human rights manifesto.


no one should ever have to sustain the kind of existence in which the circumstances promote exclusive association between subsistence and submission, between physical survival and the mental, emotional, and spiritual death that occur as a result of the terrorist act that is rape or any kind of habitual violation.

no one should only know hope in the abstract.

no one should be forced to accept physiological existence, the unconscious habit of taking up space in the universe, as a substitute for the beauty of both self-discovery and self-creation that constitute the essence of LIFE.

no one should ever have to define joy only by the absence or slight mitigation of crippling, soul-harrowing sorrow.

no one should ever have to devalue the breaths they breathe as unwitting, torturous curses rather than free gifts of inestimable value, as chances and blessed opportunities to give and receive love for another precious moment.

no one should ever be taught to believe that silence is the only song they could ever contribute to the music of this world.

no one should ever be forced to believe that risk is always a bad thing.

no one should ever have to be passively compliant in the derogatory act of corporeal objectification.

no one should ever have to think that their only worth arises from their willingness to sacrifice.

no one should ever have to grow up before their time.

no one should ever have to accept misery as the standard of normalcy.

no one should ever exist in a world that views treating a human being like a human being as a revolutionary or radical concept. 


feedback for katie & rebecca.


Katie and Rebecca, if my roommate wasn’t asleep I’d be rolling on the floor laughing :-).  Your video was amazing – I love the mix of music (both contrasting and appropriate/not distracting) as well as your incorporation of the Potter madness that has swept the world and how new media has helped fuel that madness.  Indeed, we have taken everything from the books and have incorporated it into real life as much as possible.  My critique, however, is that I think there could be maybe just a little bit more emphasis on new media itself or something that would highlight the fact that one of the reasons so much has been done with Harry Potter is because of new media.  Perhaps a title slide with a question asking how far we couldn’t have gotten without new media?  Just a thought :-).  My only other critique is, as we’ve said with many before, the credits roll a bit too quickly to the point where I wasn’t able to fully read them.  Other than that…wow!  It flows well, incorporates a great deal of Potter mania (I especially love the action shots of the Winthrop Quidditch team), and has flawless execution.  Amazing job, ladies – and make sure to share this with Dr. Bickford if you haven’t already!

feedback for kim.


Kim, I absolutely love the time and effort you took to put this together!  Your message is very clear, and one that I didn’t even realize I believed until I saw your video.  The removal – or, really, stripping – students of their technology and then employing it continuously in the classroom as a necessary tool by which to learn is entirely hypocritical.  Of course, there’s the point that texting in class, etc. hinders learning – but then there’s also the evidence that shows that today’s generation types significantly quicker than the previous generation.  Undoubtedly, this is a useful skill.  Rather than showing students how to use personal technology like cell phones in a responsible manner during school, it’s merely taken from them, which, as I remember in high school, only builds resentment and the desire to rebel.

I think your video has excellent flow, great content, and the music especially emphasizes your message.  The only thing I can think of as far as constructive criticism would be your transition between the two main parts of your message.  Perhaps a blank black screen and a music fade-in and fade-out?  I don’t want to create an excessive amount of more work for you to do, but your video is already so fantastic that it’s really just this one tweak that might make it even more stellar!  Excellent job – high school students everywhere stand in solidarity with you and your message! 🙂

feedback for rykia.


Rykia, your video’s concept and execution are beyond original, unique, and professional.  I greatly enjoyed the juxtaposition of your interviews, your incorporation of still photos and video clips (which can be difficult to format so that they flow well together – but you managed it flawlessly!) poignant and appropriate, and your overall message.  New media does not just affect relationships and education – it affects the ways in which we learn and think about the world through political activism.  And with so many avenues with which to currently find information about candidates, personal actions to take if you want to participate in the campaign, and ways to find out election results, how much attention are we really paying to how important it is to still be involved in the political process?  Is there anything perhaps alienating about having so much information online?  Does it in any way provide us some kind of anonymity (“Well, I watched the live stream of the CNN political debate in the background while I wrote my blog post for WRIT 501…so yeah, I know what’s going on…”) or some absence of responsibility for really, truly knowing what is going on in the political arena?

Ultimately, your video makes me ask a lot of questions about new media that I had not asked before, which I think is a great, great strength.  Excellent job, missus :-).

feedback for crystal.


Crystal, I really like that you synthesized our class discussions and readings into your own unique interpretation of what new media represents to you.  As much as I am not a fan of postmodern relativity, the malleability of new media certainly lends itself to the notion that it can be everything that you do – and sometimes do not – want it to represent in your own life.

I constantly amaze myself with how much time I can waste on something as mundane as Facebook, quite frankly…and I’m not proud of it.  I do appreciate, however, the nonjudgmental tone with which you present new media as a procrastination tool (juxtaposed to new media as a tool for education!).

My suggestion would be to see if you can find any videos of online classes or videos of classes using SmartBoards, etc.  The stagnancy of the pictures concerning your examples of education don’t flow as well with your overall video (and I only say that because the rest of your video is absolutely fantastic!!).  Your concept is definitely original, but maybe some more smoothness in transitions (as you mentioned in the caption above your video) would simply add polish to your stellar work!

I also really appreciate your examples of communication using Skype.  When I studied abroad, I depended on Skype to keep in touch with my family more than I ever thought possible – even with a CrackBerry at my disposal.  The personal touch was very sweet, and emphasized your point that new media is, indeed, what we make of it.  🙂

feedback for stella.


Whoa!  I swear these videos just keep blowing me away…Stella, that was amazing :-).  As an ex-English major still very much attached to the printed word (as nearly everyone in class also claimed when asked on the first day of WRIT 501 their thoughts on new media), I absolutely adore your very original idea: that even if media changes, the message does not.  In the same way that it does not always matter what someone says, but the way or tone of voice in which they say it, truly you are correct (at least, in my opinion).  Huck Finn is still Huck Finn whether read in paperback or on a Kindle.  The characters, the plot, the message, the meaning – nothing has changed.  Only the way in which it has been presented has changed.

I love that the flow of your video accurately reflected the evolution of books.  I also enjoy that it started out very slowly and progressed much more rapidly towards the end, as is true with most things in evolution.  Once we start on a new kick, it’s hard to stop…the Kindle 1.0 has to lead to the Kindle 2.0 within months of its first release, so on and so forth.  You captured the essence of literary evolution, especially when comparing the paperback version of Huck Finn to the e-reader version.  Everything was carefully planned and meticulously executed.  My one and only complaint was that I couldn’t read your credits because they scrolled so quickly (but, it could also be my – very tired – eyes that are unwilling to keep up).  Seriously though…that was fantastic.  You should be very proud :-).

feedback for jessica.


Jessica, excellent job! Especially towards the end, your questions are very thought-provoking (particularly “do you text more than you talk?”).

My one disconnect occurred when you mentioned Dr. McKemy’s conclusion…and then it went right to the credits? Not sure if it just accidentally got cut off, but I really like how you examine a broad spectrum of technology users. Like Rebecca said, so much of what we’ve been looking at focuses on college students. I remember getting my brick of a cell phone in 6th grade that was for emergency calls to mom and dad only, and texting wasn’t even around! Then, when I was 15 and a sophomore in high school, I volunteered at an after-school program where one of the 5th graders told me she wanted an iPhone for Christmas…. “The times they are a-changin'” doesn’t even begin to cover it, and your video brings that across very well.

I also wasn’t sure if your sources for the video footage were cited – forgive me, they might have been, my eyes have become blurry from the long day :-).  Overall, I think your content flows quite well, but I’m not sure if, like you said, music would be appropriate given the interviews…perhaps a transitional song that fades in and out between them?  Something along the lines of a current techno or pop song (unfortunately, all that’s coming to mind is Beyonce’s “Video Phone” which may or may not be appropriate…)? Just a suggestion – but it’s looking great and I can’t wait to see where it goes!

feedback for jonathan and amanda.


Jonathan and Amanda, this. was. FANTASTIC!!!  I love the concept, the originality of the execution, the appropriateness to everyday life.  I love the fast pace of the film and the song, both of which convey your message pointedly.  I had a good laugh at the whole thing as well – one of those “it’s funny because it’s true” moments :-).

In terms of our heuristic, your video flows well, is coherent and easily understood – your message is one that is both fundamentally simple yet wildly deep, thoughtful, and accurate – with concise elements and a clear storyline.  It’s most certainly original, gives credit where credit is due – I especially love your incorporation of people from outside the class! – and absolutely generates a thought-provoking reaction while connecting us all to a shared human experience: being too much and not enough at the same time.  With all the roles we perform and all the hats we wear everyday, as your actress clearly showed when she was using both the office phone and her cell phone at the same time, it’s easy to feel inadequate, pressed, stressed, and, quite frankly, like you’re going crazy.  You were able to portray this kind of craziness in a deliberately executed, well put-together manner, which in my opinion shows both great planning and great thought on both your parts.

Although I think that it might apply more to the lifestyles of college students and young professionals, who are perhaps the most swept up in the age of new technology, looking at people like my mom (special ed teacher) – her life is just as hectic, constantly working and planning and talking and teaching.  Therefore, I think it would appeal to all who watch it, whether they can connect with it or if it simply makes them laugh at the truth it portrays.

Kuddos, guys.  You did an amazing job – my one suggestion would be that it’s coming up as 1:01 – maybe just cut out one second of your actress on the phone?  Honestly though…that’s all I have :-).

feedback for holly.


Holly – wow!  Excellent, excellent job!  I really enjoyed how your video flows seamlessly between concepts, highlighting the truth that new media is art.  I enjoyed the innovative nature with which you created your video.  I’m currently going through my iTunes library to see if there’s anything I can suggest…”Bulletproof” by La Roux, perhaps?  Or something similarly techno-ish…perhaps an Ellie Goulding dubstep remix?  Or really any dubstep remix for that matter…

I agree with most of the previous comments.  I think you could probably add examples or explicate a bit on how new media is an artistic creation – perhaps, rather than two YouTube videos, you could incorporate screenshoots of writing your blog posts, or creating your nonprint presentation?  I think something along these lines could prove to the audience that it takes artistic skill and consideration to create a piece of new media.  Like Jessica suggested, perhaps shortening your intro ever so slightly may give you some more space to do that.

The idea behind your Concept in 60 video is extremely original and conveys what I believe to be a major point of WRIT 501: pieces of new media are indeed part and parcel of the artistic landscape.  One of the great things about new media (in my opinion) is that it offers a way to broaden our concept of art as a picture in a frame, or a sculpture in a garden.  In terms of the class’s evaluation heuristic, I would certainly rate your video highly :-).  You’ve hit all those major points – I can’t wait to see how much farther you go with it!