Begin playback at a specific point - Time-based media

Use Case

Often an audio or video resource will have content that is part of the object but not significant, such as a microphone check, or audience noise before the start of a performance, or a test card. The start property allows the publisher to specify a point where a client application should begin playback.

Implementation notes

This recipe extends Simplest Manifest - Video by adding the information required by a client to start playback at a particular point. This is done by adding the start property to the Manifest with the start time in seconds.

The target of start must be a JSON object with id and type properties and can be either a Canvas, or a Specific Resource with a Selector and a source property where the value is a Canvas.

In this use case, the target type property is a Specific Resource ("type": "SpecificResource"), and the Selector type property is a Point Selector ("type": "PointSelector") that identifies a starting time point ("t": 120.5) within the source.

For more on the start property, see: Start Property.

About selector classes:

Selectors in Annotation targets are used to describe how to retrieve a given part of a resource. There are three Selector classes defined in the IIIF specification, but only the PointSelector class is appropriate for this use case. The PointSelector class defines a specific point either spatially (x, y) and/or temporally (t).

For more information on other Selector classes, see: IIIF Open/Web Annotation Extensions and W3C Web Annotation Selectors.


This example shows a Manifest with a single Canvas with a duration of 1801.055 seconds. It has a single video file (30-minute-clock.mp4) which is associated with it. The start property specifies a start point of 120.5 seconds into the playback. The video was created by DrLex1 and was released using a Creative Commons Attribution license.

JSON-LD | View in Ramp

Code samples: Python: iiif-prezi3

Related recipes

  • Simplest Manifest - Video shows a manifest for a simple video resource.
  • Simplest Manifest - Audio shows a manifest for a simple audio resource.
  • [Load Manifest Beginning with a Specific Canvas][202] uses the start property to load at a specific canvas.