THE STREAM
2011/10/10
By : Cynthia La Grou
THE STREAM is documentary #4 in the Compathos Film with Social Impact Director Series, as we continue to explore the intersection of social innovation with purposeful art, film and new media. New stories from the front lines, the new face of documentary, the power of emerging interactive technology -- this is THE STREAM. This exciting new eight-part series pioneers brave new models of storytelling. You will hear stories about how art and technology are transforming global communities -- from kids in India putting their slums on Google Maps and fighting polio with mobile phones, to a groundbreaking virtual Second Life community raising awareness about racist violence -- these videos put a startling fresh face on the power of stories and new media tools to drive social change.

You'll see young people from the Bronx creating a new text messaging platform for their "power poetry," stories from the Guatemalan genocide visualized as cultural data in a breathtaking online archive, and an augmented reality application for android that brings new layers of interactive information and experience to tours of sacred National Park land. This screening also includes new content about a real time interactive map project that layers news, documentary, environmental data, and community content in the Gulf Coast, a collaborative youth story platform to inform the Peace movement in the Middle East, and a mobile game raising awareness about the Iraqi refugee crisis.

The series will feature probing interviews with the some of the best documentary filmmakers working today, looking at how they are joining with visionary technologists and community leaders to create collaborative, innovative tools for change as well as broadening their reach to new audiences.

Much of the content for THE STREAM is derived from the Producers Institute for New Media Technologies at the Bay Area Video Coalition (also a Compathos partner in the series) which is spearheaded by Wendy Levy, visionary BAVC Director of Creative Programming, who will also be our guest speaker at THE STREAM World Premiere - at the HUB San Francisco on November 18.

The Institute is a MacArthur Foundation-funded new media incubator for documentary producers with the intention of developing socially relevant media projects for emerging digital platforms. Producers participate in high-level industry round tables, intense one-on-one project development with technical mentors, new media storytelling workshops, and hands-on prototyping of their ideas. The participants adapt and develop film, video, and audio content for delivery using a range of interactive formats, including but not limited to video game applications, interactive, web-based experiences, mobile streaming, multi-user communities, and new educational software. Producers may propose a range of delivery strategies, including cellphones, other hand-held devices, set-tops, Internet, portable software and more.

Collaborative partners include Google and Pentura who develop social justice map applications which geo-locate stories, and maps that capture real time texts, twitters, video, and other digital communications about human rights abuses, or environmental crimes. Also on the trail blazing radar are games for change such as Dying in Darfur, Iced, Virtual Guantanamo (Second Life), Free Rice, World Without Oil Games which make complex problem solving and urgent social issues relevant and engaging.
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