Professional Development
Nonprofits / Social justice

Media Mobilizing Project is launching an online archive of Philly’s social justice movements

Next year, videos documenting the city's social movements going back as far as 2002 will be available to stream online.

A rally outside School District headquarters , March 2013. (Photo by Flickr user Peoples World, used under a Creative Commons license)

Media Mobilizing Project (MMP), a nonprofit that works to amplify voices of communities fighting for justice, equity and human rights, has launched the first stage of its digital archive of social justice movements in Philadelphia.

The archive will contain more than 800 hours of footage documenting local movements, including clips from grassroots campaigns for education funding, immigrant rights and workers’ rights. Starting Thursday, MMP will make available the metadata for these clips, and site users will be able to request videos they’re interested in.

The first part of the launch will include footage spanning from 2006 to 2012, and the organization will gradually release the rest of its footage, going back to 2002. The content will be hosted on a separate site, called the People’s Media Record.

Currently, folks can browse through the site with keywords like education, racial justice, housing and healthcare, chose a location or organization they’d like to know more about. From there, users can request footage from metadata provided to learn more.

The organization said that students, journalists, historians and organizers will be able to view the archive in its entirety, and be able to stream videos directly on the site in 2020.

MMP has been working on this project since early 2017, said Mariam Dembele, the org’s communication coordinator. Dembele, Tech Manager Helyx Horwitz and a few other staff members will be fulfilling the requests until the rest of the project is launched next year.

The process of creating the archive has included centralizing footage that was spread out over multiple hard drives, digitizing old MiniDV tapes and collecting descriptive info about all the files.

“It was a major long-term project for us, however, we felt it was important because oftentimes this type of footage is lost,” Dembele said. “We wanted to preserve it as a record of Philadelphia’s vibrant history of protest and community action.”

Companies: Media Mobilizing Project

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