Hi there, Harry Waisbren here! I co-founded act.tv with Bob Fertik, and am asking you to join us on our adventure to further fuse great videos and activism.
This has broadly been an ardent mission of mine since I first became politically aware in the throngs of the mainstream media inspired Iraq war mania. Many of us first came together then as ‘the netroots’ out of a collective realization that the grassroots creating media to be distributed on the Internet could be a powerful form of activism in and of itself. Participating in the Occupy movement from Wisconsin to Wall Street has only bolstered my passion since as I continue to analyze the burgeoning models we are seeing intensify and change.
On the whole I consider the transition of video from television to the Internet to be a bastion of limitless potential for progressives. For the here and now we’re already seeing this game changing transition in action, if only given how Mitt Romney’s “47%” video enabled progressives to capitalize on Occupy Wall Street’s cultural impact by collectively branding him as the embodiment of the 1% through exposing his open and authentic disdain for so many of us.
But our vast public discourse remains disfigured by way of Americans consuming an average of 4+ hours of TV a day. Moreover, television as a medium is a one-way advertiser-dependent place where even if an audience member desires to use it to participate in our democracy the available options are too often lacking to say the least.
Hence, as ‘act.tv’ implies we’re striving to take the otherwise passive viewing experience and flip it on its head!
Technology is already shaking up the whole system -- as seen in how the TV business has experienced its worst year ever with projections showing that digital is set to surpass TV in total time spent while faster Internet on bigger screens has catapulted 40% of YouTube’s traffic to now come from mobile devices.
This is why we find the notion of ‘do more than watch’ to be such a powerful idea, so much so that we are rebirthing what we previously called SuperVoters.org into act.tv in order to better reflect this concept.
Taking a step back, Occupy Wall Street never would have gotten off the ground if activists didn’t make sure to capture such inspiring action on video, nor would Elizabeth Warren be a household name if her impassioned speeches weren’t caught on camera. But it takes activists like you and me to create and curate these videos to make sure that our fellow activists and the rest of the world can discover them as well.
A next generation form of political action is increasingly coming into perspective before our eyes. At act.tv we intend to explore what is possible in this arena and push the envelope of innovative ideas to best support and drive progressive activism through video.
Now that is absolutely a daunting proposition! Which is why we’d so value your participation, advice, collaboration, feedback, partnership, etc. as we proceed on this journey forward, together.