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Library & Multimedia

User Tips

You may need to download a plug-in or application to get the most out of the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) online products, including video, audio, or interactive features. To help you in this process, OVC has put together some user tips and reference links to these applications—

Although most Web browsers already come equipped to handle audio/video files, you may still find this page useful if you—

  • Wish to change or increase your format audio/viewing options.
  • Would like to update an application version.
  • Are running an earlier Web browser version that requires that you download plug ins.

List of Plug-ins or Applications

Adobe Acrobat
The Adobe Acrobat Reader is necessary for viewing PDF files (also referred to as portable document formats). Most OVC Publications are posted on the OVC Website in PDF and HTML. PDFs are the closest versions to the printed/published materials with respect to formatting (layout and images). Download the Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Get Adobe Reader

Players From Adobe: Flash & Shockwave
OVC offers other multimedia products, which may require additional plug-ins like Adobe Shockwave (formerly Macromedia Shockwave) and Flash Player. Both these Adobe plug-ins can be downloaded for free.

Get Adobe Flash Player

Get Adobe Shockwave Player

Depending on your security settings, you may see a Security Warning dialog box and possibly a reference to ActiveX control. Follow the install instructions.

QuickTime files are downloaded to the computer’s hard drive so they may take longer to launch. QuickTime files may be viewed on Windows or Macintosh systems. The QuickTime player may be downloaded for free. Download QuickTime.

Download QuickTime logo

VLC Media Player
VLC (initially VideoLAN Client) is an open source, portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats. This freeware is updated regularly and works for Macs and PCs. The VLC media play may be downloaded for free. Download VLC.

VLC player iconDownload VLC icon

Windows Media Player
Windows Media Player usually comes with the Windows operating system and other Microsoft products. However, you may wish to download the most recent version from the Windows Media Download Center.

JavaScript must be enabled to use certain features of the site. For guidance on how to enable JavaScript in your browser, view these instructions.

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Basics on Viewing: File Size, Resolution, and Download Times

This section covers some basics about audio and video files, speed, and resolution—all of which affect your viewing experience. Important factors:

  • Type of file being accessed.
  • Your computer's processor speed.
  • Amount of available RAM (random access memory).
  • Speed of your Internet connection.

The larger the file and higher the resolution, the longer it will take your computer download a video clip (because high resolution requires your system to process a great deal more information). It's recommended that users who have systems with limited memory or older processing chips select low-resolution video clips for a faster download experience.

The speed of your Internet connection also affects the download time because your system can process the information only as fast as it’s transmitted through your connection. The following resolution choices are recommended according to your connection:

  • High resolution: Recommended for broadband users
  • Medium resolution: Recommended for IDSN and 56k modems
  • Low resolution: Recommended for 28.8k dial-up users

If you’re interested in being able to play a video clip or a full-length video, such as those associated with Through Our Eyes: Children, Violence, and Trauma, without Internet access, PC users can download the "Windows Media Version" to your laptop or desktop. Right-click on the video file and choose "Save Target As" to save to your hard drive or other device. This will allow you to play the video from your computer without Internet access. If you’re interested in making DVD copies, please consult the Burn a CD or DVD in Windows Media Center article available from Windows Support.

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Links to Support Services

For additional support, visit the following sites:

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Social Media Video Sharing

You can spread the word about OVC’s videos and video clips by pasting the URL for a particular video into a Facebook status or a Twitter tweet. To do this, visit OVC’s Video page and find the clip you’d like to share. Right click on the Windows Media Player or QuickTime file and select "Copy Shortcut." Then, in your Facebook status or Twitter tweet, right click and select "Paste." Make sure to include a comment or two about the resource!

If you’re interested in sharing a YouTube video from OVC’s channel, select the video you’d like to share and click "Share", next to the "About" tab. You’ll be given the option to share on the following platforms:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Plus
  • Blogger
  • Reddit
  • Tumblr
  • Pinterest
  • VKontakte
  • Odnoklassniki
  • StumbleUpon

You can either click on the icon for the social media platform to which you’d like to share the video and follow the instructions or use the provided YouTube URL in a post about the video.


If you click on the Facebook logo, you’ll be directed to a page that says "Post to Your Wall." On this page, you’ll find a text box in which to write something about the video and you’re given sharing options (e.g. Public, Friends, Custom, etc.). By sharing a YouTube video in this manner, your friends will be able to play the video from your page or their news feed.

An alternative means for sharing the video is to paste the URL that is provided by YouTube, below the logos, in a status post. If you choose this option, your friends will be still able to play the video from your page or their news feed.


If click on the Twitter logo, you’ll be directed to a page that says "Share a link with your followers." On this page, you’ll find a pre-filled tweet, with the video’s URL, that you can adjust as you’d like.

TwitterAn alternative means for sharing the video is to paste the URL that is provided by YouTube, below the logos, in a tweet.


The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) is committed to providing access to our electronic and information technology, including our web pages, for individuals with disabilities in accordance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. Read more on this from USDOJ.

Contact AskOVC if you have a disability and the format of any material on our web pages interferes with your ability to access the information. Please indicate the nature of the accessibility problem, the web address of the requested material, your preferred format in which you want to receive the material (electronic format (ASCII, etc.), standard print, large print, etc.), and your contact information.

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