#Twittamentary: Connecting people, in 140 characters — June Yang
JUNE 6 — A crowd-sourced documentary about Twitter, with content suggested by its users, is making waves across the microblogging platform.
As befitting the subject, here is my summary of the documentary in less than 140 characters: “#twittamentary: A film about how people use Twitter for things from personal communication to doing social good.”
The film charts a journey across the United States as the film-makers meet people who have had their lives changed in subtle ways by Twitter.
Featured users include a homeless woman, a group of brain cancer survivors who met and organise meetups through Twitter, and a woman truck driver and her dog (no, really).
“Twittamentary” is the brainchild of Tan Siok Siok (@sioksiok), a Singaporean film-maker currently based in Beijing.
During the course of her first film, a documentary about the Beijing Olympics, she found that her most ardent fans, the ones who would tirelessly promote the film, tended to be the ones she interacted with online, particularly on Twitter. Curiosity piqued, she embarked on this project.
Everything about the film was done through the Twitter medium — from assembling a crew, to finding stories to tell and, now, its promotion and distribution.
What I gleaned from watching “Twittamentary” is that it isn’t really about Twitter itself but about the people who use it.
And although the film takes place in the US — the birthplace of Twitter being the natural place to shoot a documentary about the platform — extraordinary stories of online connection take place in Singapore as well.
Witness the number who shared their opinions, hopes and frustrations during the last few elections.
When @mrbrown’s daughter Faith got lost in a train station last week, thousands spread the word on Twitter, asking those in the vicinity to look out for her.
And I did not have to watch the first Malaysian Super League match played by the Lions XII to know what the scoreline was — every goal, every missed opportunity was broadcast all over my feed.
“What I learned is that people actually want to connect,” Tan said.
“People want to have Tweetups. They want to connect to the people they’ve met online.”
I agree. — Today
* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.