Page last updated at 15:46 GMT, Thursday, 28 April 2011 16:46 UK
How Democracy Live works

WHAT IS DEMOCRACY LIVE?

Democracy Live is the BBC's website which offers live and on demand video coverage of the UK's national political institutions and the European Parliament. Alongside the video, we have guides to how the different institutions work and who sits in them. Our search engine is a BBC "first" - it uses speech-to-text to take you straight to your points of interest in the video. Read our launch blog.

WHAT DOES DEMOCRACY LIVE COVER?

We cover the main chambers of the House of Commons, House of Lords, Scottish Parliament, Northern Ireland Assembly, Welsh Assembly and full sittings of the European Parliament. We also cover Westminster Hall and Select Committees at Westminster. When there is no business in the main chambers in Edinburgh, Belfast and Cardiff, we cover committee meetings.

HOW DO I KNOW WHAT YOU'RE COVERING?

Each of the institutions has its own section. On the top right of these sections, you can see a list of items of business we are covering that day.

WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN AN INSTITUTION IS NOT SITTING?

At the end of the day's business, over a weekend or during a recess, we show recorded proceedings.

HOW DOES SEARCH WORK ON DEMOCRACY LIVE?

Our Search is one of the most innovative aspects of Democracy Live. It works by using a "speech-to-text" system. After a video is made available to watch again, our system adds words spoken in the video for you to search on. When it finds a word you've asked for, it gives you a link straight to the point in the video where the word is spoken. You can also search for representatives by name, place and postcode.

I KNOW A CERTAIN NAME OR PLACE WAS MENTIONED IN AN ITEM OF BUSINESS BUT I CAN'T FIND IT IN YOUR ARCHIVE. WHY?

Our speech-to-text system may not have been able to understand a certain word or words. Try again with another, less specific word which is related to your original search term. If the word you're looking for is contained in the text on the video page, it should come up in a search. Try also searching for the name of the person who spoke the words. If you still can't find the word, it may be that the item of business was not covered by Democracy Live or that it took place during the development work which is currently taking place.

CAN I EMBED DEMOCRACY LIVE VIDEO IN MY BLOG OR WEBSITE?

Yes. You should be able to click on the Embed button on the bottom of the video player and copy the code.

HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE YOU TO MAKE AN ITEM OF BUSINESS AVAILABLE TO WATCH AGAIN?

This depends on the duration of the business. Our systems have to process the video after it's gone out live and this takes approximately the same time as the length of the business. It may be that some longer items of business which take place late in the afternoon or evening don't appear on the site until the following day.

HOW MUCH CONTENT IS IN YOUR ARCHIVE?

At launch in November 2009, our archive was limited, but it increases in size every day. Our Historic moments section contains a selection of key moments since the 1980s.

How can I see how my MP voted?

Our videos will include the result of votes as announced in the Commons, but to see how your MP has voted, you can search

We will seek to include links the following day to the full Hansard voting list. You can also see how a particular MP has voted on all issues on

I'M NOT IN THE UK. CAN I WATCH DEMOCRACY LIVE VIDEO?

Yes. There are no geographic restrictions on our video.

HOW CAN I CONTACT DEMOCRACY LIVE?

You can send an email to democracylive@bbc.co.uk. You can also follow us on Twitter at bbcdemlive.

WHAT IS DEMOCRACY LIVE'S ACCESSIBILITY POLICY?

The BBC is committed to making its content and services available to all licence fee payers, regardless of their age, abilities or disabilities.

While we have been able to create the BBC Democracy Live site to support the needs of most of our audiences, there are two cases where some users may experience some difficulties accessing the content:

• The video content and "Follow" navigation functionality are only available for users who have JavaScript turned on in their browsers. Users who cannot use JavaScript can view the textual content, and navigate around it using the other navigation functionality.

If you would like to share your views about the accessibility of the Democracy Live site, please email the BBC Useability and Accessibility Team at AccessibilityTeam@bbc.co.uk.




SEE ALSO

More from BBC Democracy Live
Compare who does what across the UK and Europe
Our A-Z of words used in the business of politics
Discover what BBC Democracy Live has to offer you

BBC navigation

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