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30th August 2011
Japan earthquake survivors make their own media
UK online TV station enables Japanese citizens to speak out
This September UK-based online TV company visionOntv will be going to the heart of the tsunami zone in Japan in September to train disaster survivors to make their own media. They will also deploy their revolutionary pop-up TV studio to capture both the anguish and the hopes of people trying to piece back together their lives. They will be asking, it is 6 months on from the disaster, what do people need now?
visionOntv will be working in the stricken city of Ishinomaki. Current relief projects include the recycling of expensive fishing nets devastated by the tsunami wave.
visionOntv will also travel into the nuclear disaster area around Fukushima to record the desperation of families who have been advised not to let their children play outside. Recently, residents from the nuclear disaster site went to speak with the authorities in Tokyo, and in an angry meeting tried to give samples of their childrens' urine to officials for testing.
Richard Hering, an ex-TV investigative reporter and one of the visionOntv trainers, comments: "to go past the Japanese authorities' silence, citizen media is the solution. People don't need expensive equipment to get their story out, they just need basic skills".
visionOntv's Making News Roadshow is a unique programme of video citizen journalism, which rapidly empowers participants to make their own news reports with simple technology that they already have in their pockets, such as mobile phones. A recent Making News event in Liverpool, England created a network of citizen reporters who have since produced over 60 reports on their own TV channel. In a disaster zone such as north-eastern Japan, the programme allows the instant broadcasting of stories, information and requests for help.
To cover the Japanese survivors on-site visionOntv will use its pop-up TV studio, a revolutionary technology requiring only a laptop and webcams to make professional-looking TV-style interviews.
The project is also running citizen journalist workshops in Tokyo: for cutting-edge experimental workshop Harajuku Cafe on September 17th, and for citizen campaigners at Meiji University on September 20th.
Notes to editor:
- visionOntv is the world's largest resource of citizen video (more than 10000 films) and curates unique channels of content, such as Grassroots (UK citizen reports), PlugandPlay (the latest tech news and debate) and many others. They come out of Undercurrents (www.undercurrents.org). They have created uniquely powerful tools for people to make and distribute they own media. Recently, they have been mentoring activists in Egypt and in other Arab spring countries to help them make their stories heard
- Starting mid-September, visionOntv will upload the Japanese citizen films made by the Making News participants and all the studio shows produced in Japan.
Contact: Marc Barto 07943296845 email@example.com