Community Media/MARAA/Projects/CMC CVU/History
Potential for setting up a community video, mobile centre in Bangalore
Minutes of the Meeting
Ram introduced the concept and discussed the need for such a centre in Bangalore. Given the recent events and happenings, we proposed to set up a video centre along with innovative use of other technological devices to accomplish the following:
a)To reclaim media space for a diverse presentation of communities and individuals b)Share and express views, opinions, stories, and their lives in the city c)Create a freely accessible and locally available media platform that can be distributed through different channels
Ram also talked about unavailability of using community radio because of politics of spectrum allocation. So it was in this context, that video and mobile phones seemed like good options, but things that needed to be discussed were: means of production, kind of content, defining the community, values of censorship and management.
Siddharth Chadha made a presentation including some examples of existing models like historical Fogo Process and Indian examples like Meri Awaz, Drishti, Insight Media etc. He elaborated on how community video medium was different from filmmaking in that the process employed participative shooting, community editing or street screening as a means to ensure community members’ perspectives.
The main points/questions in the presentation were:
Origins of Participative Video
Identifying need for such a centre in Bangalore and elaborating its objective Ex: - Documenting process of change, tool for policymakers
Model or Non-model approach
Defining the community
Content distribution – potential of cable in the light of spreading of DTH and satellite networks, opposition or confluence with mainstream media Budgets, Feasibility and Sustainability
Working models: To seek funding, or to work on self sustenance like through specific project funds, or to get community donation models to sustain ex: - screening fee etc.
arranged as content flow and not as per chronology of discussion
Shruti: CED has been trying to get community members come in and make their films. One could utilize existing content and also some of their experiences, resources, space etc
Deepa: Usually in these community video centres, there is a prioritization in the content, and usually “development” related content lands up at the top of the list. We need to research existing models in terms of process, experiences and media literacy of producers, reporters and volunteers, and to analyse objective/agenda of these units, and also to analyse the number of films produced, and on which topic they were made, and how have these films changed the people who made them, whether these films reflected all aspects of life in the community, or only a select few ideas or expressions were presented. In mid-80s, a crash course workshop was done, where video was not just “technical skills” but also a media and visual political literacy by analyzing the aesthetic and production of the image itself. She also talked of examples of the result of this workshop, i.e. video letters in Pakistan and video magazines in Sri Lanka
Srividya: Sought clarification on the kind of content that the center would facilitate in producing. Pro-development and issues/governance highlights, or community expression and cultural in tone.
Deepak spoke about resolving polarities between approaches of viewing content as either development or expression.
Lata: Instead of development related content, the idea should be to work towards deepening [understanding ideologies and practices of] democracy. Problem solving is not the only kind of content, but we should work with the notion of difference. It was important to explore current paradigms/ models of hierarchy to understand existing practices of democracy.
A crucial comment was to clarify the thrust of this proposed centre? -Alternative discourse to mainstream/emerging content/existent narratives/fact reporting - To provide community an accessible platform, i.e. the mere act of enabling an expression.
Ayisha Abraham: Example of WhyCity TV (also called Rustle TV), Shaina Anand’s work (in context of World Information City) in Shivajinagar which was a two week long initiative that included making consistent films/videos with and for the local community (Russell market), distributed through cable. Also it was good to note that a lot of students landed up in an attempt to learn skills of video. Aisha further stated how, during this exercise, histories of little known places in Bangalore were documented, ex- a day in Elgin Theatre, one of the oldest theatres in Bangalore. Not only do such initiatives create different perspectives about the city, but it also encourages people across class in watching and producing content. Another example of localized content and disseminating through public media (like TV, through local cable networks) was Suroor TV. This initiative was a response to have content in “Bangalore Urdu” not represented amongst other “Urdu in media efforts/endeavors”, culturally or otherwise. Local efforts which were responsible for Suroor TV; and this context localized linguistic programming also leads to alternate content. All of this led to the next logical step of examining a proposed editorial board that would oversee content and possibly review/dialogue with community interfaces/members/representatives when they sought the center’s resources.
Community Radio management structures were shared
While discussing concepts of editorial board, Lata spoke about some examples from USA, like Democracy Now, Free Speech News etc.
Other thought threads of concern were about scenarios like:- if the center were open to any “community” force, what would it do if a fundamentalist group wanted to work with the centre? We cannot afford to restrict ourselves because of a future hypothetical event, but work with a strong set of principles. More doubts, concerns: “Open networking” is not all that it is made out to be. Ex of Wikipedia where hidden revisions are now possible
Finally we concluded that a philosophy/set of principles/manifesto of this centre needs to be developed prior to setting up. This could help determine form, structure, location, kinds of content and channels of distribution
Vinay spoke about the fact that there is no concept of “a community” in Bangalore, because of its diversity, and cosmopolitan character. He proposed a model where there could be many centres, where each centre would work with like minded people and disseminate its content in that space. So a loose network of like minded people/resources working on different topics/categories seemed a likely model. (Vinay also discussed some not formalized models where the NGO he worked with believed in ultimately having community producers but was going through intermediate steps of regulated developmental tone productions)
Ekta gave the example of community radio wherein policy defines community by geography, and we could go by this criterion of defining community for the moment.
Ayisha spoke of contemporizing content and process design, suggesting a curatorial model. She felt that subjective histories (based content) need to find their space in the centre.
Participation Resource Center Try searching 'Participatory Video'
Insight Share Insight is a UK/France based organisation pioneering the use of Participatory Video as a tool for empowering individuals and communities.
The Education Video Center in New York is geared toward participatory video for teenagers and has helped a few groups in India, including Slum Jagattu in Bangalore.
Founded at April 2006, Kampung Halaman is a non-profit organization that fosters the use of audio visual medium through popular-community based programs, particularly targeting youth in pursuing the transformation towards a better society.
Background Kampung Halaman believe that Youth should become the most important member of community in this world that became a key of success of regeneration process.
But, Contemporary process of social change is not only influenced by the distribution and exchange of goods/money and the transfer of people, but also by the exchange of images and imagination brokered by media, particularly by audiovisual media such as film and television.
Facts in Indonesia, youth are member of community that mostly affected by film and television today. TV shows and films produced in ‘other’ places and by ‘other’ people who have their own agenda (particularly, economic agenda), also often blur and encourage them to build dreams that are not realistic, distancing them from their actual environment, effacing their sensitivity and attachment to the community and in the end rendering them POWERLESS
Mission Youth members involved in Kampung Halaman’s Program are expected to be able to identify the problems they are facing, understand their position as agents of change, and identify “social capital” owned by the community in the area where they live so that they can initiate some action to improve the conditions of their community (kampung halaman)
Programs I. YOUTH MEDIA COMMUNITY LAB In every community lab, kampung halaman has works for 2 years to support and facilitate the youth group to strengthen their role in the community . Our activities with youth group in communities are: 1. Participatory Research + Video Making 2. Participatory Video Screening & Disscussion 3. Local Media Center 4. Local Media Creative Bussiness 5. Monitoring and Training for Local Youth Leaders
In Youth Media Community Lab, we,ve facilitated different communities since 2006, and they are: 1. Taruna Reka at Karangploso Village, Piyungan-Bantul, Yogyakarta 2. SOCA Tasik Youth Media Center, Tasikmalaya, West Java 3. Mitra Aksi Media Center Network, Jambi, Sumatera 4. Art & Tradition Youth Communities : Tembi-Bantul, Ponorogo, Bali
VIDEO COMMUNITY DATABASE & NETWORK Videobox | DVD + Catalog | selected community videos from different communities. VideoBooth | Mobile Community Video Digitalizing | For Public and University’s Libraries DENGAR! | monthly community video screening and discussion at local communities PV FORUM | Yearly Networking Meeting for community videos activists/institutions Indonesian Youth Media Camp | yearly community media training for youth leaders in communities
Founders Cicilia Maharani, Dian Herdiany, Elanvito, Zamzam Fauzannafi, M Abduh Azis.
Board Of Advisors Roem Topatimasang, Prof. Yunita W. WInarto, Maria Hartiningsih, Nuranto, M. Abduh Azis.
Chairman Eko Harsoselanto
Executives Dian Herdiany | Executive Director Elanvito | Office & Finance Manager Zamzam Fauzannafi + Abu Juniarenta| Youth Media Community Lab Cicilia Maharani| Video Community Network + Database Coordinator Aprilia Dwi Arianti | Program Secretary Lila Imeldasari | Website Coordinator
Supporters The Ford Foundation, UNICEF, British Council, Samsung Digitall Hope
Resources of CV
Things to do
- Compile existing models of Community video initiatives in the country
- Document talks happening in the city for content
- Compile a list of resources in terms of training modules, technical requirements for the centre, demonstrate curatorial processes
- Documentation of various processes employed in community media centres
It was decided that the group will meet again on April 4th, Saturday, where the primary focus will be discussion/presentations on processes in community media. Geetanjali (better known as Geetu ) said that process and product cannot be isolated from each other, so therefore people who have expertise in certain areas, need to start compiling these things, and start work on it. Media:Example.ogg
Tentative Agenda for 4th April meeting
- Presentation of vision & model of community video centre - Maraa team
- Sharing of community media content creation process - Deepa (not confirmed)
- Community video - a curatorial model and its possibilities - Ayisha (not confirmed)
- Models of management and ownership (in the context of community radio) and challenges faced - Ram (maraa)
- Plans ahead - division in to smaller working groups and allocation of specific roles - researching past work done in Bangalore, researching equipment, getting resources, collecting existing content, etc.