From:   Rachel Lears <>
Sent time:   Monday, November 14, 2011 8:45:09 PM
To:   Global Revolution Media <>
Subject:   [GlobalRevolutionMedia] Re: documentary working group mtg plans

Hi everyone,

I had been planning to write a message to the group about this as

well. For those of you that don't know me, I've been involved with OWS

since the first week but only with the media group since a couple of

weeks ago. I'm a documentary filmmaker, like many of us are, and after

doing some independent media work on the movement I wanted to make

sure my time, skills and equipment were forwarding the collective

goals of the movement through participation in the media group, rather

than concentrating on independent work or joining parallel collectives

(like the 99% group- more on that in a minute). Like Lulu and some

others, it took me a while to locate the media group and get to the

right meetings, but I am really happy to be here now and committed to

working hard collaboratively to make quality video content for ows.


A few things to add to this thread:

- The proposal was approved on Saturday, not Thursday. I don't know

why it's not in the notes. It would be great to hear over email, or in

person at tomorrow's meeting, from some of the people who were there

and supported this idea.

- The main concern raised on Saturday was the issue of immediate needs

like getting short form pieces out quickly—a valid concern and the

same one that seems to be the main one coming up here. In general, on

Saturday, people seemed to feel that working on a long form piece

simultaneously did not have to mean that important resources would be

taken away from these immediate projects. Everyone who expressed

interest in working on a long form doc also expressed commitment to

providing labor and time for other, more pressing projects as well,

including short form content and surveillance of the park. It seemed

to me like the idea was to look for all possible ways to make the work

dovetail, so that all effort put into the long form doc would add to

rather than take away from the work of the group as a whole. How this

process actually works out over time depends upon everyone's

willingness to listen to each other, to put in the long hours needed

to get all this work done, and to recruit other people to join the

group and participate fully to help with our general shorthandedness.

-On the issue of dividing the media group, someone (I believe it was

David? please correct me if I am wrong) mentioned that there are

already subgroups in media and other working groups, and it doesn't

signify a division within the broader group if the subgroups report

back, continue to participate in other group activities, and remain

open to participation by anyone in the larger group.

-If I remember right, the main points that came up about the relevance

or importance of a long form doc were 1) it is likely that long form

pieces will be what people want to watch some years from now; 2) other

groups are making long form pieces, so we should too. These are

debatable, of course, but enough people seemed to feel like making a

long form documentary was a good idea, and that a subgroup was the

best way to do it, that the proposal passed (for the subgroup, not

Lulu's specific documentary proposal, which is still open to revision

of course).

-The event at 7.30 on tuesday, that Lulu mentioned, is this:

It is a screening/ discussion held at Union Docs in Williamsburg by a

group creating what they call "99 %: The Occupy Wall Street

Collaborative Film":

This project has been written up in the New York Times:


A few weeks ago I was invited to join this group by a friend who is

involved. Personally, I am reluctant to get involved in anything that

bills itself as collaborative but lists directors-- I was concerned

that the process might be more crowd sourcing than consensus. Since

getting more involved with the media working group, I've decided that

I personally want to devote my time and resources here rather than

there, but I still want to go to this event to see what they are up

to. Maybe it is possible for one to be involved in both; maybe ethical

conflicts could arise-- I won't really have a clear opinion till I

learn more about their process and plans, which I was planning to

report back to the group on. I'm sure some of you already know about

this project (is anyone involved?), but I would imagine that many

people in the media group, whether they want to work on long form docs

or not, would be interested to know more about this sort of thing.


Given that there are concerns coming up on this issue, I think it

makes more sense for the majority of people who are interested in

forming a long form documentary subgroup to stay at the media group

meeting Tuesday, and discuss the issue with everyone. I will plan on

going to the Union Docs event alone, or maybe with a couple of other

people, and report back Thursday (if there is time for a meeting given

all the events going on that many of us will be shooting probably)

and/ or on this list.


I also like John’s idea of starting each meeting with a discussion of



solidarity and all the best,



On Nov 14, 6:20 pm, wrote:

> I think that Lauri brings up some solid points. Thank you, Lauri.


> Our efforts need to be focused on being on the ground and getting out our message now to counteract what is being delivered by less than objective voices and actively document.


> I think a long form narrative is something that should be done, a valid effort. But, just not now.


> We should concentrate on continuing to build the media working group. We are not yet the efficient, producing giant that we can be with such collective talent and soon to be resources. In truth, we haven't produced as much as everyone has hoped and I know that there is a strong desire among members to get moving on projects that we can put up as soon as possible. Media needs a strong voice. It is our job to tell the story and to tell it as it happens. We need everyone.


> Building this group has been the result of tireless hours discussing and trying to implement process and structure. The result has been some outstanding & successful movement and, unfortunately, meeting fatigue. Let's face it, our meetings (on top of the GA & Spokes) are long and often not satisfying to all present. To start another meeting will further divide our group who are already meeting phobic.


> May I suggest that rather than creating a sub-group, we all consider John's proposal to start each meeting with report backs and project proposals. This way we are concentrating on what media needs to be done at every meeting.


> Another suggestion... Maybe we can delay the long term project, or dividing efforts, in the interest of establishing a working group that is producing and distributing an abundance of thoughtful and powerful material?


> Just my thoughts. I would love to hear more from the group as well.


> Best,

> Jaime


> On Nov 14, 2011, at 5:03 PM, Lauri Faggioni <> wrote:








> > Lulu, Thank you for writing back. I was at the meeting on Tuesday when you brought this up but unfortunately I had to work on Thursday and Saturday so I was not able to attended the meetings you are referring to. I looked through the Meeting Minutes and this was all that I found. This was on Thursdays Meeting minutes.


> > "lulu passed out a proposal for a long format doc (living document open for adaptation) and took a temperature on starting a long format sub work group. Temperature was mostly positive, at least one mixed. Agreement to look at the proposal and discuss more at sat meeting. It’s also posted on the media group google docs."


> > There is no mention of this being discussed in Saturday meeting minutes. I also did not find your proposal on the Google docs site. I may be wrong but I think this has not reached consensus yet. My personal feeling is that dividing the Media production group is not a good move. Many of us have been working to form this collective for two months now. We all are doing documentary work, whether that is in the form of short or longer format pieces. We are severely under-resourced and have a limited amount of people-power so the idea of further dividing us seems to undermine the efforts to create the collective we have worked so hard to build.


> > We are also fighting a battle against time in the Media working group on the production side. The mainstream media is pumping their own opinions about the movement at an alarming rate. In my opinion I think we need to focus on getting our message and our narrative out to as many people as possible as quickly as possible. The movement is still happening. It is living and breathing every single day. We, in Media are a part of it's well being. We are really struggling to keep up as it is. It worries me that so much effort would be taken away from the media group to focus on a narrative would not be seen until the distant future in a movie theater somewhere when we so desperately need to get this information out now.


> > This is just my 2 cents but I'm curious to know how others in the Media group feel about this.


> > L


> > On Nov 14, 2011, at 1:03 PM, lulu wrote:


> >> wanted to add an exclamation to that:

> >> Please join us!

> >> (also in case peeps didn't see the earlier email, this tuesday we're going on a field trip to BK to see the 99% collective's film. mtg at 60 wall street at 6:30pm.)

> >> -------- Original Message --------

> >> Subject: RE: [GlobalRevolutionMedia] documentary working group mtg

> >> plans

> >> From: "lulu" <>

> >> Date: Mon, November 14, 2011 12:29 pm

> >> To:


> >> Hi Lauri-


> >> The formation of the documentary workgroup has been on the media group meeting agenda for a couple meetings. The main reason is that because there is so much other business done at the media meetings, we often don't have time for discussion of projects, and a long format documentary is a major undertaking that needs a lot of time devoted to it. On thursday 11/10/11 after discussion and through the consensus process it was decided to form a documentary sub group of the media group. It was written up in the notes, which I emailed to Fix. The group is open to everyone and will work using the same consensus process the other working groups use. It will meet on Tuesdays at 8pm after the media meeting to allow for maximum participation of anyone interested.


> >> The documentary working group does not prevent anyone from continuing with any projects that they are already undertaking or want to undertake in the future. Everyone is free to keep creating. It is just a group to help those who want to work together on long format projects have a time to focus on doing so. One of the first things we will figure out is if we want to focus on one project, or several, and how to structure our work together. I encourage you to join us if you'd like.


> >> lulu


> >> -------- Original Message --------

> >> Subject: Re: [GlobalRevolutionMedia] documentary working group mtg

> >> plans

> >> From: Lauri Faggioni <>

> >> Date: Mon, November 14, 2011 11:23 am

> >> To:


> >> Hi Lulu,


> >> I'm confused. The Media working group has been making documentaries since the occupation started. What is the Documentary Working group? Is the Media group being divided?


> >> L


> >> On Nov 14, 2011, at 10:46 AM, lulu wrote:


> >>> The documentary working group is going to be meeting Tuesdays at 8pm at 60 Wall Street to make it as easy as possible for all members of the media team who are interested to participate.


> >>> This coming Tuesday, 11/15/11 is a little different though. We are going to meet at 60 Wall Street at 6:30 pm (after checking in with the beginning of the media meeting) and go see what's going on with the 99% film collective that is screening their work on the occupy movement in Brooklyn. All are welcome. Traveling via subway. Rachel has more details.


> >>> lulu