures:

    1. Ensure the team is meticulously picked to include equal numbers of liberal and conservative members. (Note the only impartial study of media bias ever performed[1] fulfilled this requirement. Anyone who is interested in learning how to construct an unbiased team for a research project would do well to consult this paper )

    2. Use an equal number of liberal and conservative fact check sites.

    Failing to implement both of the above measures virtually *guarantees* a partisan bias.

    I used to be able to rely on the Internet Archive as one of the few sources of unfiltered raw data. But no longer. Now the raw data will be placed side by side with and tainted by a liberal commentary. I prefer to do my *own* analysis of the data and form my own judgments, rather than have somebody else’s partisan opinion thrust upon me.
    It also means I cannot even rely on the record being *complete*; due to the selection bias of the creators, only those records that they feel would paint Trump in a negative are likely to be included.


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