By Ade Tanesia
“From this film, we recognized our own situation,” Muna Rif’Atil, a member of the Qariyah Tayibah community learning center said in comment to the film ‘Lost Identity‘. The film tells the story of young people in Salatiga, Central Java, who have lost their cultural identity in the face of rapid modernization.
Most of the participants of the Video4Change gathering in Indonesia were not able to clearly define the impact of their video, though they all had an understanding of their goals or the reasons for producing their films.
During the course of production, the creators of videos gained a lot more knowledge and grew the courage to identify sustainable ideas and actions. At the community level, the production process itself has a profound impact. Participants shared examples of how videos have become catalysts for a new sense of awareness for communities, strengthened their identities, encouraged solidarity and social movements, and have even created new communities and networks.
A point of discussion was whether videos have to spur social change. Is raising issues through the films enough or should the video makers continuously follow up actions that can taken to address the issues raised in the film? Someone asked: “Since the primary task of the video maker is to raise the issues using film as a tool, doesn’t it make it tougher for them to be responsible for the mass movement as well?”
At this stage, we went on to talk about video distribution strategies, which can open doors for actions to be taken. Social change doesn’t happen because a community has watched this or that video. The concluding agreement was that video makers should carefully map all relevant parties to be allies and targets of their film’s distribution, so that the video in their hands can become an effective tool for change.