Q7: How do we understand and measure the impact of an i-doc?
Answered by Harry Davies, Product Marketing Manager at Google.
Why Harry Davies?
Harry Davies is currently working for Google, and he is responsible for launching tools that track user’s online bahaviours and understanding. From Goggle Analytics to Google Custumers Serveys and Google Trends, Harry is a man that practices the art of impact quantification… but what makes Harry really special for us is that he used to work for the COI (Central Office for Information) so he is used to a problematic that is central to documentary makers: how to measure impact in the long term, and in the real world (rather than just online consumption). In this interview, Harry gives us tips on how to use the current tools for impact measurement and tell us what is coming next…
DIG DEEPER into Harry’s interview:
EXTENDING THE DEBATE:
I invited Kat Cizek, Documentary Maker & NFB’s Director of Highrise to extend the debate and give her point of view.
Why Kat Cizek?
From all the interactive documentary makers than I know, Kat Cizek is the one that has experimented the most with the form. This has to do with the particular approach she took with Highrise: not a finished product, but a process, a space for encounter and experimentation. Being a multi-year, many-media collaborative documentary experiment, Highrise has allowed the National Film Board of Canada to try more than one approach in understanding and assessing impact. I wanted to ask Kat about the different routes she has tried in the last five years. I also wanted to know what her personal conclusion was: do we know how to assess the impact of an i-doc? Are the tools that we have good enough?
I also invited Clint Beharry, from the Harmony Institute, to comment on Kat Cizek’s point of view.
Clint is Senior Creative Technologist at the Harmony Institute – an interdisciplinary research center that studies the impact of entertainment on individuals and society. They are about to release a free web application, ImpactSpace, for mapping media impact. As a tool it promises to give a larger quantification of the impact of our documentaries – taking in consideration social media impact, conversation analysis and historical visualisation of similar projects. I asked Clint to tell us more about ImpactSpace: why is it a radically new way of understanding impact? Should we use it and why?
Fell free to add to this debate by contacting me on firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have experimented other ways to evaluate impact, if you want to do a Hangout yourself or if you have written a paper about impact and i-docs, do let me know!