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Turning the tables: Digital Revolution interviewed by the interviewees

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Dan Biddle Dan Biddle | 14:29 UK time, Friday, 20 November 2009

Digital Revolution has spent the last few months interviewing some of the most influential, inspirational and engaged individuals on the web today, asking how the web is changing world economies, nation states, human behaviour, and levelling the media.

Only natural, then, in this connected company, that the production teams wouldn't be able to cling to the 'old-media' film maker's luxury of the camera pointing only at the documentary subject; and certainly folly to imagine that the interviewer would retain a monopoly of the questions.

Here are a few examples of these moments where the film crew and Aleks have become the subjects of their subjects' own films and, of course, put them on the web for the world to view.

1 - Tim Berners-Lee 'Ghana Aleks Krotoski: turning the tables'
The inventor of the web travelled to Ghana with the programme one team, during which he gave an interview to the team (you can find a rushes sequence of that interview here). But not before he'd had some fun of his own and put Aleks on the spot to explain her thoughts on the web and its effects on the world.


2 - The BBC visit my place for the 'Digital Revolution' documentary
The programme four team find themselves discussing camera lenses and  in the light of the camera's eye as they prepare to interview Mashable's Ben Parr.



3 - BBC's Aleks Krotoski (@aleksk) is a 'Woman of Mystery'
At the same shoot, presenter Aleks Krotoski is caught tweeting in the kitchen by her prospective interviewee, Ben Parr and faces her own moment in Ben's spotlight.


Is this a glimpse of the future of open source documentary - an infinite feedback loop of camera on camera study and interplay? The new age of the 'prosumer' and 'interviewerees'?

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Simplistical, but maybe it makes for a digitally revolutionary view as in a 360° visual and sound capture of the moment - thinks the eyes & ears of a fly on the wall. (or maybe I've indulged in a bit too much @bbcautumnwatch these past few weeks ;)

  • Comment number 2.

    Becoming the subject, as well as producer, now potentially applies to all of us; the growing ubiquity of digital cameras, now a standard on phones (and with App's that instantly upload to YouTube or Facebook) mean that all of us can help capture news, or equally be the subject of it.

    Somewhat chillingly one of the last sights Neda Soltan had as she lay dying in Iran earlier this year was of several people videoing her.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------
    ADVISORY: This link is to one of the several videos taken of Neda Soltan dying after being shot.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1f4OLbfFU0&feature=related

    I thought a fair bit about whether or not to post the above link.
    Not so long ago that would have been considered a 'snuff' video, yet it also ended up on the BBC news-site.
    Perhaps another result of the Web is that is lowers the threshold of what is acceptable to watch? For some people that threshold will be much lower than others. e.g. The war in former Yugoslavia produced videos of atrocities (Srebrenica), taken by the soldiers that committed them.
    http://www.pbs.org/frontlineworld/blog/2005/07/srebrenica_the_1.html

    Given that people may not realise at the time they're being videoed (particularly in a surveillance society) it may result in higher levels of paranoia.

    People may also may also have develop different public and private personas, depending on context and comfort levels, as Alek's demonstrates in her two interviews.

    Those that will be most successful at negotiating a life lived partly in public (Facebook, YouTube etc) may be those that are best skilled at doing this.

  • Comment number 3.

    'Becoming the subject, as well as producer, now potentially applies to all of us; the growing ubiquity of digital cameras, now a standard on phones (and with App's that instantly upload to YouTube or Facebook) mean that all of us can help capture news, or equally be the subject of it.'

    When I wrote 'news'; it may only be 'news' to a small group of people, but it is public exposure that may not be voluntary or welcomed. It may hang around on the Web for a long time, potentially accessible to anyone that does a name search, or evidence used by gossipers.

 

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