Everything Needs to Change, So Everything Can Stay the Same: Challenges to Keeping Online Video Accessible

Keeping a website online and continuously accessible to the public, whether its a human rights archive or a piece of art, is not merely a question of keeping the power switch on. Our senior archivist discusses some ways to prepare for the inevitable challenge of tech obsolescence.

An Open Source Approach to Translation

The fact that 72 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute is astonishing. And the immense amounts of footage shot and uploaded by citizens in places like Syria, Egypt and Chile reminds us that video is increasingly being used to expose human rights abuses. As more activists turn towards video for advocacy and evidentiary purposes, there is a critical need for accessible training resources that teach how to create and share videos safely, effectively and ethically.

The (Virtual) Bystander Effect: Witnessing Human Rights Abuse Online

When a video goes viral, millions of people become witnesses. Whether it is a clumsy kitten, an adorable child, or a gruesome protest, we as viewers are transported to that moment. We see everything. We hear everything. But we change nothing.

WITNESS and Storyful Announce New YouTube Channel For Human Rights

WITNESS is pleased to announce The Human Rights Channel, a new channel on YouTube. In collaboration with Storyful, the channel is a platform to tell breaking stories through the lenses of citizen journalists that will change the way we view, share and engage human rights video.

Take the Social Tech Census: A New Tool to Map the Best Digital Resources for Advocates

From the Arab Spring to Occupy, the events of 2011 highlighted the potential of new technologies for advocacy. But new tools are more likely to facilitate social impact if they’re used by people with the right training and support.

#Video4Change Weekly Digest: August 26, 2011

The weekly digest has been on an unintentional hiatus… I have been helping out on some exciting projects here including our forthcoming Video Advocacy Online Toolkit and planning some outreach for our soon-to-be published report on current challenges and opportunities for human rights video.

Saving Human Rights Video from an Online “Deadpool”

Perhaps serving as a reminder to video creators that video sharing platforms are not archival repositories for their media (nor do they claim to be), Google Video will be finally shutting down entirely next month. Starting April 29, videos hosted on Google Video will no longer be available for playback; after May 13, the videos will be removed. Google is encouraging content owners to download or migrate their videos to YouTube before the deadline.

When Can An Advocacy Video Blow-Up Children?

My colleague Chris’ post on successful advocacy videos and the failures highlights the recent 10:10 UK campaign video, which (“spoiler alert”) begins with a scene in which children are blown up when they don’t commit to take measures to reduce their carbon footprint.

Archiving Practices Strengthen Human Rights Video Online

My name is Taz Morgan. I’m a new intern at the WITNESS Media Archive and was able to attend the two-day Open Video Conference last weekend. There were a few panels dedicated to the discussion of open video specifically in relation to archives, such as the session Yvonne wrote about a few days ago.

What Does the Open Video Movement Mean For Archives?

At the WITNESS Media Archive, we collect, document, preserve, and provide access to human rights videos. Each component in this archiving endeavor contributes to the creation of reliable and authentic records in support of advocacy, prosecution of justice, truthtelling, and historical understanding.

Pump Up Your End-of-Year Fundraising Using Online Video

We’ve teamed up with See3 Communications, the interactive media and marketing experts for nonprofit and causes, for a series in how to use video creatively and effectively for fundraising online. We’re pleased to host the first post in this series, authored by See3 CEO Michael Hoffman.

Video Report on Reproductive Rights in the Philippines

The Center for Reproductive Rights released a powerful video to accompany its report Forsaken Lives: The Harmful Impact of the Philippine Criminal Abortion Ban.

Forensic Anthropology, Video, and Archives

In mid-April, an episode of NPR program “Speaking of Faith,” featuring a representative of the Argentine forensic anthropology team (EAAF) aired. The guest spoke about how recovering the remains of victims of repressive regimes leads to healing, the re-writing of history, and the prosecution of justice.

A Peek Behind the Digital Curtain – Discussing YouTube’s Take Down Policy

As my colleagues Sameer Padania, Priscila Néri and Chris Michael who worked on The Hub can attest, curating online video is difficult to say the least. While considering questions on ethics, revictimization, consent, dignity, and security, the Hub staff at WITNESS aimed to highlight relevant human rights-related video that, at times, contained disturbing or very graphic imagery (see the example of the Neda video from Iran: ‘A Woman Dies on Camera – To Post or Not to Post?’) .

Collaborative editing tools and cool collages

A quick note here on some online tools I’ve recently come across:

Kaltura – a collaborative video making tool that another colleague brought to our attention (thanks Sam). I realize this is not new to bloggers and videophiles in the know – but its relatively new to us here and we’re considering ways to use it on a project… They also have an interesting collaboration with Wikipedia. Moreover the open-source tools they offer are things that it seems more content creators (and viewers) are going to be clamoring for in the days to come including: video mixing, annotating, and ad serving.

VuVox – this is a mega-mashup tool of sorts allowing for more ‘dynamic’ content (video, animation, sound, still images- let your imagination run wild). Their new tool Collage was unveiled at We Media conference I attended about 2 weeks ago. the exciting promo text on the site reads

“Any real world location can become the launching point for a rich media story that features live media hot spots and embeddable links. A COLLAGE can be published, embedded, and syndicated into any website, blog or social networking site.”

This is still in private beta but interested parties can request to become a tester here. This tool is certainly limited to people with good broadband connections who are looking to creatively use their media, create mashups of mashups. I’m wondering if human rights bloggers could use the tool to provide context to a situation as it happens (after they’ve uploaded the video or embed a live stream of video) and again, yes this wouldn’t be those in places where lack of access to internet is a reality.

Anyone using either of these tools who would like to share your experience? Please let us know here… and thanks.