Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Type “webdocs” into Google and you’ll get returns of “new website launching soon” and talk of “the next big thing”.

But webdocs are not simply documentaries published online: they are documentaries designed for publication on the web, allowing the audience to interact with the contents in a hypermediated environment. Such content is available in clusters of information through which the audience navigates their own way, with media such as photos and videos serving the more secondary purpose of illustration.

Studies devoted to this new form of media appear as early as 2004, but only recently have investigative journalists begun to think of it as a valuable tool for in-depth storytelling even as the medium’s popularity continues to increase.

French and French Canadian media outlets have led the way in commissioning these webdocs, many of which have attracted international recognition and awards such as the 2008 webdoc by Samuel Bollendorf and Abel Ségrétin, Journey to the End of Coal.




Interactive documentary, journalistic tool, or the next big thing: webdocs are a hypermediated medium in a hypermediated environment, the product of an increasing tendency to mix different media – and the web is teeming with people looking for optimal ways to do so. Some are finding ways to adapt webdoc apps such as Klynt for use on tablet and android even as others are developing their own platforms.

For those who wish to stay ahead, the Centre for Investigative Journalism is organising a Webdocs Workshop for Investigative Journalists on 19 January at City University as part of the CIJ Investigative Film Week 2013.

The workshop will be taught by Matteo Scanni, author of the first ever Italian webdoc The Iron Curtain Diaries 1989-2009.


Do you remember the internet hype when filmmaker Kevin Macdonald (One Day In September, The Last King of Scotland) made a request for home-video footage from around the globe, to be combined and edited into a single film representing Life In A Day in 2010?

There were three basic concepts: the footage was to be shot on 24 July 2010, it had to be filmed by you, and it could be of anything you wanted – almost.

81,000 submissions and 192 countries later, the resulting 95 minute feature was presented at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and a few months afterwards was available on YouTube, back among the community from whence it came.

A similar project, Britain In A Day, was directed by Morgan Matthews (also produced by Ridley Scott and Kevin MacDonald) using footage from some of over 11,000 contributions received in November 2011 from UK residents, and broadcast on BBC2 in June 2012 as part of the Cultural Olympiad.

Less than a year later Kevin Macdonald is back, and this time he wants your Christmas!

The Christmas In A Day website contains tips and guidelines on how to make and submit your video, as well as Appearance Release forms and any other technicalities that might be applicable. Essentially, if you’re a UK resident over 10 years of age (under-18s require parental consent) this call to filmmaking is intended for you!

The deadline for filming is 27 December 2012 at midnight.

“The most extraordinary discovery was that the film turned out to be rather good. In the strangest turnaround of my film-making career, what started as an experiment – a film for festivals and a few academics interested in the fusion of film and web – had become an accessible, laughter-filled, tear-tinged hit.”
(Kevin Macdonald on Life In A DayThe Guardian, 7 June 2011)