Mobile Journalists will often describe MoJo as an equalizer, or a means of democratizing storytelling. But what does that mean, concretely?
It means that with the help of phones, we should be seeing more stories coming from areas where journalists don’t often go. As part of a six-month project, Qisa Lab tied up with Adivasi Lives Matter, an organisation that trains young people from tribal and rural communities to share their own stories.
ALM trained the creators in Jharkhand, Bhopal and Mumbai to shoot videos on their phones, and Qisa Lab sponsored their mics. Then, the team at Qisa Lab edited and published their stories on two YouTube channels: Qisa Village and Qisa Taste.
The channels have done well, wracking up views even months after the project wrapped up. Qisa Village even gained more than 1,000 subscribers. One of the most successful videos was from a series on village games, that focused on different variations of marble games. The series was shot entirely on the phone.
In a post on Instagram, the host of this series, R Varun, said “Stories need great content, and not necessarily great device.”
Another really successful video was ‘How to make a broom’ by creator Anupam Kar. Anupam did a series of videos on village life and shared recipes from his home village in Jharkhand. On Qisa Taste, one of his most successful videos was on how to make beer at home. Anupam and the other creators made many amazing videos.
Each creator was paid for their work on a per-video basis.
Disclaimer: In this article, we’re writing about ourselves and our own experience and learnings.