This is a response to the Video for Change article that Gina posted in the latest email (which I think is actually a chapter after the one on Sakai). I really really appreciated the pragmatic approach that Cizek takes to working as a video journalist in dangerous situations. Her piece is comprehensive and best of all, draws on the experience a number of other working professionals. Since I was in grade school I have dreamt of being a journalist, and in high school did several different investigative pieces about local politicians, school segregation and the drug culture. Looking back, I think the work I was doing was very real, and even then I experienced harassment from school administrators and local politicians for the work.
As I continue to think about pursuing a career in journalism (or at least an activist practice in some form) I know that personal safety is and will be a huge concern. I think Cizek’s considerations of what it would mean to take up a false identity is very interesting –as I myself have often considered the merits of that. However, lately I have been thinking of a different method: hyper-visibility. This would mean that I am SO visible in my work and reach out to as many people as possible, that it would be disadvantageous to threaten it. Of course, this method has its limitations and hinges on personal ability to be visible.
I’m curious to hear what others think about this. Is safety and security in work something people think about?