Creating video for advocacy might mean making a high-impact, tightly edited one-minute piece made up of moving images and sound, an hour-long documentary, or a short piece of unedited footage showing a key moment. Video is versatile, need not be costly or very difficult to produce and can be distributed in many ways. This is the longest section in Message in-a-box because of the great variety of approaches to and uses of video. It will introduce the medium: how to make videos, how to use them to support your work and how to distribute them, with examples, case studies and useful online resources. This section also tells you how to make a video in support of your activism while taking steps to ensure all participants are safe and secure, and avoiding unnecessary risks.

Advantages of video

Disadvantages of video

It is a powerful medium, which

can convey high emotion and

personal stories.

Video is not right for all audiences:

it requires access to viewing

technology (internet, DVD or

VCD player, etc).

Video is multi-sensory – it is

seen and heard.

It’s not best for content such as

maps, charts and lengthy text.

Production and distribution

are getting easier and more


Video may be more expensive than

other media, it requires technical


It is good for audiences with

low literacy levels

Video can put allies in danger.

Some Burmese monks were

identified via video during the

2006 ‘Saffron Revolution’ and were then killed by the military junta

Video advocacy techniques

Video advocacy can take many forms:

  • Providing evidence before a court, meeting or tribunal
  • Grassroots educational and mobilising tool for communities, individuals and groups
  • Viral, humorous short animations
  • Mash-ups made of pre-existing material (video, audio, photos), remixed
  • Footage that illustrates and documents your campaign actions
  • Public service announcements
  • Documentary
  • News broadcasts and archive footage
  • Focussed and action-oriented videos, screened for decision-makers

In this section of Message in-a-box:

We've included downloads and guides for a widespread variety of tools to help you create your video, publish your video and play your video. As well as this, there is also a selection of video tools available for advanced users. (Visit our video tools page for more information)