Food and land: base camps for community building

I wrote this blog entry for Stir magazine, which has a kickstarter campaign underway to raise funds for printing offline versions of the wonderful work it does already online. Have a think about the stuff you usually fritter your money away on, petrol for the Porsche, a Lear jet flight to Monaco, private banking advice […]

What’s the point of documentary film festivals?

I’ve spent some of the past few days working with Glenn McMahon on covering the  Human Rights Watch Festival 2012 in London for visionOntv. We ended our interview series by asking HRW’s Andrea Holley on her organisation’s thinking about the hows and whys of these video fests. Are they preaching to the choir, reaching out […]

Industrial agriculture meets peasant farmers – who wins?

I’m due to interview Bettina Borgfeld for visionOntv later today to talk about Raising Resistance, a film she co-directed with David Bernet about the fight of the small farmers of South America against industrial agriculture. The subject is one close to my heart, I covered a version of it over many years while working for Reuters […]

Indy media legacy documents Genoa G8 police violence

[youtube]   Carlo Augusto Bachschmidt, director of the documentary Black Block, explains how work by independent media helped piece together the story of unprovoked Italian police violence at the G8 2001 summit meeting in Genoa. (Italian with English interpretation). His film features powerful testimonies by some of the dozens of activists who were savagely […]

Advice for independent journalists covering violent demos

[youtube] Journalist Mark Covell was beaten unconscious by Italian police during the 2001 Genoa G8 summit. He speaks here about the power of independent media and how independent journalists should buddy up, train and prepare to cover potentially violent demos so as to keep safe. He was speaking before a screening of Black Block, […]

Mimi Chakarova talks about making “The Price of Sex”

[youtube] Documentary film-maker and photojournalist Mimi Chakarova talks about her film, the Price of Sex, which screened in London this week as part of the Human Rights Watch Festival 2012. Chakarova describes how it took her four years to persuade some of the East European women who’d been sold into sex slavery to tell […]

The Price of Sex

[youtube] I’m set to interview Mimi Chakarova today, the maker of this film about the sex trafficking of East European women. It’s a tough tale about how poverty makes young women in former Soviet bloc countries vulnerable to the promises of well-paid work as waitresses abroad, only for them to be trapped into prostitution. […]