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Liveblogging WAM! 2009: Cynthia Lopez, P.O.V conducts opening keynote

jpozners Icon Posted by Jennifer L Pozner

March 28th, 2009

Cynthia Lopez, vice president of documentary for P.O.V, is WAM!2009’s opening keynoter.

I listened to but didn’t liveblog the wonderful opening remarks from Jaclyn Friedman or Irene Villisonor (sp), and listened but wasn’t able to liveblog the beginning of the Cynthia Lopez’s remarks. But WAM! will eventually have all the sessions’ full video available, so do check out the beginning of her speech. It’s worth it.

NOTE: I cannot type nearly as quickly as Cynthia speaks, so forgive my very partial transcript and abbreviated notes.

I’m starting this partial transcript after a brief video about POV’s films.

One of the questions I want to tackle - how do we use the media I showed you to tackle tough issues in our society

the heartbeat of american society
topics from:
life of white supremicist
mormons in utah
three mothers who lost sons to police brutality
stories about G&L adoption
family crises
health care
living wages
political corruption
murders in Juarez, Mexico
Iraq war
Peru
like all good cinema, documentaries should take you on a journey, make you ask questions

Film “MADE IN LA” follows three Latina women in LA’s garment factories as they wage a three year battle against clothing retailer Forever 21, to get to the bargaining table.

POV as i said before, we’re not just a broadcaster. we create extensive public awareness campaigns.

the goals shared by the directors of the film & POV was to capture the attention of labor, policy makers, economists, to affect discourse - 35 screenings in 33 cities.

next week, working with capital hill to screen for policy makers

film = five years
outreach campaign for film = 3 years

used film as educational tool to cahnge labor practices at sweatshops

dual strategy to garner enligh and spanish language press

flm screened at NAHJ conference

in end: 7,000 media placements
179 print articles
10 TV news programs, including univeision, CNN, fox news
robust web campaign

continuing to work to ensure that rights of imigrants are respected

potential for public seervive media to affect [policy]

what’s the role of women in television today? i’m not an expert… i reviewed all the research i had at my disposal and i read reports i never had a chance to read. and i tried to answer the question that instead of where we were working, i found where we were NOT working. generally speaking media that matters report features all guests on sunday morning nws shows, men outnumber women four to one. american spciety of newspaper editors: in 2008, approx. 37% women work in newsrooms.

radio, boxed in study at san diego state u., found that approx 22.7% in US work in radio

stats were daunting to me.

much more research online - center for new words has rich research

finally, role of omen in entertainment in primetime TV

reality is, we’re up against mainstream TV to try to get that exposure. where do women fare? neilsen reports for 2007, looking at primetime schedule, 2007 - 2008 - women were represented in entertainment at an average of 43%. well, women over 40 or older comprise less ta10% of representation in TV. yet we’re larger demograhic in terms of spending potential.

if every single person in this room wants to work together to

for 1st time ever our five major public service orgs headed by women
– Patricia Harrison, pres & ceo of CPB, wrote A Seat at the Table, an Insider’s Guide for Women Leaders
– Paula Kerger, PBS
– [another woman] pres NPR
– [another woman] pres ITVS
– [another woman] pres American Public Television, the syndicated arm of public TV

as they work together on what should be a public service media agenda

public TV and radio may decline by [huge] percent

myths, how people perceive public service TV, esp PBS
many believe that w/porliferation of cable, that PBS isn’t must trusted source. but after reserch, public trusts PBS #1 trusted source (roeper poll)

#2 - myth - nobody watches PBS, why does it matter?
we need to understand about PBS’s reach and the potential for public service media
potential reach is 110,000,000 on average.
our average rating is [1.3 ??]

if you look at PBS being able to reach 111million, second to that is discovery channel w/96 million, HBO at 31 million

third myth: PBS has fewer documentaries than other cable channels.

840 documentaries
76% of those documentaries included content from indy producers

i pose that research that when we get a doc like made in la, what does it mean w/in the context of larger media

made in la went on to win an emmy. its broadcast reached 1.1 millino viewers
and thousands of people who supported the cause
overwhelming ly comunity engagement dept conducted screenings
98% of viewers learned soething new about undocumented workers in America
the garment workers, outsiders were finally let to the inside - to the people who form public opiin/policy in the ocuntry

whether you’re an outsider, or an insider w/heart in right place, our kjob is to keep info flowing so democracy can thrive here

living in most psychizophrenic time - i get and up feling hopeful, things can really change, and by the end of the day,
filled w/so much hope and despair at the same time. we electied 1st black president. by other hand, worst economy since 1930s.

our challenge today and in future is to resolve insider/outsider dynamic

to a filmmaker and activist, trying to get their story on POV, that makes me an insider.

to a journalist who i’m stalking day and night to try and get attention for a folm/cause, i’m an outsider

the differences don’t matter. what matters is what we can do every day strategically to improve how we live in america

Teusdays at 10pm on PBS

1st show of season, New Muslim Cool

QUESTIONS:

I asked a question about censorship/funding - years ago I organized, through FAIR, a feminist coalition on public broadcasting re. marginalization of women and feminism in public affairs content, and they said “we ran a film about elizabeth cady stanton, what’s your problem” oil company can fund an environmental program, McDonalds a nutrition program, Astrea can’t fund an LGBT program. Transparency? and what can we who support the great work you do at POV, to get more of tht kind of content?

diverse voices project
filmmaker has never had a national broadcast
we have a project to take a film from inception to broadcast
80 - 100K toward the production
on our website there’s a section that says “for producers” - how to get on to POV

read cover stories in Current magazine

I tried to take down Q&A but am losing stamina and gaining that pain in my wrists… so I’m hoping a full transcript and video becomes available.

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