Interactive panoramas elevate storytelling efforts

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The Washington Post launched an investigative multimedia package on Sunday about DeOnté Rawlings, a 14-year-old who was killed 19 months ago by off-duty police officers. Although the police officers were cleared of any wrong-doing, this in-depth report analyzes the case using a timeline, video, text article and interactive scene re-creation module. This interactive section impressed me most, with multiple panoramas synced to user interaction to unfold the events over time.

Interactive producer (and UNC alumna) Kat Downs created this interface by stitching two panoramas together with hotspots inside the image and on the corresponding graphic. As users click through the six stages, the panorama animates accordingly to replicate the scene of events. I have never seen this functionality before with panoramas, but it is exciting to see the potential!

Although I would have liked to see more creativity with the timeline, I appreciated the audio files, photos and complementary documents. Also, if you have the time, make sure to check out Alexandra Garcia‘s corresponding video. Garcia is an exceptionally talented videographer, and I also get the impression that she produced the panoramas for this package.

[Hat tip to Bill Couch for the heads-up on]

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