During the first POV Hackathon that took place just few days ago (August 11-12, 2012) in New York City, POV paired a handful of documentary filmmakers with expert web developers and told them they had 30 hours to re-invent the documentary for the web.
I think this is one of the most interesting initiatives related to the new forms of documentary. The way this event was organized in fact involves both issues of the representation of reality, both the practical aspects of the web language. [mirmilla]
The five projects, selected on the basis of covering several different areas of the documentary for the web, have led to the creation of 5 prototypes which can be watched on POV site:
1. Aatsinki: The Story of Arctic Cowboys a feature-length documentary
2. Living Los Sures a collaboratively produced, interactive documentary
3. Op-Video a short-form, freely embeddable, mixed-media essay that features experts, writers and doers, as well as hand-drawn animation and original music, about current public affairs.
4. Feed Me a Story a transmedia project
5. StoryCorps Audio Slideshows a new Web platform to complement its distinctive audio style
[excerpts for references]
What Is a Hackathon?
POV's Hackathon is inspired by the "hack days" of the open-source development community and companies such as Facebook and Google. In a traditional hackathon, software coders collaborate outside of the usual corporate constraints in compressed time frames (usually fueled by pizza and energy drinks) to solve a problem.
With POV's Hackathon, we're adding independent producers into the mix, adding their creativity and expertise in social-issue storytelling. POV will pair five filmmakers with developers based on their Hackathon applications.
Once matched, the teams will participate in a pre-Hackathon orientation session to prepare media (video, photos, data...) and make decisions about software and tools. Then, over two days, the teams will work together to produce a working prototype.
What is POV?
POV (a cinema term for "point of view") is television's longest-running showcase for independent non-fiction films. POV premieres 14-16 of the best, boldest and most innovative programs every year on PBS. POV films are known for their intimacy, their unforgettable storytelling and their timeliness, putting a human face on contemporary social issues.