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What's in our corpus?

Thu, 23.01 2020 — 

On the occasion of the first public release of the impresso interface, we wish to take stock of our newspaper corpus. More than a year has passed since the last corpus update…

On the occasion of the first public release of the impresso interface, we wish to take stock of our newspaper corpus. More than a year has passed since the last corpus update and a lot has happened in impresso ever since!

Impresso in numbers

So far our data acquisition strategy has been focussing on Swiss and Luxembourgish newspapers and, as of January 2020, the impresso corpus consists of 76 newspapers (50 Swiss and 26 Luxembourgish), whose material breaks down as follow:

  • number of newspaper issues: 604,769
  • number of pages: 5,445,822
  • number of words: 12,508,779,241
  • number of images: 3,467,640
  • number of content items: 47,876,994

A word about terminology: content item is the term we use to refer to newspaper contents below the page level. Typically, pages image are segmented and classified into finer-grained content units such as articles, advertisements, images, tables, weather forecasts, obituaries, etc. – this is precisely what is referred to by content items. This segmentation process is also known as document layout analysis.

Impresso newspaper digitized materials were provided by our associated partners, namely: the Bibliothèque nationale de Luxembourg, the Swiss National Library, the Valais Media Library and State Archives, and the newspapers Neue Zürcher Zeitung and Le Temps (Ringier group). Further Swiss institutions also participates to imprsso endeavour with their sources, that is to say: the newspapers La Liberté, Freiburger Nachrichten, L’Essor, Le Confédéré, Bote vom Untersee, the group ArcInfo in collaboration of the Bibliothèque de la Chaux-de-Fonds, the Bibliothèque cantonale et universitaire de Fribourg, and the Swiss Social Archives in collaboration with UNIA. Physical acquisition of the material would not have been possible without the contribution of RERO, the Library Network of Western Switzerland. We take the opportunity here to thank all these partners for their support and contributions.

Open data in impresso

While in impresso we strive for open data, impresso titles are subject to different right statement regimens depending on their copyright situations.

Some contents are freely available for personal and academic use (‘Personal and Academic use’), while others are no longer in copyright and may be used without restrictions (‘Public’). The former are the contents to which impresso users are granted access upon acceptance and signature of the Terms of Use, while the latter are visible and usable wihtout restriction not the need for login (to know more about how to get access visit the impresso interface or drop us a line at info[at]impresso-project[dot]ch).

At the time of writing, the public subset of our corpus amounts to:

  • 79,746 newspaper issues (~15% of the total)
  • ~6 million pages
  • 32,964 images (~10% of the total)
  • half a billion tokens of text (n=572,030,104).

The two plots below show the distribution of newspaper issues over time (plot 1: 1738-1900; plot 2: 1900-2018), distinguishing the two conditions of use. It appears clearly that the period 1831-1877 is the richest in terms of publicly available contents.

Download plot 1

Download plot 2

What’s coming next?

Our corpus is continously evolving and growing, and here come the main perspectives.

On the short term, two titles (Schweizer Arbeitgeber and the Schweizerische Handels-Zeitung) from our partner the Swiss Economic Archives (SWA), as well as the Bundesblatt (Federal Gazette), will soon be ingested. The Bundesblatt is a weekly publication of the Swiss Government in French, German and Italian which includes various official documents. Digital material is available from 1848 on in German and French, and from 1971 on for Italian. Periodical publications originating from different bodies (the government in the case of Bundesblatt, and unions in the case of SWA titles) will allow for comparative analyses of discourses.

On the long term, we aim at expanding the impresso corpus beyond the Swiss and Luxembourgish borders. To this end, we are actively collaborating with further national libraries and partners and, depending on time resources, more material in English and French will join the impresso corpus.

Corpus statistics

The table below lists aggregate statistics about the corpus at the level of newspaper title. If you want to further explore these contents, simply head to the Newspapers section of the impresso interface and start browsing.

newspaper id newspaper title start year end year n. issues n. pages n. tokens n. images
actionfem L’Action féminine 1927 1940 101 1900 834001 75
armeteufel Arme Teufel 1903 1929 916 3678 6072816 411
avenirgdl L’avenir 1868 1871 995 3927 13103088 4
BDC Bulletin des séances de la Constituante 1839 1839 23 96 57942 1
BLB Bündner Landbote 1846 1847 110 430 530239 0
BNN Bündner Nachrichten 1885 1892 1906 7674 15463632 0
buergerbeamten Bürger- und Beamten-Zeitung 1898 1916 3008 13390 27445272 163
CDV Courrier du Valais 1843 1857 1200 4880 7660997 161
CON La Contrée 1902 1903 101 404 516013 303
courriergdl Courrier du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg 1844 1868 4367 18037 41672201 2
deletz1893 De Letzeburger 1893 1909 887 3634 3926531 1261
demitock De Mitock e Wocheblad fir Jux an Zodi 1937 1940 134 536 799744 1258
DFS Wochenblatt für die vier löblichen Kantone Ury, Schwytz, Unterwalden und Zug 1814 1849 1825 7687 10531868 6
diekwochen Diekircher Wochenblatt 1841 1848 444 1868 2058403 638
DLE Der Landbote des freiburgischen Seebezirks 1909 1914 402 1657 2781257 5347
DTT Die Tat 1935 1978 12970 218285 541602394 57979
dunioun D’Unio’n 1944 1948 891 4532 11720093 2520
DVF Der Volksfreund 1879 1885 876 3518 4796603 0
EDA L’Écho des Alpes 1839 1844 544 2225 2445174 51
EXP L’Express 1738 2018 46472 703111 1548614911 1041396
EZR Der Erzähler 1806 1865 3555 18040 23734243 27
FCT La FCTA 1955 1963 428 1724 2234291 0
FZG Freiburger Nachrichten 1865 2018 33692 364417 821100096 55624
GAV Gazette du Valais / Nouvelle gazette du Valais 1855 1922 4728 19573 42559916 511
GAZ Gazette du Simplon 1842 1847 390 1615 3562505 55
gazgrdlux Gazette du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg 1878 1878 141 574 1352589 3
GDL Gazette de Lausanne 1804 1991 51062 441517 1105119085 227873
HRV Der helvetische Volksfreund 1799 1801 152 2227 1160909 3
IMP L’Impartial 1881 2018 41749 775756 1383163181 1041538
indeplux L’indépendance luxembourgeoise 1871 1934 18654 72896 203233645 8472
JDF Journal du canton de Fribourg 1830 1833 319 1274 1382340 58
JDG Journal de Genève 1826 1998 49180 495926 1423762761 211602
JDV Le Journal du Valais 1848 1848 92 373 527437 0
kommmit Komm mit mir! 1884 1884 22 192 50100 162
LAB Der Liberale Alpenbote 1848 1860 2257 9126 11987230 0
landwortbild Luxemburger Land in Wort und Bild 1895 1895 39 314 214810 156
LBP Le Bien public 1879 1888 1440 5791 13009090 19082
LCE Confédéré 1861 2018 16599 95897 185284905 164011
LCG Le Confédéré de Fribourg 1848 1907 8185 33140 61433122 4891
LCR Le Chroniqueur 1854 1881 4561 18310 36415330 1884
LCS Le Courrier fribourgeois 1830 1830 107 426 434399 1
LES L’Essor 1906 2018 2120 10611 16813285 9783
LLE La Liberté 1871 2018 42548 749944 1673145718 196218
LLS La lutte syndicale 1906 1998 4524 25662 60856831 0
LNF Le Narrateur fribourgeois 1840 1855 977 3892 4850926 32
LSE Le Peuple, La Sentinelle 1890 1971 20183 131832 318513171 732
LSR L’Observateur 1846 1848 71 305 446839 0
LTF La Tribune de Fribourg 1905 1905 217 870 3255362 338
lunion L’Union 1860 1871 3144 12596 31052870 3
luxembourg1935 Luxembourg (1935) 1935 1940 1540 8892 22405437 9779
luxland d’Letzeburger Land 1954 2007 2772 49062 73389858 58684
luxwort Luxemburger Wort 1848 1950 30372 161219 359981930 19692
luxzeit1844 Luxemburger Zeitung 1844 1845 215 872 1265515 0
luxzeit1858 Luxemburger Zeitung - Journal de Luxembourg 1858 1859 538 2216 4119984 536
LVE Le Véridique 1831 1833 312 1320 1820362 50
MGS Der Morgenstern 1842 1843 210 860 1099996 0
NTS Neues Tagblatt aus der östlichen Schweiz 1856 1874 4356 17786 29930243 200
NZG Neue Zuger Zeitung (II) 1846 1891 3604 14901 27699105 542
NZZ Neue Zürcher Zeitung 1780 1950 112672 561444 1766374181 0
obermosel Obermosel-Zeitung 1881 1948 12563 64212 170730444 44299
OIZ Die Gewerkschaft 1901 1992 3494 18601 37740386 0
onsjongen Ons Jongen 1944 1951 139 2060 2002679 5515
SAX Journal de Saxon 1882 1884 1 4 4861 0
schmiede Schmiede 1916 1919 159 652 812278 96
SDT Solidarité 1909 2001 2805 15926 38413656 0
SGZ St.Galler Zeitung 1831 1881 11168 46042 78456303 25
SMZ SMUV-Zeitung 1902 2004 4799 45662 82009685 0
SRT Schweizerische Tag-Blätter 1798 1798 30 265 111854 0
tageblatt Escher Tageblatt 1913 1950 11338 79163 48072604 263285
VDR La Voix du Rhône 1844 1844 1 4 7240 0
VHT VHTL-Zeitung 1904 2004 3139 19754 37749239 0
volkfreu1869 Volksfreund 1890 1939 1087 4212 8062600 30
waechtersauer Der Wächter an der Sauer 1849 1869 2199 8796 14624140 8
waeschfra D’Wäschfra 1868 1884 660 2658 2189278 5366
WHD Der Wahrheitsfreund 1835 1863 1283 6257 10290086 56
ZBT Der Zugerbieter 1865 1868 155 527 704594 1

Here you can download the CSV data that were used to produce the table above.

Romanello, Matteo and Ehrmann, Maud. What's in our corpus?, Blog post, impresso, 2020 <http://impresso-project.ch/news/2020/01/23/state-corpus-january2020.html>.

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