Time flies — and so do we, apparently! Since our spring update, it’s been a whirlwind here at Dot Connector Studio, with new associates, clients, events and publications at the intersection of media and social change.
We just returned from an amazing visit to Amsterdam, where we hashed out strategy questions with filmmakers, funders, and impact producers from around the world at the International Documentary Film Festival. Explore other events we’ve worked on over the past six months in the interactive map above, or read on.change.
As always, we could not do what we do without our incredible network of colleagues. Let us know what you’re up to these days, and we hope you enjoy whichever holidays you choose to celebrate.
Where we’ve been…
We’ve worked with Media Impact Funders to help organize a series of in-depth convenings:
- In June, Executive Director Jessica Clark and Associate Director Katie Donnelly headed out to Palo Alto to help coordinate the annual Media Impact Forum and Media Impact Festival.
- In September, we connected with the ONA conference for a funder briefing on Emerging Strategies for Supporting Local and Ethnic Reporting, and with Philanthropy New York, where Jessica presented on Communications Evaluation for Foundations and Nonprofits.
- In October, we worked with the PopTech Team to organize a master class on designing engagement around complex issues.
- In November, we helped to bring makers and foundation leaders together to contemplate strategies for crafting high-impact environmental media .
Also at ONA, the Dot Connector Studio team helped iSeeChange officially launch a new website, which lets users combine localized NASA satellite data on CO2 with their own climate observations from the ground. Read all about it in the latest issue of Nieman Reports, the site of the World Economic Forum, and the Tow Center’s new Guide to Crowdsourcing.
In July, Jessica presented at a pair of “catalyst workshops” hosted by the Conservation Media Group, designed to help environmental filmmakers and activists hone strategy for short-form documentary.
In April, she debuted Are We There Yet? A Road Map for Creating High-Impact Interactive Documentary, at the annual Tribeca Interactive Day.
We also spent the spring and summer at home in Philly working with our partners at St. James Strategy on developing business and media strategy for national organizations.
…and where we’re going
We’ve got a crop of fresh clients and projects, including:
- The Democracy Fund: Stay tuned for details about a project that Jessica has been working on with this growing foundation re. systems thinking and local journalism.
- The Internet Archive: The Dot Connector Studio team is helping to strategize around the launch of the Political TV Ad Archive — keep your eyes peeled as the election season heats up!
- Earlier this year, Jessica worked with Media Impact Project at the University of Southern California’s Norman Lear Center to publish Impact Assessment for Nonprofit News Projects & Their Funders. Now, she’s starting as senior fellow at the center, where she’ll be researching methods for evaluating experimental media projects over the coming months.
- The iSeeChange team isn’t done yet! Watch for an announcement of their forthcoming app, which you can use to report on your own weird weather observations.
Grab those reading glasses!
Katie, Jessica and our art director, Carrie McLaren, worked with Tracy Van Slyke of the Citizen Engagement Lab to create Harnessing Documentaries for Social Change, a guide for advocates on using documentary film to advance a cause.
- Jessica and her work at MIF were featured along with other impact experts in “Personal Affect: The Impact of Measuring Impact” in Documentary‘s Summer 2015 issue, plus “Can We Measure Media Impact? Reading Between The Lines” in the Stanford Social Innovation Review’s Fall 2015 issue.
- What’s your theory of change? See how we worked with jesikah maria ross of Capital Public Radio to help puzzle through this vexing question, and to develop 10 steps to creating and assessing community engaged reporting.
Dot Connector Spotlight: Angelica Das
Das specializes in strategy for social impact documentary with over a decade of experience in non-profit communication and management. She was previously associate director at the Center for Media & Social Impact, running content production, projects and events on empowering media that matters. Das is an impact producer, presenter, writer and public media advocate. She is an Advisory Board member for Meridian Hill Pictures and regularly serves on screening committees and juries.
In our off hours
- Jessica is scarfing down alternative sci-fi collections such as Long Hidden, Octavia’s Brood and Sisters of the Revolution. Why does this matter, you ask? Read this.
- Katie is serving as a board member for Justice for My Sister, a documentary on gender-based violence that is currently airing on PBS stations across the country, learning work and happiness at events like Culture X Design and binge-watching Master of None.
- Carrie is devising media strategy for NYC Opt Out, a parent-led organization to combat high-stakes-testing in NYC schools, and is eagerly awaiting the second season of the British TV series Catastrophe.
- Angelica is discovering the joys of streaming Australian television, including the endless follies of Sydney lawyer Rake, the brooding bloodied broads of Wentworth prison, and the island-dwelling family of drug lords in The Straits.
Notes from the field
Kudos to these folks we’ve worked with over the years—follow ’em on Twitter!
- @airmedia just announced a fresh crop of Localorians
- @wearehearken and @tracyvs just got startup funding from New Media Ventures
- @jcstearns is doing a bang-up job of documenting new directions for local news
- @chrislhayes won a much-deserved News & Documentary Emmy
- @agolis launched the addictive crowd curation platform This. in public beta — so now you can join too!