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EngageMedia on TV

By Diah Sekarwidhi

On July 7, EngageMedia broadcasted our first TV show on RuaiTV’s Channel 43 UHF in Pontianak, West Kalimantan. The episodes will run every fortnight. The schedules are available here. RuaiTV is affiliated with ASTEKI – a TV association that consisted of nine news agencies and three active local stations. Since 2011 EngageMedia has organised three basic online distribution workshops in Gurindam12 and Kendari TV.

Each episode of “Serangkai Kabar dan Cerita” will focus on a specific issue and will be produced in collaboration with an organisation specialising in that issue. We will subtitle all of the dispatches to English and Bahasa Indonesia to ensure as wide audience as possible for the work and greater awareness of the global issues.

“Serangkai Kabar dan Cerita” aims to connect active movements and campaigns, to provide them both with resources to assist them in their work. Through EngageMedia, we try to distribute them online and offline, while encouraging people to become active. “Media plus organisation” is the key here to catalysing information into action.

The program will allow people to view EngageMedia videos offline, and encourage more video activists to contribute. All works are licensed under Creative Commons as it goes with our video ‘religion’.

EngageMedia plans to continue collaborating with other local media network throughout Indonesia. The most important element in EngageMedia’s projects is to inspire communities to become active in creating a more sustainable, liveable environment and to advocate for greater social justice outcomes.  Video can play a key role in raising public awareness and educating key target audiences about a particular issue. In other cases, there is the potential for substantive changes not only on how people see the world but also to take action and be part of bigger movement.

The key for this awareness is to understand the state of the movement and how the video and outreach initiative can move it to next level. In other words, we need to be clear as to what type of outreach is most appropriate and set reasonable expectations in terms of impact. It is not reasonable to expect broad social change if there is little public awareness that a problem exists. In some cases, just getting audiences to see the video, connect with the story and better understand an issue is enough. This awareness is the first step to social change. If an issue is well‐understood, it would shift to something more concrete than simply dialogue. How then, can a video, the one that uses an alternative form of distribution (i.e. online downloads) have the kind of impact that changes minds, inspires action, and ignites social change?

Online campaign video is not enough, it must be packaged and delivered in a way that creates wider public engagement with social and environmental issues. An informed and motivated public can effect tangible and progressive change in their communities.  Although the future of video distribution depends on the online media technology, offline distro can’t be ignored, in fact these two can be fused into a hybrid media outreach as to garner broader audience for change.