Introducing New NAMAC Member: Line Break Media
Line Break Media Presents their 2012 Campaign to Prevent Community Displacement:
Rooting for the Home Team
The generous contributions of our NAMAC 2012 Conference partners allowed us the chance to invite many new Minnesota-based organizations into NAMAC membership. We are proud this week to feature one such new member, Line Break Media.
In this interview, Line Break’s Co-Founder, Erick Boustead, who was also a panelist on “Prodding the Sleeping Giants: Media, Arts and Citizens’ Movements,” introduces Line Break’s newest campaign and commitment to employ media technologies towards promoting global social justice movements.
Line Break is currently involved in supporting a campaign in Fortaleza, Brazil to stem the tide of displacing long-standing populations in the name of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. How did you get involved in this organizing effort and why did you decide to invest Line Break resources towards this particular cause?
We were introduced to this issue in Brazil as part of a three week trip, or “encontro,” dedicated to movement building and sharing stories related to our relationship with the land. The encontro was organized by Ciclovida | Lifecycle, a group of people in the states and Brazil working jointly to fortify community resiliency through media, permaculture, renewable energy, seed saving/exchange, and supporting land rights struggles. One such struggle we encountered was that of the Comunidades do Trilho, 22 communities facing imminent displacement ahead of the FIFA World Cup.
We spent a day with these communities. When asked how we could support the movement to prevent their removal, they simply requested that we share their story with the world. And in hearing their story, we realized their situation has much in common with economic development and housing issues here in Minneapolis. This is why we decided to develop Rooting for the Home Team. We believe that in connecting the communities in Brazil with communities fighting displacement in the states through multimedia, each of these movements is stronger.
What do you hope viewers of the video will do upon having viewed it? What are some ways audiences can actively engage with this video campaign?
Root for the Home Team! We truly believe that another way of development and placemaking is possible when hosting global sporting events. Fans of the communities in the video can engage by:
- Signing the petition at RootingfortheHomeTeam.org (and being sure the “keep me updated” box is checked)
- Sharing the video via social media and email
- Joining us in asking FIFA President Joseph “Sepp” Blatter whether he will help prevent the displacement of these communities on FRIDAY OCTOBER 12 through our Twitter day of action. The twitter action will coincide with a day of qualifying matches for the 2014 Cup, making it a perfect occasion to see if we can collectively hold FIFA to their proclaimed values around social responsibility and having positive impacts on society.
To Line Break and Fortaleza inhabitants: What are some challenges and/or advantages that you’ve discovered in hosting an international social justice video campaign?
Many of the challenges we’ve encountered have actually added a great deal of perspective to our work. For every step we have a language barrier to work through and every decision requires waiting for our main points of contact to consult with the communities during weekly assemblies. By continuing to have the communities lead, however, we’ve been learning a lot about the histories and ways in which social movements operate in another part of the world. We’ve also learned a bit about Brazilian film theory and technique throughout the collaborate editing process.
One hurdle has been the fact that this is out of sight and out of mind for many people in the states. With so much media already saturating our feeds, the trick has been to connect what is happening in Brazil to struggles happening in our own communities. And that has ultimately been a huge advantage when promoting this as a global or “translocal” issue.
Tell us a little about how you came to create Line Break Media. What need were you addressing? And why did you think multimedia was the way to address this need?
Fellow co-founder Nolan Morice and I have been working together using music, art and media to support social movements for about five years. The early years were primarily spent organizing events and tours with some friends in Minnesota to bring the worlds of music, art and activism together, which became an organization known as Substance.
In the winter of 2010, we shifted gears to start Line Break Media, specifically focusing on the power of narrative development and multimedia to communicate the work that is happening within movements for justice. Before launching Line Break, we spent about four months meeting with organizations to see what was missing in their work and realized there was a large need for multimedia capacity and training, as well as support in using their stories to challenge dominant narratives related to their work.
Stay tuned to namac.org for more insights on this developing campaign from the activists in the Fortaleza community themselves.