Renew Media is pleased to let you know about fellow Philip Mallory Jones’ newest installation that has a Second Life component. “IN THE SWEET BYE & BYE is a multi-modal fusion of visual art, literature, and immersive digital media, manifesting as a gallery installation, on-line environment in Second Life, and bound print portfolio. It is an evocation of African-American personal/familial/communal narratives and allegories, in words and distinctive interpretive visual compositions. It is a hymn of nuanced harmonies and discords; a blending of voices sweet and rough. It is a trans-generational memoir, illuminating paths we walk, stories we’ve been told, and the dream-places we haunt.”

I haven’t gotten there yet, but the exhibit is at Ohio University’s Without Boundaries Campus in Second Life. I will be doing an interview with Jones soon to get the whole skinny.

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To Self-Distribute, or Not?
Posted by VanessaDomico | 19 Mar, 2007, 01:49
I’m often surprised at how many filmmakers actually want to distribute their own films. They are filmmakers, don’t they want to make films? However, I’m sure they’ve heard the stories (two that come to mind are the motorcycle movie and the wrestling movie – see any connection between these two films?) of how you can sell thousands and thousands of dvds by just doing a little research, a little marketing and a little posting. And viola!

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Documentary Budgeting
Posted by RobertBahar | 19 Mar, 2007, 01:37
In 2005 I gave a series of budgeting workshops at Doculink meetings in L.A., San Francisco and New York and later developed those workshops into an article called “An Introduction to Documentary Budgeting” for the IDA’s Documentary Magazine. I posted both the article and blank budget template (for Excel) on the Doculink resources page. Scroll down to “Budgeting Article” under “Resources.”

Also, if you are working on budgeting your project and need more templates and a community that’s involved with budgeting, you may want to join the Film Budgeting Yahoo Group.

[Eds. Note: Robert Bahar is a filmmaker and founder of Doculink, an email listserv of documentary filmmakers. He also serves on the board of the International Documentary Association. He is based in Los Angeles, CA.]

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Article: France bans citizen journalists from reporting violence
Posted by AgnesVarnum | 7 Mar, 2007, 19:42
Not exactly what we do here at Renew, but troubling news out of France for anyone with a video camera.

Via MacWorld, by Peter Sayer, IDG News Service:

“The French Constitutional Council has approved a law that criminalizes the filming or broadcasting of acts of violence by people other than professional journalists. The law could lead to the imprisonment of eyewitnesses who film acts of police violence, or operators of Web sites publishing the images, one French civil liberties group warned on Tuesday.” Read the entire article>>

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Fine Line Between Exposure and Distribution
Posted by DavidDundas | 27 Feb, 2007, 15:01

In 2006 video was internet-ized. People began to watch what they wanted when they wanted online. The networked screens; computer, ipod, cell phone all have become legitimate screens for people to watch shows, movies and videos. This trend is game changing for every party in the media value chain.

A film or new media business will not spontaneously combust in a successful company. However the playing field has been leveled for everyone to have the opportunity. Today we see an emerging formula for success. It is important for media makers to realize the intricacies of the market, and set out a clear plan that capitalizes on the inefficiencies.

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Articles: Follow up on Fair Use & Insurance
Posted by AgnesVarnum | 25 Feb, 2007, 17:43
Some great follow-up coverage in the trades on fair use and insurance:

Variety: Insurance for documentary ‘fair use’ – Coverage to enable free use of film clips by Dave McNary

Hollywood Reporter: Documakers getting aid on fair use by Gregg Kilday

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Independent Lens Online Shorts Fest now accepting submissions
Posted by AgnesVarnum | 25 Feb, 2007, 17:25
Cash prizes and fame await! Here’s the scoop:

Now accepting submissions for The Independent Lens Online Shorts Festival: A film
festival at your fingertips!

Deadline April 23, 2007

– Grand Prize: $2,500 and consideration for a national television premiere on Independent Lens

– Jury Prize: $1,500 and showcased on the Independent Lens Web site at, one of the top visited dot-orgs on the Internet

– Online Winners: 8 additional shorts win $1,000 and showcased on

Inside Indies and Independent Lens present the second annual Independent Lens
Online Shorts Festival. Independent filmmakers are invited to submit short-form
films, 10 minutes or less in length and in all genres.

Get guidelines, FAQ and online application now.

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BAVC Producers Institute for New Media Technologies
Posted by AgnesVarnum | 21 Feb, 2007, 01:51
Deadline for applications is March 1 for this “annual institute that will work to connect independent producers and their socially relevant content to emerging models of storytelling and distribution.”

About the Institute
The Producers Institute for New Media Technologies is a ten-day residency for eight creative teams (independent producers or public broadcasters) with a shared goal of developing and prototyping a multi-platform project inspired by, or based on a significant documentary project. More>>

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Article: Insurer accepts fair use claims
Posted by AgnesVarnum | 20 Feb, 2007, 01:40
Via Pat Aufderheide at the Center for Social Media: “A major errors and omissions insurer, National Union, a member company of AIG, is accepting fair use claims based on the Documentary Filmmakers’ Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use, when supported by an appropriate lawyer’s letter. This is an extraordinary demonstration of the power of this best-practices approach to making the fair-use option in copyright law useable again. ‘This is great news,’ said filmmaker Alex Gibney, who recently got insurance with such claims recognized.

In only a year, the Documentary Filmmakers’ Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use has changed the clearance practices of documentary filmmakers.” Read the entire article>>

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D-Word Forum: Reaching a Wider Audience: Alternative Dist Models
Posted by AgnesVarnum | 20 Feb, 2007, 01:28
D-Word is hosting another great online forum from Feb. 19-23. The idea is a spin-off of the DocAgora conference from this year’s IDFA and many of the participants from the confernece are participating in the forum. You must register if you aren’t a member of D-Word but, no worries, its FREE!

From the email I received:

“It will basically be a discussion about new platforms for online distirubution with two to three moderators. It will mostly be in a Q&A format, not unlike an interview, but since others will be joining in with comments as well as questions, it can get very interesting and free-form.”