Center for New Words; WGBH Forum Network; Media and Movements
Really I think for it you know I knew for years I wanted her in his life. I really realize why that is a story. The reason it's really on you know a lot of friends and I just want to be sharing with you is going to be known for his money. You know with all of your this and really inspired word and I respect that and I'm really looking for hearing me say it's a learning feeling you know. Earlier this morning I was and it was the first
part is really trying to run from these orders. Things were reinvigorated and raising urgency to do it. And I'm legal there is an we rule here. And she's talking you know in it in order in the mission as long as you know going to art where there are people who are targeting ration rates you who live in this town and your story was and I SEE YOU IN SYRIA THE
REAL hard part right. Think of your mind and I just think that this is this place where we can take things easy or schools really use you know. Just as it does me good as you have just really wishes or alternate other or progressive or traditional refuses I would see the Iraq action word Iraq actually with rights and every action and fast in proof of the war or or and this is
her new name. Now really examine the writer is she really were in a hard cover announces a war against the war and is is having a chance to. Go to the seas with him the Winter Soldier hearings. These sisters these returning soldiers from Iraq and coming home and some other stories shared as much from the mission overseas. And then and his men are soldiers and you know and the country and I are Story story
accident North Korea actual raft and all of the information and the culture and and that is really where the first one was a hundred single only only. See this is why she's in that shot and she is here and it was in action and it is massive and it is you know or an alternate or are those are the stories. The words are no more
resist the current real world and its movements. Were analysts who can talk about some of the words and really give you examples of you do is you. I have some specifics that when you ask questions so you know I was thinking about why girls always say that. All right well now I am really not from a teleprompter or from your planet you been reading how much the New York Times has been giving me a hard time for using a teleprompter as a smart person she told us they got that out there
is my hand. And there were things on sort of raising my mind I am sure you use lies and you know I live a sort of happiness. Look at something the size me sour. When I was really matters the the remains of Louis are no more real and hence the original Power-One. When I say I mean man who's still for the most part time I work with media that is still largely man but we talk about new media tools those tools are available to to everyone. So many people of color you low income individuals and the homeless creating it and will buy the messages today nearly get your house own guys and with them we can promote social change. The internet has reached our new media tools and technologies have changed how we communicate with each other and the world. Multimedia late nights while social networks Facebook and
Twitter writ writ Reddit my spaces makes sense. I've had numerous accidents M.S. in every one of us the affordability is reached someone touches art. When one's mind changes housing director position is our new idea. TC on form any time anywhere. So how do we harness new media as rules and nowadays promote social change. Well we should just use the tools we should understand that in our things and harming others with the arguments and signs that mean that words and letters announce know where we went to make them work better. So sure some will change I believe requires warrants in the machinery and machine maker worm from outside and with the man to have deep lasting social change is not just enough to know how to post or why using WordPress or the larger social activists must get
behind a code that makes Wordpress blog. We must work with him and be the ones within our house will dance. And through technology the moon harnessed the tools. We must now have this now anyway. How do you bring them down and rebuilt and make them better. So I'm asking for more about the gap in hiring to get our database of ministration programming skills. It's not just enough to say I live so we will get a gun in India about women's going young using developers do to be commie developers providers and their injuries. I'm saying let's do that and promote little technology companies that are working to make this an hour we were coming to I am. I really wanna see more females. You know racism on the coming generations social networking tool developers here and here we are the mighty center of technology romance and heartbreak were
Facebook those bastard made still guys get credit recognition for these tools reducing with this word change. So we must harms the tools that are most social change if you have seen that is when it's made that way because I think. In order there are always gender issues to be considered when you're talking about social change and we must continue to identifying areas where we need to occur around the world as a nation forwards. I think about what we are which is over the last years Ronald Cummings you know the president when many of us that was small but then use the tools of new media I think in large part helped make a man from service rendered to campaign by real
lesson harnessing me and souls which reshape grassroots organizing during our foundation board by Howard Dean and media down all around me it's routine use social networking to extend the regions where society main supporters and contributors and weighs even among them most of them then fully grasp at the beginning of my Iraq Obama background. BROWNBACK the social networking features some sites like baseball in my space that mound the east visitors feel like real answers in history with the powers that change. My right forearm at our house essentially a social network Coxeter candidate it was designed it uses an almost unlimited rate over a ways to routes as a campaign. You can register to vote or storage on any route with the lists are your friends in and you sign a
bill and use it's no use it as a matter of fact I say that I try to answer this right son and at the right campaign about the source I mean because now I can see the absolute minimum. It's an act that throughout Britain and you get out. You could narrow their abounds with generous stay current or another one of those roles Obama's irony with pictures of it was blue. You can click and make on but to see who the bombers are spread the word to voters across the country right here at this time. You can get a text message updates on your own actions from a dozen Obama being ringtones. Jerry Hall is cured rouse and yes we can. We make now we are rating on the scale of a presidential campaign that there are clear rises from the one we just witnessed and deliver to the White House and I think we should embrace those
lessons and implement them and our own historic campaigns. So how do we know our own ears hear expression to marginalize voices were heard Wednesday almost anyone can greet me you knew the bounds of lotion options available. Unfortunately every new shiny tools gives us the license to play without rational cause. So really they're not silly. When his music was on you to make you wonder what are people doing with their time and why do we do we start to watch the madness in both our minds. People are watching listening and reading their map reading and landed combination audiences for new media hours. Your outlet murder channel so dorm in our ways to those literally volunteer army ends and they are your cell phone presence. Digital cameras we are these
tools right now making possible fortune selling dream. They are willing to allow things one does not happen twice. Liz ionize I don't see them as Chinese boys. Oh I get it but I think that these things do have power as you get how it was careless and sour so your mono smartphone allows you to do nearly anything that you dish on me our. Let us connect to an audience an Internet connection you are in there was the most from powerful publishing tools to come along. It's good bird the movable type activities entry in the US the air hand reaches on was me to wipe my ass or house or walls. More than 220 people. The fact is you nor any of the traditional media outlets early once reached a moment you can reach those here about your issue or is it. And frankly one of the shortcomings of traditionally Knightly is that they try to be art these are
people and I was Mills who I've read up against those additional me isn't worked in that role so. So we are agreeing on how I feel about that and also people are saying we were the only mutant additional media but I am done now. That's the right way to go. And anyway so now all me is finding out the ironies as no one are people who are they while what they're interested in taking cable TV for example is assassins come Larson from its practices I get my age where it says music lovers that you know TV is forcing us. Yes and it's just the S.A. and see people enjoy cooking at home. And so I'm hearing we can lecture the smaller channels and now online our micro channels as I see them because that's where our size really our channels are hearing to more personalized answers because there are so many of them
so many entries and we're sensing. The total number of websites were alive hundred eighty two million and counting one two net practice UK based and services company. So number was 100 million by Asinus movie Realty Track at the rate people create an abandoned them and move the log is just out there the other posts and you you upload it to a man walks in. But the point is you have utility and I'm president to reach people with your message. Isn't that what media is all about reaching the masses and mass media has come to the marginalize it was a message for his personal and organizational West's eyes. My hands and I was there is a book that came out four years ago I play sharp.
Here Comes Everybody. Our organizing organizations while I was reading it in your own ways he wrote about resonate with me. One says that the cost of finding like minded people has been more and more important the professional eyes made up a bunch of man in the NEWSROOM know how to get to this site was newsworthy and leave all that out for a week and she can go you know it's the same with my science. It's an engine out former Sun-Times columnist Esther Cepeda. As we made yourself into a one woman media outlet through her blog called 600 words she writes about immigration and race issues how XIX gender when I was director communications for travel and if one rocket and this you're right about organizations were she got a story just a single special Charlesworth and I get her weekly
counseling or else we in a recent email she banged through your brother boards since Friday. Stand outside now people now enjoy it. Enjoy 600 words and 7000 that day at the New York Times and that's an Arab mass audience. But googling around 7000 weaknesses were used these days. Certainly newspapers yet. Now when our mind goes out of thousands its writers have to effect change. She got an audition for women's newsletter. That's his site and she says it's a really good singer. I mean I wasn't on. Bass He's an example of why one person can do that solo to me you know.
Practitioner getting bashed Harrison for letters in this letter reaches close to 10 pounds trying to scare me. The Foundation uses that based brothers act as it were from Army lawyers issues such as actors on funding from odious programs events to trunk taking on this additional year for their sexes oversights in conjunction with the site and weekly E-News he uses Facebook to promote the word and as many organizations today carefully and consistently consistent. Please call and make the email list to expand their reach and promoters channels in your organization. They should be prominently places you are out and any printed material existence out driving force your hand on the keep coming back to the gym. It's worded most of the time to angry New Orleans updated lawyer has adding a few well added time iOS your site. You're dealing with people's attention so you must be against
them creating your own media outlets you control the message and tell the story. Watch most of my career has been spent were pretty traditional all the hours making the newspapers and we know it's happening to them these days and have to be in the industry runs 20 years it was clearly came out and was taken as a correction. Many companies weren't ready for it but I was so I was there that all the rain and see the new emerging picture as arms unity and creativity in creating smaller leaner media outlets aren't unique does not always mean money was found out and it does it take time. Once she was changing and I want to embrace that change and summer I'm afraid my voice. It's running sound to me here that will be coming out of touch with the masses. A friend I wanted to cover and followed through campaigning for amounts of you know
I'm good at our own site black and white is great and it was his idea for me because unlike his wife we. But anyway we have to run a car and they campaign I sense a time during the summer visiting the cities that the campaign was was trying to write by the people who gave you them. Created some video supplied sites and also talked about some of my experiences. Member of Camp Obama. So this is what we created me Arnie and he was relevant or interesting because now that back with a big name and how it laid our over on some front I praise will say I don't think so. We found I was in a place around the house. So now I'm
new to create their own media almost you know water requires access to. Brain rest remaining mute to a rational occupation and we are going to trade geographically limited area their Internet access the pound o yours. Nutrients. Mix it up and explore our communications I will lead you forwards who camera computers all German can go anywhere. I'm reading real time rich people profit low and I'm going to quote again from here comes every everybody. Everyone is a media outlets a music break and common consciousness without the traditional press Whately and answers ation of the limitations inherent and having a small number just feel press outlets means media is no longer time and who owns the machinery is the Mars Asia resources was a long time coming but it is here now with their own
music. Good afternoon my me is Barbara Becnel and I'm going to tell you a little bit about myself because a lot of what I'm going to share with you are experiences that I actually have at tactics that I actually try and something to share with you some of what I've learned some of what I've done and some of what has worked and maybe not worked at times. Again my name is Barbara Bignell and I was involved in an international campaign that barred the international media. A little more than three years ago when we were trying to save the life of Stanley Tookie Williams Crips co-founder death row prisoner
and Nobel Peace Prize nominee for having written actually 10 books that for children and young adults to convince them not to join gangs. And so I was involved in an international media campaign to try to save his life. We did not succeed in saving his life. We did succeed in growing our movement and we have. I managed through a series of events and circumstances to stop executions at least temporarily in the state of California but so what I want to share is why I want some of that. The real tough work that we face and getting the media to to take on and to cover our issues. The issue that I'm
referring to the really involved in our criminal justice reform and abolishing the death penalty and I attended a conference maybe three months after Stanley Tookie Williams was executed. And it was a conference put on by major organizations to support human rights who are against the death penalty. And one of them said one of one of these folks that in this conference that. The fact the stadiums not only stands with his execution was botched was not a big deal because nobody cares about the last 10 minutes in the life of a death row inmate. And I say that to say that we have had to become sort of really you know
we had become really to think outside the box to get the kind of coverage and and to create our own ways of getting our story out there because even some of the people within our movement that have issues with some aspects of the work that we do and the issues that we advocate for so mainstream society and the mainstream media is exceptionally Ive I ran into exceptional exceptional bias so. I want to just tell you about some of what I learned and give you some examples of how we did what we did and how we prevailed in some instances despite the bias. And I'm giving you an example of bias.
During again during the five to two to try to get clemency for Stan one of the spokes person for the prison would come out every day and stand in front of the prison and there he would hold a press conference almost every day and he would say. That stand still look gang banging Crip and quote he shot calling from his death row cell as we speak which was of course a third because part of the process in executing someone is the last days of his or her life. They are watched 24 hours a day stripped down to their underwear and nothing's allowed in their cells other than for a few minutes to brush their teeth and they have to give the toothbrush back. So to tell the media he had a or croup
criminal enterprise going on was was just ridiculous. However the press coverage and in reporting it is as fact I had documents that from the prison that showed that he in fact the prison had commended him for more than a decade. Of not being involved with gangs signed by an associate deputy warden I photocopy that. He handed that out to everybody and not one bit of it showed up on the news that night. Just the spoke person. Continuing to say what was untrue and what I had proved was untrue and I remember the next day I yelled at them because they deserved it. And. And what in the lesson in art learned was that you have to really find push push back
cart and you have to really understand that sometimes institutions carry more weight than individuals. We have the truth on our side but they had a 10 billion dollar California institution on their side and the press went into 2 billion dollar institution and the untruth versus the individual and the no moneyed individual in the truth. So. So one of the lessons that I learned from there is there. And it goes back to what Cassandra said or Cassandra said. And that is you know I don't I no longer depend on the mainstream media to get the story told. And and so what does that mean so one of the things that we do when we put on events we have people actually write stories about our
events or our protester or our workshop or whatever it is we've done and then we use the Internet. And for a viral email marketing to get our story out to hundreds and thousands of people and it's and it's and it and it actually really works has I begin to get emails from folks from all over the country saying hey you did blah blah blah last weekend there's So they've actually gotten it that way. And so that's good. The other thing we do is we videotape our own events. And so then we create our own news stories. And what we have. And what I've done is I've even taken the material that I have videotaped over the years and I created a documentary. About a year ago there has gone on the wind awards and just
released a couple of few weeks ago in DVD format we're going to show you just the three minute trailer in a moment but it just came from you know what the media wanted the story for about Stanley Tookie. But they wanted the story in a way that promoted who he wasn't as opposed to who it was and and so I determined and and they would not allow me to tell the truth. It just simply would not allow And they said as much. Well you know if you can put you know quite a bit of negativity in there like a whole lot of unbiased amount we're not we're just not going to heiresses this of was that we won't consider that we won't consider that. An unbiased story. That's the irony of it. The San Francisco Chronicle wrote two stories. Side by side and one was supposed to
be. This is the for Stanley Tookie Williams story and this is that again Stanley Tookie Williams story well before Stanley Tookie Williams story was about 65 to 75 percent against him with just those little tiny little piece that was for him and again anti Stanley Tookie Williams story had literally one sentence one sentence and the whole story. That was support of the mind. Well these were two anti Stanley Tookie Williams stories and I of course got on the phone and called the reporter and said What's this. You know don't at least don't pretend that it was a pro and a con it was just too cancerous. And she says Well I think even get that 25 or 30 percent positive then. For my editor let me get that in I had to do all of that negativity just to get that little bit in So. So my point is I learned that I was not going to be able to tell the story as I move the story
to be unless I did it myself. And the good news is that you know I've been sort of reinforced with the righteousness of that choice by the fact that the movie we need we put in and film festivals throughout the net actually the world it is screened in and harbor Germany it's screened in Toronto. We want awards and now our distributor picked it up with Canadian descript distributor and so it now is in the medium format. So so that's the other thing to just decide and it's not and believe you me I did not have a lot of money this was credit cards and you know so it's not only you could do that because you have money. No I don't. And but so we didn't assume so didn't cost a lot of money and yet we succeeded. Another thing that you can do where you can sort of co-op. The
mainstream media is if you can develop some relationships with the mainstream media every now and then you can get the kind of coverage that you should get and I'm going to give you an example back to what I told you when I first started talking about that prison spokes person who was not telling the truth. Every day during that during as we were moving toward the execution. Well about a year year and a half later it turns out that The New Yorker magazine wanted to do a story about San Quentin's death row in San Quentin has the biggest death row in the nation Texas kills the most people. But California has the biggest as death row almost 700 people. So we wanted to do the story and they wanted to use this this prison spokes person as sort of the vehicle to tell the story of what death row and working in the prison and so somebody
who was a media person who I had developed a good relationship with and more. Knew that this guy was working on this story and told this guy he needed to to talk to me. And so while the story wasn't about me it was about this the spokes person because I had that media relationship. I think all of the documents that I couldn't get anybody to look at when I was in the common C5 I got those documents and so to this to this guy and the story that he had intended to write which would have been a glowing piece on this guy became an indictment it was because I was so happy. So this story just really told told us that. I mean ANY told on him cell thinking that it wasn't going to turn out the way he thought it would be a glorious piece and it was quite something.
So and it provided been indications because in there this this attorney I mean this some reporter presents that everything that was being said about Sam Tookie Williams in fact was not true. And this is and it was the whole plan a media smear planned by the prison and the state attorney general's office a whole year before the execution they were literally working on this and and this guy tells it and then. The author's name is his last name was friend with his first name with a come back meet Tad Friend. Like having a friend is the July one of the July issues of The New Yorker magazine. When was that that wasn't probably not last year the year before so probably 2007. So so that and I'm going to tell you one of the strategies so that's a strategy that I've used which is to
sort of insinuate myself into stories. Mainstream media stories to try to get the kind of coverage that if I tried initiated I couldn't get which I tried and didn't get. But there was some karma finally. Another thing is to create events that forward your cause. But that have enough of a spin to them that they can be linked or tie to other current events that the mainstream media isn't interested in. So an example is on December 13 which is a three year which was a three year anniversary of Stan's execution. We were on a big public hearing from death row prisoners who we served to share with the human rights abuses and violations were
happening with them on death row. Over 500 people showed us it was standing room only. Only it was an amazing event. What's coming out of it now is a report so we're going to have a report with actual surveys we manage to get surveys into San Quentin. You know that somebody there was that was beyond my ability there was clearly somebody some some something somewhere that was working in our favor because they can actually throw the mail away and the prisoners never get it. But the the survey's got in there and we sent a self addressed stamped envelope and they actually got out and and the people were in tears it was a moving moving to the day for folks who just would never have assumed that the kinds of human rights abuses and violations are just routinely happening in our prisons. So now what does that have to do with the point that I made and that is this
right now this is newsworthy because Would we hear in the news we hear about Guantanamo Bay and the U.S. We don't torture people we don't violate their rights and now we're going to be able to do so. Look for us. Look you know no that that's me. When you hear that we're going to try to get on on Rachel Maddow now on this and you haven't because we're going to have a report that shows. Well yes we do. One way the rights of we don't have to go our own way to Guantanamo Bay to see evidence that it's happening right here in the U.S. and. So that's an an example. These are issues that we care about this is the social justice movement that we're trying to galvanize and move forward. This is criminal justice reform that we want to get on the radar especially at this. It's not a moment of change. And but we're going to sort of tie it to a topical issue and so
that we get our our issue in the sort of the side side or maybe not the front door with the side or mainstream media and I think we have a really good shot at getting some national publicity on this report which should be ready by some time next month. So just be on the lookout. And why don't we just show one all night and then our alums will take questions with just you seeing the three minute trailer of the movie. You know I use credit cards and spin and gum chewing gum to make to make happen. Now we stay true to our story and didn't compromise. We'll be able to hear it. They're.
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OK so I'm I'm an activist a writer and I direct a program called the public square and basically I'll tell you a little bit more about the public square but I just wanted to say this is my second year and we also are presenting your I am. I'm not really sure how we discovered the conference. I know that you know for us we really felt like we were entering new territory because we didn't really see ourselves necessarily as like media social media activists or necessarily within that community. Once we started talking. Our work and thinking about our work. We were like wait a minute. We as activists are often often often talking about the media reading the media consuming the media. But not only that we have actually had to utilize the media in huge ways to get across the various messages that we have wanted to get across. We work together and Liliana to anti-death penalty
issues. So as we were talking you know it occurred to us that you know one of the initial things that she did to sort of get the voice of stand to get Williams out to the public somebody who was behind bars and on death row in California was to set up a website. You got to see that word and it was through that that that and it was through that website that she was able to get out a Peace Protocol. And so many other things I had worked with a lot of family members and prisoners and we had set up blogs for prisoners about their cases and we had also set up blogs for The only members loved ones to write about the condition of their loved ones. And so we were like women and then we're always always always trying to you know are holding press conferences sending out. Press releases to the media about the various actions and so on that we're doing and also writing for different
media outlets and one of the organizations that we were involved with. We also were very active in putting out a newsletter quarterly newsletter so just like well wait a minute this isn't actually foreign territory for us. This is exactly where we should be. So we came last year and discussed exactly that sort of how we had used new media technologies to further the movement. And we're back here again and tried to sort of broaden the scope of what we wanted to go online to talk about. I guess I just wanted to say or word about that mean stream media because I feel like yes yes yes we should seize new media technologies and sort of claim that as. Our own that I also feel like you know as Bart was saying you know every day when we were fighting for Stan's life I mean it's like you know the mainstream news outlet outlets were covering what was actually happening leading up to to the execution. And you know we absolutely try to take
advantage of that as much as possible in terms of holding like a people's hearing on the steps of the Capitol so on a silver that we knew that the media would cover. So I feel like you know even as we're engaging in utilizing new media technologies I don't think that we can afford to ignore what is actually happening in the in the mainstream media in any way whatsoever and that we can be savvy about trying to influence the mainstream media and answered some ways if you like we just don't have a choice. I mean you know people are reading the New York Times people are watching FOX News people are looking at ABC saw and so forth. Reading the Chicago Tribune So I feel like we have to actually pay attention to that to pay attention to that too and try to hold the mainstream media the corporate media accountable when we can. So just just to say that I guess. I've been thinking a lot about you know
how we can sort of build our various social justice movements and how we can really create a more participatory democracy. I work I run a little program called the public square out of Chicago it's a program of the Illinois Humanities Council. And basically it's we create spaces for public conversations about different social justice related issues. And we really try to bridge our activism and academia and really look at intersections of different social issues. And in the past year we created a series called Looking for democracy in 0 8 and really to try to tap into and provide outlets for you know. All the people who are becoming really energized by the presidential campaign. I think that you know last year we saw you know the highest voter turnout
ever. We saw a lot more participation so whatever you might think about electoral politics and I'm not one who you know sees that as the be all end all in any way. But I do see that you know we saw more engagement than we had in many many years. And I know that even among youth pursuit for so many years and I never I I never really liked when people did this but I feel like within activist circles there is always a lot of talk about how people are apathetic and apathy apathy kind of reign you know. And especially among youth that people just you know young people just didn't care. And I feel like last year you know that mist was completely exploded and it was pretty clear that actually people did care. People did want to make a change. And it's time I thought because that's kind of freaking out. Thank you.
Ok ok ok ok so basically I think that what I was saying is that we saw a lot of engagement and we faster than this of you know apathy kind of exploded in a big way. And so I think that it's so basically at Publix where what we did was we created a program called Looking for democracy and 0 8 and beyond to create programs that spoke to any during the election or during the election season. It took up various issues so right after Super Tuesday for example last year we had Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were both still in the running. We had a roundtable on race gender and the elections. And then later on in the year we had another roundtable called one person one vote question mark you know questioning sort of the electoral college
system in the United States but not just that actually featuring speakers and people. Could talk about alternatives. So for example I don't know if people have heard about this concept called dropping out of college but it's basically dropping out of Electoral College so states are putting forth legislation where if your state votes that way and actually it's interesting because New Jersey in one way or two for the two states that have passed this legislation and both are states that well Illinois still has a moratorium on the death penalty and New Jersey abolish the death penalty. So it's very interesting me too different for me to see that parallel but essentially is that enough states you know passes legislation that your state would not have to vote the way of the Electoral College but could vote you know whichever way the popular vote went. So I guess it's a way of like you know. It's avoiding the Constitution and getting around the Constitution
when it's not democratic. But in any case I just thought it was you know we were really trying to put out there here are people really trying to think of ways to create a more participatory democracy and this is how they're doing as the ones that sort it is a critique ing the Electoral College system and what actually exists positing different alternatives. So I wanted to share with you one project that we did that was really really sucks. Successful beyond our expectations really and that was the looking for democracy short film contests totally new territory for me being you know somebody who has ever made films or anything like that. And we partnered with other people who are. And we had this contest for a camp contest inviting people in. That means to you at Arlington for my
sister and I are as they are in their experimental music and her film makers meet their rock that nation for democracy in creative places new Marmaris and very much that laugh and democracy where you are my life more than yours and neither are the whores. So we put this out there and it was limited to Illinois and we didn't actually get as much as many submissions as we've won it. I think it was just between like 30 and 40 submissions. But the winning submissions were so so powerful. And then what we were able to do was we curator program curated
a program featuring the top the winning films and had all the filmmakers come and participate in a discussion about making our own media. Hope in America. Question mark making our own media and then invited an award winning an award winning filmmaker to be part of that conversation. And we provided flip camera as you know the first as prizes. Things like consultation with this Ward Porton Quinn whose award winning film maker of hoop dreams to be at the service. The winners and things like that and it just ended up being a really really great program that not only you know talked about democracy in a creative way but I felt like it really helped to generate creativity and thinking about democracy. So that's one. You know they are mine. So if you go to the public square or
you can find all this stuff just go in the looking for democracy short film contests. So I want to share that with folks and then also share another program that we have. We do want to get you going to do we want to do it again. So although we were not I'm not sure exactly what the frame is going to be for. But can you go to Cafe Society. OK so the other series that we have is called Cafe Society and basically what this is weekly although we're going to be moving to bi weekly discussions in different places around the city so it's like the Chicago Cultural Center. We have a location that runs barbershop which is an African-American Barbershop on Fridays a five o'clock they hold these discussions facilitated discussions.
And then a few cafes in the Chicago area. So every week we actually frame a topic and we provide links to different articles about that topic. This coming week it's going to be incredibly shrinking newspaper business and actually Cassandra writes some of these topics for us as well so that the topic we send it on our Friday and then we have the discussions the phone and we include links to different articles and we really try to find different viewpoints different perspectives. And you know sometimes we will have links to more traditional outlets but we also try to really promote alternative media outlets and really see this as a way of promoting media literacy getting strangers talking to one another about issues that and you know when people go to these things you really find yourself having an intimate conversation with somebody you
would never ever otherwise be in conversation with just because I feel like we tend to surround ourselves with people who are interested in the same things that we are and who generally think. Similar to how we think right. I think anyway. Maybe other people don't do that. I think that tends to be the tendency and so at these cafe discussions it just brings different kinds of people together so we're actually going to be watching the summer do it yourself Cafe Society toolkit because we get a lot of requests to have these discussions in different places and that's going to be fine and it's going to be a downloadable tool kit that anybody can take and then continue to use these discuss the topics that we create and generate. It's going to move to a bi leap. Bi weekly timeframe but use those topics and have your own discussions. So we're really trying to
encourage like different groups because they feel like you know as an activist and I know that I have said this many many times that sort of talk is cheap and it's about action but I also feel like as an activist you know we really have an obligation to to be not only inform but to really engage with one another about all of our various issues and really want to talk to one another to learn from one another and to understand each other and understand our our own issues so I feel like there's not a lot of that going on. And the public sphere tries to create the spaces to do that. I guess those are the things I wanted to share. But also I guess to just end with the notion that you know again as opposed to sort of talk being cheap I think that we really see dialoging as a form of work and izing And it's funny because I've had
to defend that a lot. I pulled some people together for a reading group because one of the things that are and I are working on is really to try to bridge the movements for criminal justice reform and street peace. And so in Chicago where I'm from I try to pull some people together I did put some people together for a small reading group to read this little book called preventing violence and immediately the moral of all what are we doing after this. And what we're going to do and I was just like well I don't really know an answer to that we can decide what we want to do but I also just want to make a case for coming together to actually talk about these ideas because you know our actions are going to be informed by our ideas. And we don't have enough. We need to make the time and space in our lives and our brains to think. I think about what we think and to rethink things so. I will say that and then just leave you I guess with the question because
I feel like all of us are probably involved in you know events either going to events putting on our own events and things like that and that's what I do. But I feel like one of the things that we face as a challenge is sort of how do we move beyond a one night stand in terms of the event. You know you put out a greater a lot of people come to it feel you know inspired by it and learn a lot from that. But how do you sir to sustain and build community out of that or build our movements out of that. And so that's a question that I feel like I struggle with all the time in terms of a lot of the different things that I've been doing and then I've also to put out the question what does need to be rethought. I do think that you know we're in a new era of struggle I guess in a sense that we see a lot of different struggles happening and going on so you know what. What is it that needs to be rethought now that it's rid of post-Bush.
We have you know a new president we just made history. But we also have I think a written new and newly energized and gauge kind of public I guess and in many ways so what does that mean for us. Put that out there. Thank you. I'm Andalusia now and I work with Free Speech Radio News and also the Prometheus Radio Project. And I was just wondering I was just looking at the program right now and just you know the title got democracy media and movement and maybe thinking more of success stories if anyone could share a success story really they feel that either independent media or feel like the story that you shared you know was obviously not a success story but on a larger scale but it was a success story of getting you know a different perspective in corporate media but one where really a campaign was won or you know something through media support or me advocacy or good stories.
Yeah. There is a person on Concorde is there room cam guru who's alive today because Xander and he and DNA is it part of a case that had not it has to be a key to the half hours three hours away from being executed and his DNA in the case man up it has been an arm in the organization then hours and will be on an island for some time and can't nobody really wants to be sued your citizen can name and I can be interested in the fact that here was someone on death row who actually had DNA as part of this case and that he'd been tested and he was
scheduled to be executed and he said it was and is it has that he and only on the date of execution two and three are forms to be executed and all of the obit is bar floozie said Bart was he still alive. That is the prosecution to not test for anyone found salamis was integrate it into just the right DNA and so now we've got all these set of issues but at least he is a lot of fun and he is so that was where that instance and actually even in bars as Marthe at least. There was a dinner we were sung for him this is round and one of our members who are his daughter who are our
current historian said your piece was unfair and that we were literally said it was good service on balance that something and said whoa why are our living our life and all the issues raised in our little communities leader that rewarded. We've run out of those three is we then and there he is. He didn't live down so low. So every now and we will also have an exam afterward arm and thankfully are two people that are going to you know it is kind of we're getting out after an hour. For prisoners whose lives he really is a grassroots mobilization tonight aren't we all over Texas who never heard enough. That's really as it was during that era. Definitely the executed if it weren't for
grassroots activism mobilization and that was very very media or a phrase has this. If you do that you run a horrible things. This isn't and isn't and he should not excuse. And that is actually the activity we are trying to do which is incredibly Ari's which basically says let's broaden the net for dozens for people who actually committed crimes you rather are very directly off things in order to remember all the things and learn just recently in a story. Is this route forums and this is what he says is going around Europe and former prisoners as well. Former guards who
were it will be new in this rabbit engine is racing runs on this and hear and read. And she told me that the winning in common actually was that one of the bridges from one that article on Alternet was written by name and I don't read yours and everybody who covers up you wrote it in with a heart of this is heard or is Iran because they write that he is now or never I tell you and he was mentioning peace and his former prisoners on Alternet and hindsight is hard and this is during the story isn't really Mr Hockey is this insane who are Asian and he is having you know the story just blew my mind.
You know truth is always rather lively as anyone's reading AlterNet extraordinary things that tell her story and you will work as a very good citizen first. It's also much these other victory that most people I think you know that meet international with the Republic Doors and windows workers who actually shut down their factory. Interact with me was a huge victory and had me you know did make international headlines and I think that because of the power of the new media it's also now possible for us to learn lessons from this victory in ways that maybe we didn't actually before. Actually last night we were just watching a friend of ours. BILL MOYERS who's executive director of drugs and justice and was very involved with the Republic Doors and windows. The injury I struggle and I think that now it is possible for people
to ask that you to him and then he continues you know conversations are about the victories and also be very intentional about thinking what can we learn from this victory for our own particular struggles. Because I feel like it doesn't just apply to other workers and similar factories that it's you know I'm sure that there are lessons there that can apply to all and I think that it's up to us to you know. You know force the question. And to think about it. And I guess that is one thing when I pose the question and answer my own question that I posed about like you know building community and sustainability and all the rest because I do think that new media can provide us those opportunities too so that after you go home right from an event or from a demonstration or whatever you can communicate with one another online and I know that that's some of this the things that we've been talking about how we could do better in terms of integrating those
technologies so that people can continue conversations and relationships. I know we'll be discussing new media throughout the end of the session. Oh oh I'm sorry. OK. I know throughout the session we can talk about new media and how it's changing things. Apart from Obama being the president and the kind of history it made and how proud I made all of us I think it's also a special time because a lot of youth that have been previously disaffected or people who I consider activists a dirty word really have kind of open their eyes and said wow we have a president who through grassroots community organizing got himself elected and we we as people can make change. So my question is how can we maximize the amount support we're getting now from regular people who weren't previously activists who are now saying you know I want to be involved. I want to do something. How can we use new media to just to take this special time now and reward them and
get them going to them. I think that's like a question that is grappling with. I mean you know this is credible and. He capitalized and I haven't quite figured you know it. If there is you know you made an effort to capture and it is just like a smaller scale you capture the people the names of people going your camera to show up to or something you've done you know that you know make sure you know who they are easier to get that information call and invite them to share. If you're next to nothing whatever is it you're doing just this NG. You know that it is there in our home safely and because it really is a real emergency here and I think that you know the person is going to ask Are you saying
we need you now for this reason if you notice me. You know I think that that's the way that's the way I dressed up well it's activism because I had somebody from the start as you know gave me responsibility is something to do you look as part of something bigger you know and I think you know that you need a way that made them feel very sleepy and you know and there are they believe you know security here. Well just candidate Obama when he came out this is an example. He was the first president meet this week my first internet chat as president and one of them like really knowing and questions I came and I turned all participated so he's still heartsick as I said I can feel about these was a service that serves
science that's why group but people are sending out now sending out messages about how they can organize and what they can do out there is a lot there are a lot of messages from his campaign that we name that people are still carrying to were using and I'm just saying that that's an example of why he be transferred to other hangs. Something like this is National It is huge and so it's going to drum up people's attention was it Hammer Time. That means free media they're still covering like really was the first 500 days of their presidency. So because Mouat media coverage traditional corporate media covers and he's getting I think is campaign are still amusing me us reach out to people to drum grassroots support where there are million people last weekend when he was there and that's really huge and I mean that can be scaled down to smaller
campaigns or his neighbors things like that people can use our you can create a website or some sort of site for your neighborhood to get people to fight crime or bring people together. In my neighborhood we've been trying for the same herrings. I live near a high school and they want to install lines on the scene. So I'm just an email campaign with and the community has helped people to raise money to pay for our boy you see and also we have on this thing through the city the bills council it was a number of votes so there you know you have to go out my emails and get away people using our words. My brother has a channels of ways to reach people you can rescale down. Look at the big picture. What can one can use that for your smaller words and you can reach all more people are really interested in
connecting that's the real key to it. What issues can you get people to connect get people to care about the issues and keep them engaged with with hands had information. Good things can be good and to be in our regime. Because my understanding them still and their readers. Wall Street movie The Wire or reading glasses and cancer of the whole and and cashmere scars. Standing there is straight from the. And you know it is just under no circumstance would to the loophole she was it
brought would IMO that the two pose standing side by side in fact I know one of the things that sort of coming out the moment one of the things coming out of their homes were the cross and they we both came together. And his movement is beginning to emerge emerge due to the merging of the soul is auctioning the criminal justice reform social justice movement and the. Is the
movie man is the anti-war movement is the Army of the men and the two that don't meet. We are now saying OK hold on we need this it is on their history where we need to plan for. Where are your issues that essentially we will leave it to others issues we have and this is on our own. But that is as really letters the beings are promised and I'm sure there are other issues so there is a movement on foot both in California to began that process. Urging the justice movement so that we can be cool. What I said is we. We're
not going to go to war even by just being he will decide to do it. We have doormen and made him do what we do and not his bogus law. Believing that because we hope it to be what happened and to do them more so than to than we deserve is out. I do not address can be located about or contact aesthete as you legacy then as an academic to Estee them legacy down then sell. At least one of the ends in me and ours because we are on the books and wrong and then merging the social justice and were really serious about it. So you're out.
Last question and make it quick in response to what Cassandra was talking about before about technology and activists people who actually are shaping the tools. It made me think of questions about for instance open source technology like technology that's free to people that doesn't necessarily cost money. And also anyone can change vs. proprietary software that's like Microsoft it's like they sell it to you. They tell you what you can do with it. And they tell you that you can't change it. Also thinking about things like social networking like Facebook we are terms of service. They own stuff like my space where Also if you put lots of organizations in my space you put your information in there. I think Murdoch owns my space so I just wanted to ask you guys with all this new media tools we can do so much. But what do you think organizations and movements have to think about in terms of the tools they're using and who
owns their information and who owns the tools themselves. And I don't need to be aware of this testes because right now some of this is freely available to all of us and you know that people are already making money off that right in terms of all those advertisements around and you don't want to eat salmon or whenever and lose weight and all those crazy thing that you easier time you want it to be a smoke or more a spray. So I mean I need to think about those types of questions and claim that these are tools that we should have ownership over and not allow others to do so I think that those are fights that I know some of them are currently taking place but there is also going to be another future fight that we're going to need to engage in. But I don't want to see terms. You know what should we do to lazy people. I mean a lot more invasions and various individuals not people here because this is you know conferences
that you find a lot of resistance still to late baseball or new media technologies and organizations and whether it works with our institutions and I think that you know part of it is actually you know with then your institutions or in the world as Asians and sometimes it is just a fear that because people don't know and are familiar with and still know and says you know still used as being open to making use of these technologies but not just that not as individuals but pushing organizations and institutions that work with them for to also embrace these alternatives. Because a lot of times you know institutions and organizations will have more resources to reach more people and so we can get them using these kinds of technologies. It's all about her you know it's very easy to scan and have you know on a screen and be able to communicate with people that way and who are you know conferences like Tuck muffins and maybe part of our more every day and things like that so I just want to say that the other thing in terms of
you know really exploring and connecting various movements for social justice and exploring. And it being the idea is to be very intentional and deliberate about exploring the intersections of different social justice issues. And so asking ourselves What does war have to do with war. Warming or warming rays or what is the environment and saving the environment how to deal with you know world peace is actually what it does. You know how I'm here right now. Actually today being out in Chicago there is a new initiative that I involved with called our Marian actually changing. I'm leading every time and we need people come together and discuss different issues and we have a health care act is talking alongside the ladies fighting for marriage equality. And we ask that his visit at least speak to one. What are the parallels they see in your struggles. And what are you know things these
two to look at those transit intersections deliberately and share one thing else with the rounds that really are still likely. Yes they're meeting in Chicago right now but we're also having a gathering on his side in Chicago that you know all of you to come to that is going to do just that and try to understand the political moment that were there and you know what is fair for all of us. I really think concretely about how we can work together. And you know work for Change concert to the criminal justice system where the death penalty were easier for me when I heard about how we can actually work together. So things first staying legal.
- Center for New Words
- WGBH Forum Network
- Media and Movements
- Contributing Organization
- WGBH (Boston, Massachusetts)
- AAPB ID
- Alice Kim, Barbara Becnel, Liliana Segura, and Cassandra West describe how media tools and technologies can be harnessed for social change. They also look at what can be learned from the recent US presidential campaign to reshape grassroots organizing.Special thanks to Cambridge Community Television for producing and contributing this video.
- Literature & Philosophy; Culture & Identity
- Media type
- Moving Image
Speaker2: Kim, Alice
- AAPB Contributor Holdings
Identifier: 0ac623b03d1aef8d7f8d08fdc45beaf17e625bc9 (ArtesiaDAM UOI_ID)
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- Chicago: “Center for New Words; WGBH Forum Network; Media and Movements,” 2009-03-28, WGBH, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed February 26, 2024, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-15-1z41r6n33w.
- MLA: “Center for New Words; WGBH Forum Network; Media and Movements.” 2009-03-28. WGBH, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. February 26, 2024. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-15-1z41r6n33w>.
- APA: Center for New Words; WGBH Forum Network; Media and Movements. Boston, MA: WGBH, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-15-1z41r6n33w