Public Lab Research note

Embedding images with interactive context info

by coreytegeler | July 17, 2019 13:53 17 Jul 13:53 | #20168 | #20168

I'm working with some people from the International Center of Photography developing a tool aimed to increase authorship, trust, and accountability of photographers and journalistic sources publishing photographs. The project is called Four Corners, referencing the four corners of an image, as we are using each to attach a set of contextual information to be embedded with the image.

image description

In the bottom right corner, you can display your own caption, credit, license, bio, and code of ethics. You can also allow the reader to contact you or your agent for potential sales or reproductions of the image. For the first time in history, a reader will be able to immediately know a photographer's code of ethics---to what extent do they respect the conventions of journalism, manipulate the image with software, set up photographs, work as an artist, etc.

In the bottom left corner, you can explain what was going on when you made the image, include interviews with the subjects of the photograph or with witnesses to the event that is depicted, or the perspectives of anyone else with information that helps the reader to better understand the circumstances when the photograph was made.

Related imagery
In the top left corner, you can provide context to your image by contextualizing it with other images. For example, you can add photographs made before or after the event depicted, a video of the scene, or a comparative image, such as one made in the same place at another time, or a photograph of the same person in another circumstance.

In the top right corner, you can include links to websites with a related article or video, historical explanation, or any other information that helps to deepen the reader's understanding of the image.

The tool is primarily for journalistic uses but can be utilized in any which way an image can be augmented with additional info.

Still in beta, the embeds you create on our site will only work on sites that have been loaded with the Four Corners script as we acquire funding for hosting services to allow for a simpler one-step copy/paste embedding process.

I would love to hear how this can be used by citizen science projects that could utilize Four Corners to better communicate and contextualize image-based findings.

Some quick links for the site:

Feel free to chime in below with any ideas or feedback or how you would be interested in using the tool. You can also email me at


Fantastic project, @ coreytegeler, thanks for sharing this!!!!

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