CADE Media Festival

CADE, Mar 16, 2007
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I don't usually enter contests, but CADE is having a multimedia content this year and I'm proud of a video I did this year - it has more than 7,000 views, and it's 30 minutes long - so there you have it. Oh sure, maybe I shouldn't be proud of it, but I am. It's the first real video that I've done, and I did it in order to show that you could train yourself and do quality multimedia with basic tools and self-learning. But... what I get instead is an object lesson in how not to run a multimedia contest. First of all, there's no entry category for individuals, which is what mine would be. Second, the application form is a PDF, that you download and... what, I guess print and mail? Third, there's an entry fee. This covers, what, the $10 plaque the winner gets? And fourth, "Video programs, although mastered on various formats, must be submitted on VHS Videotape." I'm not sure what this means - I have a video, must I convert it to videotape? So - no entry. Here's a better idea: allow people to submit multimedia the way they do academic papers (why oh why do conferences always accept only 'papers'). Review the proposed submissions. They can present their multimedia, then discuss it. And if you must offer prizes, offer them to this pool of entries.
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