Small World News is in Libya for the third time since the revolution began. Although the revolutionary edge of the nation’s enthusiasm may have subsided, the enthusiasm itself has not. Libyans are excited to build their country, and actively looking for partners to provide assistance and mentorship. This desire led directly to the creation of our new project, a series of production bootcamps around the country. Throughout May, Louis Abelman and Brian Conley, along with Alive in Libya's Mohamed M Essul will run a series of workshops across Libya. We are excited by the broad support we have received from the Doha Centre for Media Freedom. With their support Small World News has developed a program that looks beyond training. We are using the phrase “production bootcamp” because we see each event as more than “training.” Our goal is to work side-by-side with Libyans across the country to produce a series of videos. These videos will form a campaign over the next several weeks encouraging Libyans to vote.
There is a general lack of capacity in the Libyan media to produce short, dynamic news packages quickly. Libyan news currently focuses primarily on talk shows, and studio-based news programming. By encouraging a bootcamp, on-the-job style experience, trainees will learn theory that is quickly informed by practice.
Currently there is also a huge lack of real information about the election. The day before registration began on May 1, many Libyans did not even know where to register. Others were confused about the exact purpose of registration. Furthermore, many Libyans are even unclear about when the elections should occur. Its June 19th according to our latest information, yet many still believe it is June 23rd.
The workshops will bring together a diverse group of media makers in each city. These trainees will work together in a series of production teams, conceiving a story, shooting the story, and finally assembling, all in a matter of days. We have crafted the campaign around the idea that individual Libyans are best suited to convince their fellow citizens to vote. We are attempting to blend short documentary features, telling one individual story, with energetic, get-out-the-vote style language. We hope this innovative approach will connect with average Libyans and educate them about the upcoming election.