New Media Advocacy Project

Overview

The New Media Advocacy Project is pioneering new ways to win the toughest cases and campaigns.

 

We help human rights lawyers, social justice advocates, and social entrepreneurs integrate video and social media into their advocacy toolbox. Unlike a production studio or Web marketing firm, we think like advocates because we are advocates.

 

N-Map brings fresh eyes to your most important cases and projects. We transform your clients’, communities’, and customers’ experiences into moving and persuasive visual stories.  We craft those stories for specific audiences, from judges, juries, and legislators, to the public at large.

 

Our approach is creative and flexible, but also rigorous and tactical—we create messages and media to support litigation, campaigns, legislative advocacy, community organizing and education.  Unlike a conventional video or media studio, we don’t just produce movies—we create movies that are an inherent part of your strategy, and we help you shape your strategy to take maximum advantage of new technology. 

 

Although each of these categories of “advocacy tools” is described separately here, the vast majority of our projects involve creating media for multiple audiences into one integrated campaign.

Litigation

When the gears of litigation have ground to a standstill, or if the odds are long, N-Map produces media designed to tip the balance.

 

As attorneys, we understand the litigation process as well as the audience.  We produce videos to be used in the courtroom, in domestic or international litigation or arbitration, for settlement negotiation and mediation, or outside the courtroom, to pressure an opponent to settle or mobilize outside support.

 

We work with attorneys to tell their clients’ stories visually.  Our media is compelling, emotionally charged, and effective, and can be designed to present the human side of your case to judges, the opposition, a jury, or the media.

 

We can also consult on the legal issues that arise—such as privilege, admissibility, defamation, and intellectual property—when making and using video and social media in and out of the courtroom. We know how to structure projects to minimize the legal risks to attorneys and their clients.

 

Services include: case analysis, strategic and messaging consulting, video production, and legal analysis of video advocacy strategy.

 

Here are a few examples of litigation videos:

 

 

Confronting Executions in Pakistan

 

N-Map partnered with the Justice Project Pakistan to design a media advocacy campaign that highlights the inadequacies of the death penalty as a deterrent punishment and humanizes Pakistan’s death row. We created four short documentaries and three social media videos that focus on the families of men who have suffered unduly in Pakistan’s criminal justice system. The goal of these videos is to engage Pakistani citizens and officials to consider the human cost of the aggressive death row policies. Watch all the videos here.

Combating For-Profit College Fraud

In 2015, the for-profit college chain Corinthian College Inc filed for bankruptcy and closed most of their Southern California campuses—leaving students stuck with enormous debt and worthless degrees.  Few of these students had been able to secure jobs in their promised fields, and so they were forced to pay back their federal loans while unemployed or making minimum wage. N-Map partnered with Public Counsel, the largest pro bono law firm in the nation, to create videos that help former students who have been defrauded by Corinthian College Inc, apply for federal loan relief. The videos live on www.studentfraudrelief.org, a website that serves as a one-stop-shop for students seeking relief.

Words That Kill

Words that Kill: The Defamation of Human Rights Defenders is a joint effort between the Colectivo de Abogados José Alvear Restrepo, Corporación Jurídica Yira Castro, Comisión Intereclesial Justicia y Paz, Bertha Foundation, and New Media Advocacy Project, this video series shows the shared experience of defenders who have suffered defamatory attacks on their character for their work defending human rights.

Campaigns/ Public Advocacy

We believe real human stories make the most compelling advocacy. A lot of organizations make campaign videos. We believe it can be done better.

 

N-Map combines a skilled lawyer’s awareness of advocacy tactics and strategic pitfalls with a documentary filmmaker’s focus on story and visual beauty.  Instead of generalized “awareness” videos or generic ads, we craft multi-audience video projects to move campaigns forward in concrete ways.  We may produce one video to persuade or educate a specific legislator about an issue and make another—with a completely different look and message—for a wider audience to apply pressure to that legislature.  

 

Services Include: messaging consulting, audience analysis, media production, and distribution.

 

Here are a few examples of campaign/public advocacy videos:

 

 

Confronting Executions in Pakistan

 

N-Map partnered with the Justice Project Pakistan to design a media advocacy campaign that highlights the inadequacies of the death penalty as a deterrent punishment and humanizes Pakistan’s death row. We created four short documentaries and three social media videos that focus on the families of men who have suffered unduly in Pakistan’s criminal justice system. The goal of these videos is to engage Pakistani citizens and officials to consider the human cost of the aggressive death row policies. Watch all the videos here.

Combating For-Profit College Fraud

In 2015, the for-profit college chain Corinthian College Inc filed for bankruptcy and closed most of their Southern California campuses—leaving students stuck with enormous debt and worthless degrees.  Few of these students had been able to secure jobs in their promised fields, and so they were forced to pay back their federal loans while unemployed or making minimum wage. N-Map partnered with Public Counsel, the largest pro bono law firm in the nation, to create videos that help former students who have been defrauded by Corinthian College Inc, apply for federal loan relief. The videos live on www.studentfraudrelief.org, a website that serves as a one-stop-shop for students seeking relief.

Words That Kill

Words that Kill: The Defamation of Human Rights Defenders is a joint effort between the Colectivo de Abogados José Alvear Restrepo, Corporación Jurídica Yira Castro, Comisión Intereclesial Justicia y Paz, Bertha Foundation, and New Media Advocacy Project, this video series shows the shared experience of defenders who have suffered defamatory attacks on their character for their work defending human rights.

Legislative Advocacy

Most legislators and their staffs are still accustomed to communicating ideas on paper.  Furthermore, they are often insulated from the problems of underserved communities, because those communities do not have the resources to reach them—either through lobbyists, or in person.

 

The New Media Advocacy Project crafts media designed specifically for legislative advocacy.   We pursue a variety of strategies—from videos to persuade or pressure a single legislator or staffer, to complex multi-audience strategies to convince legislators to act.

 

Services include: messaging consulting, audience analysis, media production, and distribution

 

Here are a few examples of legislative advocacy videos:

 

 

Wrongful Incarceration on Nigeria’s Death Row

To bring an end to the use of the death penalty in Nigeria, N-Map partnered with the Legal Defense and Assistance Project (LEDAP), a leading Nigerian criminal justice NGO, to create a media advocacy campaign for legislative reform to outlaw the use of the death penalty as a punishment. The campaign focuses on the staggering amount of innocent men who are sentenced to die for crimes they did not commit. This video exclusively focuses on the story of Williams Owodo, who was wrongfully incarcerated for over 17 years. By focusing on one individuals’ experience—from arrest, to signing a forced confession, to conviction, to appeal—we show audiences the ease by which innocent people can be sentenced to die within Nigeria’s criminal justice system

This video is an attempt to answer the question “how can an innocent person be convicted of a capital crime?”

Girls Speak Out Against Child Marriage

 

 In Northern Nigeria 76% of girls are married before the age of 18. We teamed up with Nigeria’s Isa Wali Empowerment Initiative (IWEI) and the Women’s Rights Advancement and Protection Alternative (WRAPA) to create a series of videos that ignite new conversations about child marriage, and empower Nigerians with religious and legal arguments to bring about lasting policy changes.   

Our three videos will speak directly to girls, parents, community-level leaders, Islamic leaders, and legislators. Over the next year IWEI and WRAPA will screen our videos for these target audiences across Northern Nigeria in order to convince parents, Islamic scholars, and others to support education for girls and institute a national law that prevents girls from marrying before the age of 18.

Water at the Foot of the Volcano

The watershed of the Amecameca and La Compañía rivers spans a region covering 11 municipalities of the State of Mexico. About 40% of Mexico City’s water comes from this very basin; however, overuse and mismanagement inflicted drastic effects on the environment and its inhabitants: from desertification and pollution to sinkholes and water shortages. 

Thankfully, there is a strategy to promote sustainability in this area: the Plan Hídrico. Developed by scientists, academics, and community members, the Plan Hídrico advises for sustainable solutions like building filtration wells to prevent further water loss and protecting forest areas to retain water. This film—produced in partnership with Controla Tu Gobierno and the Comisión—plans to translate the Plan Hídrico into political change. Our partners will use the video as an advocacy tool to encourage their communities and policy makers to adopt the Plan.

Community Mobilization & Education

An engaged and educated community or constituency is essential to achieving long-term social change.  Litigation victories or legislative success will be harder to achieve without communities support, and implementation of the high-level change may be impossible.

 

N-Map works with advocates, lawyers, campaigners, and social businesses to educate and mobilize their communities.  N-Map is keenly aware that messages designed for communities often look very different from those for other kinds of advocacy.  We spend time learning the particular perspectives and experiences of the community audience, and involve community members in the design of the media and messaging, to ensure that the messages strike home.

 

Services include: messaging consulting, audience analysis, media production, and distribution

 

Here are a few examples of community mobilization and education videos:

 

 

Beneath the Surface

 

In partnership with the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) and New York University School of Law’s Center for Human Rights and Global Justice (NYU), we are creating a platform that connects communities that have already been impacted by mining with others in the Global South who are facing or will soon face similar challenges. To date, we have created five short videos that tell the stories of community leadership in the face of mining in Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, DRC, Bolivia and Peru. This project is still in production, and you can watch the completed videos here: Community Solutions to the Global Mining Threat.

Encouraging The Human Rights Ripple Effect

In partnership with Accountability Counsel, with funding from the 11th Hour Project Foundation, we produced two short videos that demystify the process of using international accountability mechanisms to confront multinational corporations that threaten human rights. Both videos use the case of a hydroelectric plant in Oaxaca, Mexico to illustrate the process by which Accountability Counsel partners with communities to research the financing the behind projects and demand justice and accountability. This video, The Cerro de Oro Hydroelectric Plant: A Latent Threat will be used by the community members who participated in the process, who will share the film within Mexico in order to warn their fellow citizens about vulnerability to similar projects, and educate them about their rights. See our blog for more information on the project. 

Waiting for Fahd: One Family’s Hope for Life Beyond Guantánamo

We partnered with the Center for Constitutional Rights to share a side of the Guantanamo narrative rarely told: the human story. Waiting for Fahd: One Family’s Hope for Life Beyond Guantánamo highlights CCR client Fahd Ghazy, a Yemeni national unlawfully detained at Guantánamo for more than 13 years. 

Training & Capacity Building

We train our organizational partners, law firms and social enterprises, and student groups, to use video and new media to support human rights advocacy efforts.

 

We can conduct discussions and workshops to review what styles of media might be most effective for a given advocacy context. We can also integrate our clients into our production team in order to provide hands on training and experience.

 

By the time the project is completed, clients will have increased capacity to formulate messaging, reflect upon their other stories they have to tell and work towards producing future videos.

 

Services include: short workshops on media advocacy, video production for advocates, and strategic messaging; full day or multi-day custom workshops; and experiential learning.

 

 

Beneath the Surface

 

In partnership with the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) and New York University School of Law’s Center for Human Rights and Global Justice (NYU), we are creating a platform that connects communities that have already been impacted by mining with others in the Global South who are facing or will soon face similar challenges. To date, we have created five short videos that tell the stories of community leadership in the face of mining in Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, DRC, Bolivia and Peru. This project is still in production, and you can watch the completed videos here: Community Solutions to the Global Mining Threat.

Encouraging The Human Rights Ripple Effect

In partnership with Accountability Counsel, with funding from the 11th Hour Project Foundation, we produced two short videos that demystify the process of using international accountability mechanisms to confront multinational corporations that threaten human rights. Both videos use the case of a hydroelectric plant in Oaxaca, Mexico to illustrate the process by which Accountability Counsel partners with communities to research the financing the behind projects and demand justice and accountability. This video, The Cerro de Oro Hydroelectric Plant: A Latent Threat will be used by the community members who participated in the process, who will share the film within Mexico in order to warn their fellow citizens about vulnerability to similar projects, and educate them about their rights. See our blog for more information on the project. 

Waiting for Fahd: One Family’s Hope for Life Beyond Guantánamo

We partnered with the Center for Constitutional Rights to share a side of the Guantanamo narrative rarely told: the human story. Waiting for Fahd: One Family’s Hope for Life Beyond Guantánamo highlights CCR client Fahd Ghazy, a Yemeni national unlawfully detained at Guantánamo for more than 13 years. 

Distribution

N-Map designs distribution strategies tailored to the particular needs of a case or campaign. This can involve social media, targeted ad buys, in person screenings or other, more creative or guerilla tactics of distribution.

 

There are no cookie-cutter distribution strategies.  One of the first questions we ask before starting a project is how we are going to ensure that the media is seen by the audiences that need to see it.   We craft an individualized and creative distribution plan for every video we produce.

 

Services include: Strategic consulting, social media development, media distribution

Beneath the Surface

 

In partnership with the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) and New York University School of Law’s Center for Human Rights and Global Justice (NYU), we are creating a platform that connects communities that have already been impacted by mining with others in the Global South who are facing or will soon face similar challenges. To date, we have created five short videos that tell the stories of community leadership in the face of mining in Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, DRC, Bolivia and Peru. This project is still in production, and you can watch the completed videos here: Community Solutions to the Global Mining Threat.

Encouraging The Human Rights Ripple Effect

In partnership with Accountability Counsel, with funding from the 11th Hour Project Foundation, we produced two short videos that demystify the process of using international accountability mechanisms to confront multinational corporations that threaten human rights. Both videos use the case of a hydroelectric plant in Oaxaca, Mexico to illustrate the process by which Accountability Counsel partners with communities to research the financing the behind projects and demand justice and accountability. This video, The Cerro de Oro Hydroelectric Plant: A Latent Threat will be used by the community members who participated in the process, who will share the film within Mexico in order to warn their fellow citizens about vulnerability to similar projects, and educate them about their rights. See our blog for more information on the project. 

Waiting for Fahd: One Family’s Hope for Life Beyond Guantánamo

We partnered with the Center for Constitutional Rights to share a side of the Guantanamo narrative rarely told: the human story. Waiting for Fahd: One Family’s Hope for Life Beyond Guantánamo highlights CCR client Fahd Ghazy, a Yemeni national unlawfully detained at Guantánamo for more than 13 years.