Preview: “Social Change, Social Media & Social Filmmaking”


Interested in learning how to raise awareness for your organization by using video? If so, the panel, “Social Change, Social Media & Social Filmmaking” presented by Dorothy Engelman, Rob Dyer, Sherien Barsoum and Meghan Warby might be of interest to you.

Presenter Dorothy Engelman, executive director of q media solutions and one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women according to the Women’s Executive Network (WXM), was gracious enough to give her input on the benefits of documentary-style online video for organizations.

When asked how video impacts the nonprofit sector and the media industry, Engelman responds, “Huge — video and our ability to share through social media connects new audiences to far broader audiences…”— “it (video) connects you to like-minded people and engages you beyond a traditional observational-journalistic view.”

Engelman explains that current technology is affordable and easy to access. She suggests purchasing a video editing software (i.e. final cut), an SLR camera (i.e. Canon 5 or 7D), a Zoom recorder, and a microphone to begin shooting. Engelman also advises people to film short movies in order to learn the craft and arrangement of a story. When asked what type of strategies a person might use to effectively produce a video, she replies, “Research, research and more research.  Then “casting,” finding the right subjects who can articulate the story is the most important ingredient.”

“Real stories are powerful forces for change—but today, a short film or even a feature length film needs an engagement strategy. Ultimately, if you want to make change you have to engage people to find their way into the story. Education and awareness are the first steps—but “transmedia storytelling” approaches also give your audience a way to engage in…”

Engelman’s panel is set to bring together an innovative set of top filmmakers, communicators, and change agents to discuss the various ways of incorporating documentary-style online video to your organization. The group will share their knowledge through tips, tools, and tactics that can best benefit organizations like non-profits.

“It (video) raises awareness, often it can be a powerful fundraising tool for an organization— it can also help NPR’s (not for profits) that are aligned with your cause…”

Overall, Engelman’s session seems like a promising panel for those seeking additional resources to promote and make awareness of a social change via video. Thus, if you want more information regarding tips for documentary-style online video, make sure to attend this panel.