Together, you and your camcorder can change the world.
Some of you may already be working on video projects that help address problems that the world faces today. I know that at least one of you is working on a video about teen pregnancy. Still others are editing projects concerning inner city gangs. It is a wonderful feeling to know that you are contributing in a meaningful way and helping to solve some of the ills that plague our society.
Each year I see many of the Videomaker/Panasonic video contest entries. A good number of these, attempt to shed light on local or regional issues that are otherwise ignored. I remember learning about controversial beach management practices which included moving large quantities of sand from the ocean floor onto the beaches in New Jersey. This had tremendous effects on the Eco-system. I never would have known about it, had it not been for a guy who made a video about it and entered our annual contest.
When I first began to consider the power of television, I was studying a media philosopher by the name of Marshall McLuhan. He had studied communications theory and came to some interesting conclusions about social systems. For example, in a village where people communicate primarily by word of mouth, shortages and surpluses are identified swiftly so that very few people go "without" for very long. He reasoned that human beings who witness hungry people in their village tend to help them, because they can "see" their suffering. Back in the 1970s many places on the planet were experiencing famine, but it was difficult for Americans to actually see the suffering.
Marshall McCluen wrote about a coming "global village," in which all earthlings could learn about the needs and surpluses at any given time anywhere on the earth. With millions of video cameras and hundreds of satellites circling the world, we'd all be able to witness the hunger, and we might be inspired to do something about it.
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