The New Media Advocacy Project (N-Map) combines legal expertise with cutting edge communication tools to strengthen human rights and social justice work. We help advocates throughout the world tell their stories in more compelling and powerful ways—to tip the balance in the toughest cases and campaigns.
Human rights advocates and social entrepreneurs face enormous challenges: deeply entrenched social issues, over-resourced opponents and competitors, as well as hostile or risk-averse courts, legislatures, and funders. This equation means the usual tools are not enough. N-Map uses advocates' greatest tool—their stories—to help meet those challenges. Our innovative mix of legal and media knowledge helps to bring those stories to life, and to use them effectively in courtrooms, legislatures, and communities.
See some recent examples of our work below, and contact us to learn more about what we do.
Consumer debt lawsuits present enormous due process challenges for New York City’s civil courts. In 2008, debt collection agencies filed over 300,000 lawsuits and although filings decreased in recent years, the annual caseload still remains in the six-figure range. Low-income individuals make up the majority of these defendants and few can afford lawyers—in fact, only two percent retain legal counsel. Since most defendants enter the courtroom alone and uninformed, usually one obstacle prevents pro-se litigants from protecting their rights: knowledge.
To increase the accessibility of legal information we created a series of interactive, rights-education videos to help New Yorkers sued for consumer debt. The example here—one of eleven videos—teaches defendants how to file an answer; normally, a convoluted set of instructions. Yet engaging animation helped us translate the dense legal information surrounding consumer law into a series of digestible, modular videos—increasing pro-se litigants’ ability to access legal information and consequently justice.