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The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view

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Posted by Gena Mangiaratti at 3:58PM   |  1 comment

Blog post by Gena Mangiaratti, Journalism '13, FLEFF intern, Feeding Hills, MA 

I'm currently at the meet-up with investigative journalist and independent filmmaker Danny Schechter, who will be screening his film Plunder tomorrow (Saturday) at 2 pm at Cinemapolis. This is just a short post about a few things he's talked about at this session.

Schechter opens with an excerpt a documentary one of his interns made of his life. We learn that his mother, Ruth Lisa Schector, was a poet. His father and grandfather were both union people.In the film, one of the first things Schechter says is that he likes to look at the news from the inside out, and would like young people to know that the "mainstream approach [to media] is not the only approach."

He is a journalist, the film states, who can't stand most of what passes for journalism.

After he shuts off the documentary, he explains that one of his aims is to let people "hear voices of people considered voiceless."

Referring to the Jay Leno bit where Leno goes out on the street to see how much people know about history and politics, Schechter shares his observation that people are often disconnected from the world around them.

"This is a country that's living in a cocoon of amnesia. People don't remember what happened yesterday," he says, explaining that many people aren't aware of how issues, such as the tough state of the economy, came to be. They might have heard about the situation on the Daily Show, but don't fully understand the context separate from the comedy.

The kind of journalism he tries to practice, he said, is to challenge what people think. But he brings up the question:

"How [do you] tell real stories about real people in a way that engages people? People won't be interested in things that aren't interesting."

One of the outlets Schechtor writes for is Al Jazeera, and he also writes on a blog every day at

Save the date: If you're intrigued, come to the screening of Plunder at 2 pm tomorrow at Cinemapolis.

1 Comment

I saw the film PLUNDER and I found it very informative. Although I had seen in before it helped to see it again because I missed some details that I had not noticed the first time. It was incredible investigative reporting on Schecter's part. He covered the issue on all levels, ranging from the lower classes to big corporations. The media tends to focus mostly on low income neighborhoods and households when they address crime in our nation. The fact that the media, which is controlled by the upper class citizens involved in white collar crimes, fails to address the crime that impacts our nation the most is disappointing. It is motivating to see filmmakers address these societal imbalances of power.

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