Instagram COVID-19 Videos
To ensure students received important information about our local school district’s re-entry plans for fall 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, I partnered with another local high school paper and the school district to produce two IGTV videos and host an hour-long Instagram Live. We chose Instagram as the platform to ensure that our outreach to students was effective.
I conducted the research for both IGTV scripts, interviewed school district officials, reviewed communications from the Oregon School Activities Association, drafted the scripts, and provided video editing support. In addition, I was one of the students on camera sharing information.
For the Instagram Live, I co-organized the event and facilitated advertising on social media. I researched the school district’s reopening plans and created a question and answer database to provide guidance during the live. I was on-screen answering questions, joining live from the Clypian account so that we could reach both our followers and the school district’s.
This partnership between high school newspapers and the school district helped 1000’s of students get valuable information about schools reopening in the midst of a pandemic. It also gave me extensive working knowledge of the school district’s re-entry planning, which I was able to use in future Clypian articles.
My near-daily reporting of racial justice protests last summer led to invitations to speak on numerous national, international, and regional networks, including MSNBC, CBC, FOX12, KGW, French TV, and BBC Radio. The interviews provided opportunities to highlight the experiences of student journalists and the important work we do, and reflected the growing legitimization of student media. My hope was to illustrate to people across the U.S. that student journalists provide deep and hard-hitting coverage and to inspire other youth to consider reporting as a way to engage with and have an impact on their community.
During these interviews, I described what I experienced on the front lines in Portland and Salem and shared information gathered through hundreds of hours spent on the ground witnessing historical events as they unfolded and talking to protesters, political leaders, and law enforcement. I also relied on extensive research I conducted on the recent history of protesting and policing in Oregon.
I took hundreds of videos at the protests in Oregon, uploading them to Clypian’s Twitter as the events were unfolding and reaching millions of people. This type of in-the-moment visual journalism, is such an important part of covering breaking events. It allows people to view what is happening right then from their phone, without being there.
Through my videos I documented chants, marches, arrests, tear gas, stun grenades, assaults, and more. They helped capture a holistic image of what was happening, as it happened. When the federal agents responded to Portland’s protests, one of the easiest ways for people to understand what was happening on the ground was through video.
Along with posting them to Twitter, numerous outlets used my video footage of the protests for their own broadcasts and reporting. Outlets such as ABC, CBS, MSNBC, Reuters, and others requested licenses to use my footage, which I granted.
I also took videos of fire relief efforts, fundraising events, and more. All of which were uploaded to our Twitter, in real time.
After working on an extensive piece about special interest funding in Salem Keizer School Board elections, I was invited to speak on the Oregon Public Broadcasting show Think Out Loud. I talked for 10 minutes about the research I had done and things I had uncovered in my reporting. The article is linked in the “Reporting and Writing” section and here is a link to my radio interview.
The Clypian editorial staff created “The Editors’ Podcast” during my junior year. I worked to create potential topics and provide basic research to my Clypian colleagues. We were planning to release the podcast several times a year.
Unfortunately, COVID-19 disrupted the program after the first two thirty-minute episodes were broadcast on the importance of student journalism, the First Amendment, and legislation that was in the Oregon Legislature at the time. I participated in both episodes and edited the second episode. I am hopeful next year’s editorial staff will continue the series.