Connecting the Drops
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DIY: Record and post a video in ten minutes

March 10 2011 | Culture Shifting,
by Jim

Sometimes we think things are are harder, more complicated than they really are. This hit me as I was heads down and got a ping regarding the video below. The question was "how did you do this?" (flipcam, phone, etc?). I didn't even think about what I did until I replied to the person. 1. FIND CONTENT. The single most important part of posting a video is finding decent content. I opened my ears/eyes to see a single-use plastics subject matter expert right in front of me, Angela Howe (Surfrider's our legal maven). Experts are ALL around us. My view is most people on TV aren't experts... they're personalities. I prefer experts. 2. HAVE A GOAL. Think of your audience. What does success look like for your video? I wanted a short piece which could act as an entry point for people to learn about plastics but then get progressively meatier and end up talking about our current state-wide pushes. I told Angela the questions would follow this trajectory. 3. RECORD. We walked into the lunchroom. I balanced my phone (iphone) on my coffee cup, hit record and we started talking. Five minutes later we were done. One take, no edits. Unplanned elements that happen during these kinds of videos add to the value... they increase the authentic feel. Don't try and compete with CNN, embrace the real, grassroots elements of your idea. Nothing beats simple authenticity. 4. POST. As we left the room I hit the "post to youtube" option. This is an amazing feature, you need to be on a wireless network but it's as simple as sending a text to a friend. 5. PUSH. When I got to my seat I pushed the video (by then on youtube) out to my blog, twitter, facebook, staff, board, activists, etc. Keep it simple. If you don't have an iphone (or whatever tool you need) borrow one. I'm guessing you know someone with whatever tool you need. Don't access to tools stop you from moving your idea forward. 90-something people watched it in the first few days. You may say, that's not very impressive... it's not thousands or tens of thousands. My reply would be "It's potentially 90-something more than knew this message prior." Surfrider's core strategy is engaged activism, think of this as part of a feeder system... introducing people to the issues and helping them find a place to plug in.
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