Oral History and Ethics
Steps we considered before, during and after an oral history interview:
1. Explain the interview
2. What consent and copyright mean. We used verbal consent as it best fit in the context of Caldas, Colombia. We also asked participants where we can show their videos and where we cannot.
3. Where the interview take place is very important. Often we visited the homes of participants a few days before interviewing the participant. This was important for us because by going to their homes without cameras and video recorders, participants felt comfortable with us and it also gave us a space where we explained in detail the process of oral history. Most of the interviews were taken place at the comfort of their home.
4. The relationship during the interview. Both interviewee and interviewer were in constant communication with each other. For example, we told participants that they could stop the interview whenever they wanted to.
5. Maintaining confidentiality. Some participants asked us to not share their stories in Pácora, but that we could use their stories in other parts of the country, and in the U.S.
6. Clarifying rights after the interview: Our initial thought was to leave the archives in the Cultural House, but after getting feedback from community members, we are thinking of another place to store the archives. We are still working on that.
7. Finalizing the Recording Agreement. We are still in the process of editing each recording. We will be in contact with each participant after finalizing the videos.
8. Preparing for preservation. We are still working on this.
There are other steps for oral history, but for the context of Pácora, these steps best fit the criteria for oral history.