13 July 2005

Stories from 13 July 2005

Desde el Congreso

  13 July 2005

Chilean senator Fernando Flores blogs directly from Congress where he and others are debating future changes to the Chilean constitution [es]. One commenter congratulates the “cyber-senator” for keeping the people in touch with the politicians.

Tropical Storm Emily

  13 July 2005

Taran Rampersad is keeping tabs on Tropical Storm Emily with great links to other Caribbean bloggers and pocasters.

Another Irani Online

Unfortunately, the blog Another Irani Online has been forced to temporarily shut down the comments because of repeated and continual abuse by a commentor. Hopefully the comments will come back online soon.

Arroyo Scandal

  13 July 2005

The Sassy Lawyer has an excellent analysis of the latest developments in the vote-counting scandal engulfing Philippine President Gloria Arroyo.


  13 July 2005

Reacting to the London bombings, Pakistani blogger Zuffar makes the often-overlooked (or perhaps often-ignored?) point that “a tolerant, moderate Muslim feels as threatened by these as any one not Muslim – or indeed anyone under attack.”

Ukraine Visa Update

Blog de Connard tries to sort through whether or not US citizens need visas to visit Ukraine. See, some government sources say that they do, and some government sources say that they don't…

Bob sweettalking farmers

  13 July 2005

The Zimbabwean Pundit is reporting that the Zimbabwean government is holding quiet talks with white farmers to return the land that the government seized several years ago. This, of course, raises the question of what to do with the war veterans who've settled on those farms…

A note for users behind ISP firewalls

  13 July 2005

Our friend Isaac Mao lets us know that the https://globalvoicesonline.org domain name may not be accessible for our users within China. Our address at Harvard – http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/globalvoices appears to work within China, and we encourage anyone who is having difficulty accessing our site to try both domain names – both...

Atlantic City Rough Cuts: Youth Video Blogging for Community Development

  13 July 2005

Olivia CaldwellYesterday I spent a wonderful day working with a team of nearly a dozen teachers from MLK Elementary School in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The school is located in a low-income, high-crime community, just blocks from the affluence of the local casino district; approximately 95% of the school population comes from African American and Latino households working in service jobs for the casino industry. They're in the third year of a NJ Department of Education grant to use technology to improve student literacy, particularly in the context of exploring causes of bullying and neighborhood violence. Now in its third year, the project is expanding to student video production, which is why I've come here for a couple of days. I spent the morning introducing the teachers to various documentary production basics, such as the roles of different team members (editors, researchers, producers, etc), a typical documentary production timeline and the mechanics of documentary storytelling. The group kept me on my toes, peppering me with questions all morning. After lunch, we began brainstorming how the project would unfold over the course of the year. Rather than having students create their documentaries and call it a day, we're going to incorporate video blogging as a key tool in the learning process. The teachers will manage two video blogs, tentatively called Atlantic City Rough Cuts and Atlantic City Final Cuts. The Rough Cuts video blog will be used to premiere student works-in-progress - "rough cuts" of documentaries that need to be critiqued. They'll post them on the video blog as a way of seeking feedback from the public, particularly video bloggers from around the world. The students will then examine these suggestions, decide what's appropriate, and revise the videos, reposting them as necessary to the rough cuts blog. Eventually, when the videos are ready for prime time, they'll be posted to the Atlantic City Final Cuts video blog, for people who simply want to experience the final product. As far as I know, this will be one of the very first times anywhere in the world that video blogging is integrated into a public school curriculum, let alone an elementary school curriculum. The entire process of documentary production, from concept development to scriptwriting to editing, will be used as a way to meet state standards regarding proficiency in reading and writing. And if all goes well, we'll end up with a sizable collection of video shorts representing a diverse cross-section of life here in Atlantic City. And while Atlantic City may not seem like a very "global" place in terms of the goals of this website, I think it's a microcosm of the challenges that ethnic minorities often face here in the United States. Plagued by poverty, violence and limited job prospects, the community is striving to find opportunities among its obstacles, and improve local prosperity for all residents -- a situation that can be seen in so many parts of the world. In honor of yesterday's marathon training session, I've cobbled together a five-minute video blog of what we accomplished. Please excuse the really crummy narration quality - I forgot my headset mic and had to use my laptop's internal mic while its fan was whizzing away. -andy

Atlantic City Rough Cuts

Video of today's documentary and video blogging workshop at Martin Luther King Jr Elementary School in Atlantic City.