THE REVOLUTION WILL BE YOUTUBE’D

As anyone who follows my YouTube Channel or PRVideo.TV blog knows, I am a big proponent of technology, specifically film and video, and what it can do socially and culturally to inspire and elevate people. As much fun as it is to record your night out on the town, or you blowing out birthday candles, film allows us to capture history or moments that can have incredible effects on a society or a country. Who doesn’t remember the JFK assassination Zapruder film? Or the Berlin Wall falling? Or even film clips from Vietnam on the nightly news? The great thing about new technology is that almost everyone with a cell phone or flip cam is now a videographer ready to capture that moment in history.  The last month has been an especially interesting time in the world, and amateur videographers were there capturing it all. I wanted to highlight a few of the best amateur videos of late.

JAPANESE TSUNAMI

This first person account is impossible to stop watching. It was filmed in the Miyagi Prefecture in the city of Kesennuma, which has 74,000 residents. The footage makes you feel like you are right there as you see the first little trickles of water until it is an out of control flood of liquid transporting cars, trucks, and even houses past the camera person. The brilliance of this video is you start running through your options in your mind: “Can I get to higher land?” “Would a boat help?” And other questions we hope we never have to answer. The video makes excellent use of zooming and showing the different options and safety routes the filmmaker has.

EGYPT
Not all of these amateur videos have to be death defying and sensational to capture the attention of the world. This video, “Juju’s Message to Mubarak” is a simple 50-second video of an 8-year-old Saudi girl’s message to President Mubarak. The simplicity of how the youngster conveys a very complicated subject is inspiring. In an earlier date and time that memory might have only been remembered by the little girl’s family, but with digital video technology the whole world was able to watch, eventually leading to the resignation of Mubarak!

LIBYA
As revolution spread throughout the Middle East it reached Libya and violence hit a crescendo. The country’s leader, Muammar Gaddafi, instilled a media blackout and people turned to modern technology to get the truth out. This gruesome and graphic cell phone video shows a protest being fired on and at least 14 Libyan demonstrators being killed. Wow! If a picture says a thousand words, a video like this says about a million. Seeing other protesters carrying their wounded comrades to safety really shakes you from your world of Starbucks making your coffee wrong or too much traffic. Videos like these have real world consequences too with the United States announcing “Operation Odysey Dawn” to help liberate the Libyan people.

Well folks, these are the amateur digital videos that have reminded me again of how far we have come technology wise. As much as I love shooting in a studio with perfect lighting and hi-def cameras, it goes to show you that something as simple as a cell phone or flip cam can help bring about change and revolution. Exciting stuff. Don’t forget to check out my “Flip Camera Tips”. You don’t want to be fumbling with it if you happen to stumble onto history…or history stumbles onto you!

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