Video

Video

Creating video for advocacy might mean making a high-impact, tightly edited one-minute piece made up of moving images and sound, an hour-long documentary, or a short piece of unedited footage showing a key moment. Video is versatile, need not be costly or very difficult to produce and can be distributed in many ways. This is the longest section in Message in-a-box because of the great variety of approaches to and uses of video.

Publish & distribute video

Once you've made your video you need to make sure it's seen. This section will take you through how to prepare your video for both online and offline distribution, how to license it, where you can publish it and how to distribute your video online and offline.

Production and distribution need to work hand-in-hand. The type of film you make, its length, subject matter and style, will influence how you distribute it. The type of distribution you are planning can also affect how you make your film.

Publish video

Once you've made your video you need to get it out there and make sure it's seen. This section will take you through how to prepare your video for both online and offline distribution, how to license it, where you
can publish it and how to distribute your video online and offline.

Making advocacy videos without a camera

Some of the most powerful advocacy videos that have been created in recent years have been made without a camera. Short three and four minute videos such as those made by Avaaz have reached enormous audiences around the globe through dissemination on video sharing sites such as Youtube.

Video case studies

Video to inform & educate
From documenting injustice and recording testimonies, to amplifying voices, through to short public-service announcements, these examples highlight how a wide-ranging and dynamic video can raise awareness.

Planning your video project

WITNESS is a USA-based NGO that uses video and online technologies to expose human rights violations. WITNESS aims to empower people to transform personal stories of abuse into powerful tools for justice, public engagement and policy change. Some of the information in this chapter is based on the work and experiences of WITNESS. Its Video Action Plan maps out a series of questions to consider when you are developing a plan to integrate video into human rights advocacy.

Best Practices

Video settings

Resources You'll Need

Mobile phone
Any mobile device which records video will do. Generally the newer the phone the better the lens and the chip which records the video. Some phones have simple video editing programs that allows you to add and shorten clips, add photos, text and a soundtrack. Different models of phone have varying limits on memory, maximum file size for playback and recording and resolution limits.

SIM card

Video Blogging with Wordpress

Wordpress blogs do not only support text and audio but video as well.

It is possible to create a video podcast (unfortunately sometimes called a vodcast) with a Wordpress.com account. You can do this in two different ways.

Tools for advanced users

The materials in this kit are aimed, as much as possible, at users with just getting to know about video production and distribution. If you are interested in more advanced content you might want to check out the tools listed below from the Audio/Video edition of NGO-in-a-box.

iMovie

iMovie is a popular and simple to use editing tool for Apple computers. It comes free with older Macintosh computers though you will now have to pay for it.

This guide includes easy to follow screencasts take from the Make Internet TV guide.

Screencast: Intro to iMovie

Windows Movie Maker

All versions of Windows have free access to a basic video editing program, called Windows Movie Maker (WMM). This guide will show you the basics of how to use it. If you already have access to a Windows computer check if you have it installed. 

This guide is taken from MakeInternetTV.


Screencast: Intro to Windows Movie Maker

Compressing video with iSquint

Use iSquint to compress your video. If you are preparing a video to play it over the internet may need to make your video smaller, which is known as compressing and/or transcoding.

If you are using a Mac we recommend using a freeware tool called iSquint to compress it into a smaller size. We've chosen iSquint here as it is very easy to use for basic compression.

If you are an advanced user you might want to check out FFMpegX.

VLC

Tool Logo: 
Version: 
1.0.1
Summary: 

VLC is a audio/video player that will read almost any format you throw at it, including DVDs and VCDs. It can be used to rip CDs and DVDs, encode video and connect to audio and video streams, and that's just the half of it.

License: 
GNU GPL
content_windows_installer: 
http://www.gtlib.gatech.edu/pub/videolan/vlc/1.0.1/win32/vlc-1.0.1-win32.exe
Linux installer: 
http://www.videolan.org/vlc/
content_mac_installer: 
http://www.gtlib.gatech.edu/pub/videolan/vlc/1.0.1/macosx/vlc-1.0.1.dmg
System Requirements: 
  • Windows 2000/XP/Vista
  • Mac OSX or newer
  • Installers are available for most Linux distributions and well as for numerous other operating systems
Usage Level: 
Easy
Installation Level: 
Easy
Languages: 
English, French, Spanish, German, Italian.

Finding and playing video

Now that you've put your content out there and told people about it they need to be able to find it and play it. In some cases this might simply be a matter of watching it embedded in your website, but they could also subscribe to your video podcast feed or use free software like VLC to play the videos downloaded. Elsewhere in this toolkit you can find out how to subscribe to video podcasts using Miro.

Using a Camcorder

Digital Video (DV) Camcorders generally give a much higher level of control over both picture and sound quality. However, they are usually physically larger, require footage to be digitized (whereas digital cameras record files that can be dragged and dropped), and accessories such as tapes, microphones, larger batteries, etc. can add to your load.

Despite these disadvantages, if you need the improved image and sound quality, the tradeoff is worth your while. Camcorders are great for any project that needs to look crisp on a fullscreen computer, TV, projector, or DVD.

Video security

Video is a powerful tool for rights campaigning, but it can also introduce serious risks. Before embarking on a sensitive video project, you must consider your own safety and that of your subject/s and sources. You must be alert to potential hazards and think hard about how to minimise risks to everyone involved.

Miro

Tool Logo: 
Version: 
1.2.4
Summary: 

Miro is a browser for watching videos and subscribing to vodcasts - grab webpages with video and video RSS feeds (including podcasts, video blogs, and BitTorrent feeds), and watch them full screen, one after the other. It's free and open source.

License: 
GNU GPL
content_windows_installer: 
http://ftp.osuosl.org/pub/pculture.org/miro/win/Miro_Installer.exe
Linux installer: 
http://www.getmiro.com/download/ubuntu.php
content_mac_installer: 
http://ftp.osuosl.org/pub/pculture.org/miro/osx/Miro.dmg
System Requirements: 
  • Windows 95/98/ME with DirectX 3.0 or later
  • Mac OS X 10.3+ and QuickTime 7
Usage Level: 
Easy
Installation Level: 
Easy
Languages: 
English and 44 more
Guides and Tutorials: 

BlipTV

Tool Logo: 
Version: 
-
Summary: 

Blip.tv is a video sharing service that provides content creators with free hosting, support for a variety of video formats, distribution using technologies like RSS and an opt-in advertising program with a 50/50 revenue share. If you are happy to use a commercial service Blip is probably currently your best choice.

License: 
supports open content licenses
System Requirements: 

- N.A.

Usage Level: 
Easy
Installation Level: 
Easy
Languages: 
English
Guides and Tutorials: 

Avidemux

Tool Logo: 
Version: 
2.5.0
Summary: 

Avidemux is a free video editor designed for simple cutting, filtering and encoding tasks. It supports many file types and is a great tool for converting or compressing files or making simple edits.

License: 
GNU GPL
content_windows_installer: 
http://prdownload.berlios.de/avidemux/avidemux_2.5.0_win32.exe
Linux installer: 
http://www.getdeb.net/app/Avidemux
content_mac_installer: 
http://prdownload.berlios.de/avidemux/avidemux_2.4.4_Gtk_Quartz_universal.dmg
System Requirements: 

N.A.

Usage Level: 
Easy
Installation Level: 
Easy
Languages: 
- NA-
Guides and Tutorials: 

- NA-

Documentation and Resources: 

Jubler

Tool Logo: 
Version: 
4.0
Summary: 

Jubler is a tool to edit text-based subtitles. It is mostly used as an authoring software for new subtitles or as a tool to convert, transform, correct and refine existing subtitles. The most popular subtitle formats can be used. Preview of the subtitles in realtime or in design time, spell checking, translation mode and styles editing are some of the main features.

License: 
Liberal (GNU) public licence
content_windows_installer: 
http://sourceforge.net/projects/jubler/files/Jubler%20Binary%20Releases/4.0/Jubler-4.0.exe/download
Linux installer: 
http://linux.softpedia.com/progDownload/Jubler-Download-3015.html
content_mac_installer: 
http://sourceforge.net/projects/jubler/files/Jubler%20Binary%20Releases/4.0/Jubler-4.0.dmg/download
System Requirements: 

• Latest version of JRE

• MPlayer to view subtitles

• ASpell to spell-check the subtitles

Usage Level: 
Easy
Installation Level: 
Moderate
Languages: 
English
Guides and Tutorials: 
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