Staff Blog

Closing the Detention Centres

In light of the 2010 Australian of the Year, Victorian psychiatrist Professor Patrick McGorry calling for an end to immigration detention centres, we’re featuring this documentary about the Woomera detention centre, Through The Wire.


In March 2002, detainees of Australia’s Woomera detention centre staged
a mass breakout in a spontaneous and desperate bid for freedom. Aided
by hundreds of committed social activists protesting Australia’s
treatment of asylum seekers in mandatory detention, the breakout
captured the attention and interest of human rights groups around the
globe. At the frontline of the breakout, filmmaker Pip Starr captures
the raw emotion and urgency of the event to create a damning indictment
of Australia’s inhumane immigration policies.

Staff Blog

SEL 49: The Soft Launch that Turned into a Hard Core Event

It was a night when technology meets humility as the residents of Sawah Lunto Street in
Manggarai, South Jakarta saw a different kind of crowd at the opening of SEL 49
on December 13, 2009. There were screenings, traditional food, acoustics, loud
music and a gathering of people from different backgrounds.

SEL 49 is the
joint office of EngageMedia, the Independent Videomaker Network (JAVIN) and
GloW Alliance. The three groups joined in the quest to work together in sharing
knowledge and concerns on social justice and environmental issues through
videos and other means. While both EngageMedia and JAVIN are video focused
groups, GloW Alliance focuses on bringing the climate crisis issues prominent
through various methods, although several of its founders are filmmakers. Aside
from being a workplace, SEL 49 – the name is short for Sawah Lunto and the prison-like
features of the building – opens its doors for people to screen films, discuss
films, books and issues, upload and download videos, and also to share knowledge.

What was planned
for a soft launch turned out into a grand launch as more than 150 people turned
up for the launch, from young filmmakers to seasoned historians, from tattooed
activists to the daughter of a former Indonesian president. With the help of
the community, the organisers blocked the Sawah Lunto Street and set up two
event areas – the tent on the road, and inside the office. The show kicked
start with Indo Beatbox performers, remarks from the local “Pak RT”, welcoming
speeches from representatives of the three host groups, then the “layar tancap”
(outdoor screening) of “Time for Reel Action” climate crisis video compilation.
The compilation itself is an initiative by EngageMedia to collect climate
crisis videos from Asia and the Pacific which were later put into DVDs and
distributed throughout the network in the region. Aside from Jakarta, the films
were screened in Australia and Denmark, where the UN Climate Change summit took
place. EngageMedia, JAVIN and GloW Alliance also combined to produce a film
called “Green Gone Wrong” which raises the issue of green trends in Indonesia
and the thirst for profit from the palm industry.

After the
screening, the crowd were treated by traditional snacks and live musical
performances inside the office space with EngageMedia’s very own training and
project coordinator/hip hop artist Nova Ruth, guitar guru Toto Tewel, Rustique Kollektiv,
Jalan Surabaya, Technoshit and Marginal.
The event inside was also screened outside at the tent via live web feed.

As the night
went on, people started to realise that SEL 49 is a different kind of place. In
the later days, the office was filled with more paintings and art installations
donated and loaned by artists. SEL 49 is open for anyone and welcomes ideas
from anyone with the thought of making a bit of difference. See you at SEL 49!

Staff Blog

Engagemedia Distribution Workshop (Malang)

Independent video makers everywhere often wonder what to do with the
videos they produce. The TV stations aren’t going to show it. You can
send it to some film festival but is it reaching your audience? Do you
print 100 copies and pass it to friends? Do you put it on some shelves
and hope people buy it? Do you upload it to YouTube and wait for
someone to watch it? Is there an effective way to get your video out
there into the path of your mass audience? Maybe you have to do a bit
of everything.

We at Engagemedia would like to share with you how producers of
critical films around the world are distributing their videos.
EngageMedia is an online video sharing, free software and skills
building initiative focused on social justice and environmental issues
within the Asia-Pacific region.

Topics covered in the workshop will include:

  • building a digital video delivery strategy
  • the use of video and online technologies in campaigning work
  • introduction to Free and Open Source Software (FOSS)
  • compressing video for publishing online
  • where to publish and how to use your online content in a website or blog
  • combining on and off-line distribution tools and techniques
  • use of Creative Commons and open content licensing, including finding media to use in your production

There are LIMITED spots (15) available for these free workshops. If you are interested in attending please download and email the registration form to [email protected]

Spaces are limited to people who:

  • already make videos about social justice and environmental issues;
  • have a laptop they can bring to the training; and
  • are based in or around Malang and Surabaya


  • Mamipo Malang, February 20-21, 2010
    deadline for submission of applications : February 12, 2010

Download the registration form here (or directly email if there is any downloading problem)

Staff Blog

Workshop Distribusi Engagemedia (Malang)

Para pembuat video independen
sering kali bertanya apa yang akan mereka lakukan setelah memproduksi
video. Stasiun TV tidak akan menayangkannya. Dapat juga di kirimkan ke
beberapa festival, tapi apakah itu cukup merangkul pemirsa yang
diinginkan? Apakah anda membuat 100 keping dan memberikan pada
teman-teman? Apakah anda menaruhnya pada rak dan berharap orang akan
mebelinya? Apakah anda meng-upload video di Youtube dan berharap orang
akan melihatnya? Adakah cara yang efektif untuk melempar video anda
kepada banyak pemirsa? Mungkin anda harus melakukan sedikit dari

Kami dari EngageMedia ingin berbagi tentang bagaimana
cara para produser critical films dari seluruh dunia mendistribusikan
video mereka secara online. EngageMedia adalah tempat berbagi video,
software gratis dan inisiasi pengembangan keahlian yang terfokus pada
isu keadilan sosial dan lingkungan di wilayah Asia-Pasifik.

Topik yang akan dibahas meliputi:

  • membangun strategi bagaimana menghantar digital video
  • penggunaan video dan teknologi online dalam kampanye
  • pengenalan terhadap Free and Open Source Software (FOSS)
  • video kompresi untuk publikasi online
  • di mana mempublikasi video dan bagaimana menggunakan konten online pada website dan blog anda
  • mengkombinasikan alat-alat dan teknik distribusi on dan off-line
  • penggunaan Creative Commons dan lisensi konten terbuka termasuk mencari media yang tepat untuk digunakan dalam produksi anda

Tempat TERBATAS (15) untuk workshop gratis ini. Bila anda tertarik untuk menghadirinya silahkan  mengirimkan form registrasi anda ke alamat email [email protected]

Tempat terbatas bagi mereka yang:

  • membuat video tentang isu keadilan sosial dan lingkungan
  • memiliki laptop yang dapat dibawa ke tempat pelatihan
  • dan bertempat tinggal di Malang dan Surabaya


  • Mamipo Malang, 20-21 February, 2010
    batas pendaftaran : 12 Februari, 2010

Download form registrasi di sini (atau langsung email apabila ada masalah dalam proses download)