Preparing to Protest: Direct Action, the Arts of Protest and Media Impact
Friday, October 18, 2013
Regina Austin, a law professor at Penn and director of the Penn Program on Documentaries & the Law
Direct action protest is performance. Its constituent elements draw on various art forms, including choreography and movement; drama, comedy, and satire; passionate oratory and poetry; music and song; memorable posters and placards; costumes and masks; and puppets. Close your eyes and iconic images and sounds of protests of the past captured in photographs, films, and videos and on soundtracks and records will readily come to mind. What makes them iconic? The first panel will focus on proven techniques for maximizing the visual effects of direct action protests.
11:00 AM-12:30 PM
Digital cameras are ubiquitous. Nearly everyone has a cell phone. It follows that nearly everyone can be a media maker capturing direct action protests as they unfold. On what aspects of a protest should the amateur focus? What kinds of images of protestors have the most impact? Are there legal restrictions on nonparticipants recording protests? Is there anything protesters can do to prevent surveillance of demonstrations by the police? Is it legal to record the police interacting with protestors? Does it make a difference if recording the police in action in public places is the subject of the protest action?
What are your experiences, thoughts, observations and theories about direct action? Can you put them into a few words or a drawing? Materials for making protest signs will be available during lunch for attendees to engage directly in the art of protest. Cameras (yours) to capture the effort will be everywhere. An open mike and a cinematographer will allow you to make a statement about the significance of your sign.
Direct action seems to be on the uptick throughout the world. What roles have digital visual technology and news media that are international in scope played in this expansion of protest? What impact do images of protest in one part of the globe have on the incidence of protest in other parts of the world?
This program has been approved for 4.0 substantive law credit hours and 1.5 ethics hours for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credits may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit should bring separate payment in the amount of $55.00 (or $30.00 for public interest attorneys) cash or check payable to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania.” If you will not be attending the entire program the fee will be $15.00 per credit hour.
Friday, November 4, 2011
Learn the steps to making an 8-minute legal advocacy video, including investigating, researching, scripting, shooting and editing, on a small budget and with basic equipment from practitioners of the art. Learn the rudiments of setting up, lighting and shooting an interview through hands-on instruction in small groups provided by area nonprofits engaged in video training.
The Roundtable is free and open to the public. Anyone wishing to attend should register in advance by emailing Anna Gavin, Events Coordinator of the Law School at firstname.lastname@example.org
Continuing Legal Education Credit
For more information please contact Anna Gavin, Events Coordinator of the Law School, at email@example.com
So You Want to Be a Visual Legal Advocate?
Friday, October 22, 2010
Friday, October 23, 2009
This Roundtable should be of interest to public interest lawyers, entertainment lawyers, law students, law professors, ITS specialists with public interest organizations, documentary filmmakers, and members of the Penn community who are interested in nonfiction video production and social justice issues.
Building Video Bridges
Friday, October 17, 2008
This Roundtable should be of interest to public interest lawyers, entertainment lawyers, law students, law professors, ITS specialists with public interest organizations, documentary filmmakers, and members of the Penn community who are interested in nonfi ction video production and social justice issues.
Watch videos of the roundtable here.
Anyone wishing to attend should register in advance by emailing Anna Gavin, Events Coordinator of the Law School at firstname.lastname@example.org. The organizers will seek approval for four and one-half hours of Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education credit to be provided for a nominal fee of $50. Please indicate your intention to seek CLE credit when you communicate with Ms. Gavin about your attendance.
Visual Legal Advocacy and the Public Interest
October 19, 2007
The Visual Legal Advocacy Roundtable will bring together private and public interest lawyers, community-based documentary filmmakers, and representatives from Cinema Studies, the Annenberg School, the School of Design, the Graduate School of Education, the Law School, and the Penn Video Network to consider:
Watch videos of the roundtable here.
Agenda for the Roundtable:
Examples of visual legal advocacy done by panelists
The website of the Penn Program on Documentaries & the Law provides an overview of the Program. The Project’s goals of incorporating the analysis and production of nonfiction film into the Law School’s scholarly and pedagogical agenda are explained in an article written by the Program’s Director.
The Documentaries & the Law website contains law-related videos done by Penn Law Students.
Martin Brigham is a personal injury lawyer who specializes in products liability cases involving burn injuries. He has represented children who were burned in oven tipover accidents. Some of the footage from settlement documentaries made by Mr. Brigham was incorporated into KYW/CBS3 news stories exposing the danger.
A settlement video is basically a visual summary of a case. It addresses the points of contention between the parties and highlights the strengths of the client’s case.
Sarah and Emily Kunstler are the founders of Off Center Media, a non-profit media advocacy and documentary production company. Many of the clemency videos they have made are streamed on their website.
YouTube has streamed public interest videos produced by lawyers. See, for example, the Paxil Settlement Announcement which was produced by the Public Citizen Litigation Group and Guantanamo Unclassified, a video made by William Teesdale of the Federal Public Defender’s Office in Portland, Oregon, in support of detainee Adel Hamad.
The websites of organizations like WITNESS and Breakthrough TV, which are devoted to producing videos and other forms of media to expose international human rights violations occurring throughout the world, serve as examples for what might be done in the area of domestic social injustice.
Scribe Video Center which is located at 4212 Chestnut Street has been an important partner in the development of the Penn Program on Documentaries & the Law. A nonprofit community media organization devoted to the advancement of the “use of video as an artistic medium and as a tool for progressive social change,” Scribe offers a host of workshops on video production.