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FAQs

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The basics

What is Artifact?

Think of your favorite podcast (e.g., This American Life, Howard Stern, Invisibilia, Radiolab, or whatever floats your boat). 


Now imagine it as a gift, focused on a person, relationship, event, or question that matters to you. 


That’s Artifact.

How does it work?

Artifact conducts interviews about a subject of your choice. Each interview yields one podcast episode.


Step 1. Choose the topic. 

  • Tell us what to explore and who to talk to – family, friends, colleagues, etc.


Step 2. We do the work. 

  • Scheduling. Interviews over the phone. Edit.


Step 3. You get a personal podcast to gift or share with friends and family.

  • Waiting at a dedicated, easy-to-share webpage.


I want to purchase an Artifact

When will my Artifact be ready for delivery?

Artifacts are ready within seven business days of the final interview.


For example, if your Artifact consists of three interviews, that means that it will be ready within seven business days of that third interview.


For Artifacts of different "sizes," things typically look like this:

  • One interview—turnaround is usually about two weeks
  • Two or three interviews—typically about three weeks.
  • Four or more interviews, your coordinator will provide a timeline (which will depend on the number of guests specified). As a rule of thumb, if your Artifact involves six or fewer guests, you can expect delivery within four weeks.

What if I’m not certain about the subject of my Artifact?

No problem! It is common for customers to instant message or speak over the phone with an Artifact coordinator to scope what kind of Artifact they want to gift. To do so, click here.

What if I’m not certain about who interview guests should be for my Artifact?

Again, no problem! It is common for customers to instant message or speak over the phone with an Artifact coordinator to strategize on who should sit for interviews. To do so, click here.

How will I receive Artifact?

We provide your Artifact at a dedicated, easy-to-share webpage.

How do I actually deliver or “gift” my Artifact?

Customers deliver their Artifacts in different ways, depending on circumstance. Your dedicated coordinator looks forward to speaking with you about how you’d like to deliver your Artifact, but here are a few ideas to get your going:


The Personal Note

Write a personal note (email or physical) to the recipient(s) and provide the webpage link in the note. Based on customer feedback we find that including instructional language in the body of the personal note that says something like the following is helpful:

  1. Find a quiet place or go for a walk.
  2. Put on your headphones.
  3. Enter in this webpage ([URL here]).
  4. Listen.

The Group Listen

Tell the recipients that you have a recording you’d like to share. Schedule a time to listen to the recording when those who you’d like to hear your Artifact are together. 

  • Covid-19 Note: “The Group Listen” can also be done remotely (over video conference) in this moment where physical distancing is so important to public health. Please ask your project coordinator if you would like Artifact to help.

The Surprise

Act like you are putting on a podcast at home or while taking a drive in the car. Feedback from customers is that the element of surprise can be quite impactful!

What languages does Artifact support?

Currently, you can purchase Artifacts in English, Spanish, and French.


We will support additional languages in the coming months. If you would like to purchase an Artifact in another language, , please share that with us by emailing [email protected]


We prioritize adding new languages based on customer demand, so please let us know!

For this “professional edit” – what is the edit like?

For all packages

Each Artifact is professionally edited, including a narrative introduction from the interviewer and curated musical overlays. 


For packages that include more than 1 interview

In consultation with you, your Artifact may be edited into multiple “episodes.” 


The rationale behind this is simple: accessibility. 


An Artifact with a run time of an hour or so would require those with whom you share Artifact to set aside a portion of their day to listen.


Compare that to taking the same Artifact, but editing into two episodes, with each episode at a length of 15 - 30 minutes. That’s an easy listen. It’s accessible - making it possible for your friends, family, or colleagues to experience your Artifact in bite sizes over several days.

Why not video?

Video is an interview medium we will explore in the future. With that said there are two reasons we are not using video as an interview medium today.


First, video chat creates technical challenges when an Internet connection is spotty. This creates both sound quality and consistency issues, both of which are detrimental. 


Second, we receive consistent feedback from customers that the idea of sitting for an “on camera” interview, while intriguing on first consideration, becomes both intimidating and unnatural as guests get closer to the interview. We’ve taken that feedback to heart. Our North Star at Artifact is:


Every interview guest comfortable. 


Everything we do is focused on driving at this North Star. The reason is that we find that the more comfortable customers are when they sit for interviews, the better they express themselves. The better they express themselves, the better the product we can provide to you. It’s that simple.

Who will hear this?

That is up to your Artifact guests, recipients, and you. 


Artifacts are generally intended for sharing with family and close friends – this encourages participants to be open and specific in their interviews.


With that said, you are absolutely encouraged to share your Artifact more widely if that's something you would like to do.

Can I get a copy?

Of course. We make Artifacts available to you for easy sharing with others through a dedicated, easy-to-share webpage. Upon request we also provide you with:

  • The audio files making up your edited Artifact.
  • The raw audio files.

Can I purchase more than one Artifact at a time?

Absolutely. 


In fact, first-time customers often come to us with expansive ideas for the Artifact they’d like to commission. Working with their Artifact coordinator, they tend to select a slice of that originally expansive idea. They also either decide to commission additional, more focused Artifacts alongside their first Artifact, or plan to commission those additional, more focused Artifacts in the future.


While Artifacts come in all shapes and sizes, we can say that there is a common thread across each: It is about depth and not breadth.


What if an interview guest needs to reschedule their interview?

Guests are free to reschedule up to 24 hours before an interview. If a guest reschedules within 24 hours, we charge a $20 fee. 100% of this fee goes to the interviewer to compensate them for reserving the time on their calendar. 


Often, the guest wishes to pay the rescheduling fee themselves. Other times, the original purchaser wishes to cover the fee—for example, if the guest who needed to reschedule is an elderly relative. Our policy is to wait 24 hours for the guest to reschedule. If the interview is not rescheduled within 24 hours, we will contact you, the purchaser, to pay the rescheduling fee. 



What if I want a refund?

If an interview is never scheduled for an Artifact episode, we refund 100% of your payment for that episode, no questions asked. If an interview is scheduled for an Artifact episode, we refund your payment for that episode minus a $35 cancellation fee. 


This fee compensates the interviewer for reserving time on their calendar, and covers the administrative costs of preparing the interview.


What if I want to invite a guest who won’t be able to set themselves up?

When inviting guests, you’ll have the opportunity to assign a “helper” who will take care of scheduling the guest’s interviews. The “helper” can be you or anyone else with an email address. This is a great way to get less tech-savvy folks or children set up with Artifact!

Who owns the Artifact that I purchase?

You do.


I am being interviewed for an Artifact

What if I have trouble connecting with my interviewer?

Great question. Please email us at [email protected]. Your coordinator will follow up immediately.

How much time does being an interview guest take?

A total of between 35 and 60 minutes. Here’s how that breaks out:


We ask you to complete a brief pre-interview questionnaire.

(5 - 15 minutes)


Your interview.

(30 - 45 minutes)

What is the process?

Step 1. Your pre-interview thoughts & interview scheduling.

  • You will complete a brief pre-interview questionnaire (about 5 - 15 minutes to complete).
  • Your answers will provide the interviewer with whom you will speak with helpful context. They will also get you thinking about what you would like to talk about.
  • At the end of the questionnaire you will be asked to schedule your interview.

Step 2. Your interview.

  • It will be conducted over the phone.
  • Allocate a 30 - 45 minute time block.
  • Find a quiet place with reliable cellular reception to ensure sound quality.

Step 3. The Final Product

  • Once the interviews making up this Artifact are complete and edited, the person purchasing the Artifact will receive the final product and share.

How can I best prepare for my interview?

  • Review your answers to your pre-interview questionnaire before the interview itself. We will share those answers with you once you complete them.
  • Find a quiet place with reliable telephone reception to ensure sound quality.
  • Have fun. It’s a conversation about something or someone that is important to you!

Who will hear this?

Artifacts are intended for family and close friends – not wide sharing, so you can be open and specific.

 

With that said, if the buyer, guests (you), and the recipient would like to share more widely, go for it! 

What if I need to reschedule my interview time?

You are free to reschedule up to 24 hours before an interview. If you reschedule within 24 hours, we charge a $20 fee. 100% of this fee goes to the interviewer to compensate them for reserving the time on their calendar. 


Often, guests wish to pay the rescheduling fee themselves. Other times, the original purchaser wishes to cover the fee. Our policy is to wait 24 hours for a guest to reschedule. If the interview is not rescheduled within 24 hours, we will contact the purchaser to pay the rescheduling fee.

What if I need help with the computer sometimes?

Not to worry! You can ask a family member or friend to schedule your interviews through our website—and we’ll make it easy for them to help out.

I received an Artifact

Can I get a copy of my Artifact? 

Yes. We make Artifacts available to you for easy sharing with others through a dedicated, easy-to-share webpage. Upon request we also provide you with:

  • The audio files making up your edited Artifact.
  • The raw audio files.

To make this request, please email us at [email protected] 

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