Over the past month, I have been researching and writing the thesis for my master’s degree in journalism. I chose to focus my thesis on a subject I am deeply passionate about; documentary journalism.
I want to reach out to the community of DSLR filmmakers and journalists to find out what they think about the ethical implications of using cinematic elements to embellish video journalism stories.
As I began my research, a google search for documentary journalism returned two interesting names in the field: Dan Chung and Kurt Lancaster. Dan Chung is a photo and video journalist for The Guardian whose blog site DSLRNewsShooter.com is the hub for discussion on the topic of documentary journalism.
Kurt Lancaster, a published author and professor of journalism at Arizona State University, also maintains an excellent website devoted to documentary journalism.
I noticed that Mr. Lancaster lives in Flagstaff, Arizona, one of my favorite cities in the state to visit, so I added him to my friends list on Facebook. To my surprise, Mr. Lancaster confirmed my friendship with a positive comment regarding my blog site and a mention that he would be in Phoenix in March for a workshop on DSLR Filmmaking. Mr. Lancaster was kind enough to agree to sit down with me for an interview after the workshop. I intend to use Mr. Lancaster’s expertise as an accomplished documentary journalist to illuminate the topic posed in my thesis.
The ease with which I made the connection to a journalist whom I admire demonstrates the power of social media to quickly connect people with similar interests. Online social engagement is about reaching out to individuals and communities to connect in a meaningful and symbiotic way.
With a little research, time and a desire to connect with the global village, anyone can empower their online personal brand with meaningful social interactions.