Friday, August 19, 2011

Shout-out for fundraising friends

My first-ever puppet role, Intern

Tonight's post goes out to my friends at The Media Show, the TV show I used to write for when it was in its formative stages at Teachers College in New York.  The team behind this program is responsible not only for giving me my first ever puppet role (Intern, the sock who always refers to herself in the third person) but also for breathing life into my musical, Aisle Six, when it had its showcases at the Players Club.

These days they're looking for funding to spread awareness of media and technology throughout schools.  Below is an excerpt from a post by my friend Gus, producer of the program, in which she explains her goal.  They're currently running a Kickstarter campaign to raise the funds they need. Click the link or read Gus' post below to learn more.

So if you're interested in supporting a program that uses comically irreverent puppets to promote media literacy, read on.  Personally, I find this cause to be a far more compelling one than, say, Greenpeace.

At the moment, they have four days remaining on their Kickstarter campaign.  Well? What are you waiting for?

Excerpt (by Gus Andrews):

{...} Critical thinking about the media — often known as “media literacy” — has been edged out of school curricula. High-stakes tests pressure teachers to stick to rote memorization, reading, and math. Internet access is spotty or locked down at many schools, limiting what teachers can teach about online safety. Students may graduate without ever learning how advertisements provide the funding for most of their favorite shows, magazines, or websites.
The Media Show makes short online videos to take up the slack. We believe that when youth learn how the media and technology around them are made, they are empowered to think critically about the media messages they are immersed in.
Since 2008 we’ve used irreverent humor to explain copyright law, advertising tactics, email etiquette, and more on YouTube, the world’s most popular video site. In 2010, we won a Media That Matters award for our episode on photo manipulation throughout history — from Hitler airbrushing his enemies out of photos, through advertisers lightening pop star Beyonce’s skin color.
How can you help? The Media Show is currently seeking donors to fund not only production of upcoming episodes on search engines, online ads, and hacking, but also to support us as we take our shows to classrooms, libraries, and afterschool programs.
We need just ten more donors at the $550 level to reach our goal of $9000, to produce more episodes and bring workshops on media awareness to more youth. Would you help us? Participating Sponsors at this level fund workshops in major US cities, as well as helping us reach young viewers online with brand new episodes.
Four more donors at the $1500 level would help us reach our goal, and do workshops in areas of the United States which are farther from centers of media production — places where youth are even less likely to be exposed to the workings of media and technology industries.
Time is running out on our campaign. We need to raise $9000 by Tuesday, August 23rd in order to receive our funding. Will you help us teach more young people to think critically about media systems?

To read the full text of Gus' message go to The Media Show official website.

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