MI2 Self Assessment

October 12, 2012 - 12:54 pm Comments Off

Being the first group up and after looking at all the other seminars, I quite amazed how we were able to achieve what we did in such small amount of time, and that alone should be something we can take pride in.

My role was to be in charge of the promotions, seminar technical facilitation and documentation. Our seminar idea was relied on the short video, which the guests will discuss it. Me, Joshua and Eli were in charge of it and I think we did it successfully as many people love it during the seminar including the three guests. It was really hard to write a script, find a location and actors in three days. Also, I was in charge of booking all the equipment for the seminar day and being in charge of sound and filming. I brought my 5d as a back up and still photos and we end up using the footage I took for the 5mins highlight. According to the seminar critiques and steering committee, the highlight video was high quality, well produced and filmed. In spite of the short time for preparation, I think unlike the other film group we had probably more than 4 people didn’t take part in the group at all and just attended the seminar ! Therefore, we had to collaborate on everything to jump the red line. I tried to actively contribute in the discussions during the first classes of the semester, where we were all trying to get a sense of direction for our seminars. Also, I helped Alex and Ahmed in searching for guests after being in the risky last minute.

Regards seeking out my own learning experience, I think attending the other seminars and the PNR were more useful than arranging a seminar. Making the highlight video forced me to watch the whole seminar more than three times and go over the good parts, which was very insightful and knowledgeable. In addition, I think I got a lot out of the other seminars especially the digging up the truth and 28 minutes late.

I attended all the group meetings, filming and seminars except the dawn of the digital. I attended the preparation classes and engaged in the discussions. Also, I attended most of the after seminar classes to discuss my PNR with Nick especially that my PNR focus was very confused as I’m writing about the Bahrain industry and looking for interviewees from there. Also, as I mentioned above I helped the group in organizing, documenting and wrapping up regardless spending a long time in editing the still photos and highlight video and audio.

The value of the seminar series is great from the process of researching, finding guests, organizing and documenting. It was extremely insightful to hear from the real world media people. I’m amazed of how all the groups managed to embrace the topics of the seminars and the context of them, which allowed the audience to experience great and knowledgeable seminars.

HD 85


September 24, 2012 - 12:49 pm Comments Off

Eventception Seminar from vnelmeo on Vimeo.

I still remember my confused face after seeing the event poster, especially after having four focused seminars on specific media platforms. I was very hesitant whether to go or not and whether it is a career option or not. However after making it, I think it was focused and pretty relevant in terms of content and guests as well. The seminar has explored the experiences of Michael Carrucan who is the festival director of Queensclift Music Festival; Bruce Keebaugh who is the director and co-founder of The Big Group and Ryan Barwood who is the production manager, Midsumma Festival Artistic administrator for Orchestra Victoria. The guest touched some important points in management, building up from scratch, organization and responsibility. I like how each guest throw something different in the panel and in the end it all come together and make sense.

In terms of facilitation, making an event on how to make an event is making you under the microscope. I like the red carpet and refreshments. The audio was a big technical difficulty and it was disturbing the guests and audience and sometimes loses the audience eye direction. I think the unusual place of the sound mixer was a bad idea for the soundman and audience eyes. The promotion was pretty good and the poster is great.

28 Minutes Later

September 10, 2012 - 12:23 pm Comments Off

28 Minutes Later seminar is featuring Lawrence Leunge, Mathew Saville, Chris Gist and Caterina De Nave (couldn’t attend). The seminar is a talk show structure that explores the Australian television industry, uncovering just what it takes to survive as part of the programs and networks broadcasting across the country. Starting with the catchy and creative promo, I think the group made a great work in the marketing stage by promo, posters and Facebook, which led to a very good attendance number. I liked the one-on-one chat between Keiran (the host) and the guests especially with Keiran’s great moderation skills and well-organized questions that kept the seminar focus always in the right track. The questions were really good to get out as much as he can from the guests in the interest of 3rd year media students that about to graduate. Coming up with a new Q&A style comparing with the last two seminars was very appealing. Starting with exploring each guest first step in the industry was extremely useful for us especially for the students that are interesting in TV, which makes the path very clear. Mathew and Lueng made very good points on how to jump from film school to TV by involving in in some unprofessional television series and start making network and contacts. Also, unlike the past seminars, I think the guests really complete each other and everyone add good points on each other especially in their stories. However, in the last seminars, each guest tried to be distinctive and tell the best story. In terms of the room set up and facilitation everything was fairly standard. Catering, lights, fliers were very good and simple. Overall I think it was a very successful seminar and really thanks them for bringing Leung (he made it).

PP2 Project Report Research

September 3, 2012 - 12:50 am Comments Off

Project Report Research

First of all, before I start writing my notes and ideas, unlike being only cinematographer in my previous semesters, in this course and my last project, I’d like to focus more on learning some distinct and creative cinematography techniques and lighting. Therefore, in the tests and also class workshops I tried always to jump on lights and leave the camera. Eventually, I hope I could learn and try new cinematography and lighting techniques in this course.

Stylistically, my overall vision is, all the TVCs will have a whity, bright and soft style but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t employ the dramatization to create the suspense and excite for the audience. The soft lighting will ensure that Burnett feel and looks high quality, excellence and meritorious. Unfortunately we can’t use different lenses with the Sony ex3 and we just have one format size, but we still can create shallow depth of field by with playing with the focal length manually! By making a distance between the main objects and the camera (Reference). I feel like the depth of field in some of the TVCs we are producing is important to the mood we are looking to, regardless the importance of directing the audience eye to the exact message we are delivering.

Ideas and techniques:

1- Lens Flare

13369640-vintage-woman-portrait-with-lens-flareOne of my prefer cinematography techniques is lens flare which mostly used in music videos and artificial pieces, but it might fits with one of our ideas. The lens flare technique happened when non-image forming light enters the lens and subsequently hits the camera’s film or digital sensor. This often appears as a characteristic polygonal shape, with sides, which depend on the shape of the lens diaphragm. It can lower the overall contrast of the frame significantly and is often an undesired artifact, however some types of flare may actually enhance the artistic meaning of the film style. Understanding lens flare can help you use it — or avoid it — in a way, which best suits how we wish to portray the idea (Reference).


1- Backlit

Backlight can also produce some interesting effects for dramatic lighting, show actor’s forms while hiding their faces and cast menacing shadows on the floor or walls. Toplight can produce interesting colour casts (fancy lighting word for coloured light reflection) on performers hair, shoulders. It can also be used to wash the stage floor with intense colour without making your performers look like they have been painted all over (Reference).

Screen Shot 2012-08-27 at 10.56.39 PM

  • Under the Microscopr Script (Michael)

- Colours tend to be white, blue and green.

- The script idea and rhythm is nearly fast like the Air Force TV ad, therefore this style of commercials must be fast to engage the audience. It’s a bit hard to use the jib-arm in a fast movement especially with the corridor scene, however I think we can solve the problem with some fast cuts with movement.

- A problem we might face in the lighting is the ceiling lights which will create shadows under the character eye and if the character have big hair, and even though if we used a Kino light it might give a long shadow either in the corridor or on the walls which is wrong as the real source of lights is the ceiling lights. However, to solve this problem we can use a white board or reflector and reflect the ceiling lights from down.

- In the testing day, I’ll test hand held instead of the jib-arm dolly, which might works.

- The many white colours might be a problem for lighting and the solution can be the backlight on the head. The backlight is always creating a beautiful image and completes the reality of the composition, not to mention it separates the object from the background.

- The framing will be clear and without having many out of focus stuff to direct the audience attention the messages delivered by the characters.

- For the street scene, it’s better to film in cloudy weather and avoid extremely sunny weather to not get out from the soft mood.

- In case, if the transitions didn’t work well we can use some graphics transition styles such as the one in this video

Screen Shot 2012-08-27 at 8.02.20 PMScreen Shot 2012-08-27 at 8.02.36 PM


Inspiration clips:



Shot List


scene 1 corridor

scene 6 corridor

  • Checkmate Script (Hugh)

- Colours tend to be white, blue and green but this script is not strict as it has a dramatic scenario as well.Screen Shot 2012-08-26 at 10.38.07 PM

- We can use the pulling focus all the time style such as

- From the test tube to Dave

- Microscope to Sharon

- Watch to Sharon

- Dave to Sharon (Dialouge)Screen Shot 2012-08-26 at 10.37.57 PM

- Sharon to Dave (Dialouge)

* It won’t be really shallow like the video as our lens hasn’t a great aperture, but would suits with our commercials. Also it’s going to be fast and not separate the background completely (close aperture).


- Changing room first shot can be from inside the locker or cupboard and Dave take the mask and gloves..ect.

- Fast cuts while he wearing Full body white jumpsuit, protective face mask.  White tennis shoes, surgical gloves) to start adding the action gradually to the next scene.

Screen Shot 2012-08-27 at 11.17.01 PM- Depends on the change room, but I think visually it would be beautiful if we used some (LITTLE) dark spots in the change room, here is an example but not the extreme dark shadows. Just to make a distinct between the scenes of shiny labs and the change rooms.


- The many white colours might be a problem for lighting and the solution can be the backlight on the head. The backlight is always creating a beautiful image and completes the reality of the composition, not to mention it separates the object from the background.

Inspiration clips:


Screen Shot 2012-08-21 at 7.41.12 PM

Screen Shot 2012-08-21 at 7.42.52 PM

Screen Shot 2012-08-21 at 7.43.05 PM

Screen Shot 2012-08-21 at 7.43.24 PM

Shot List

Floor Plan

checkmate first scene

checkmate second scene

checkmate third scene

checkmate fourth scene

Digging Up the Truth

August 29, 2012 - 1:42 pm Comments Off

Digging up the truth is the second seminar of MI2 six series seminars featuring four documentary filmmakers: John Safran, Denis K Smith, Helen Gaynor and Nicholas Hansen. First of all, before jumping immediately to critiquing the seminar, I think the marketing was outstanding in social network and also among media and other courses students. Hence, the attendance was extremely success as the audience filled the whole place before the beginning of the seminar and some of them stranded for the entire time!

The focus of the seminar is clear and led us to quite understand and explore the various processes involved in the pre-production, production and post-production of documentary films. The moderator was excellent especially being a student between four professional filmmakers and he drew out many interesting information which grasp the audience attention all the time, by hitting issues like financing, grants, documentary subjects, documentary styles and approaches, ethics, narrative structure, editing, equipment and distribution. He also moderated his well-prepared questions and discussion session slow from the start following the conclusion of the seminar.

What I found interesting that the four filmmakers touched some important parts of documentary that the future media kids really need such as quality of access, how the documentary will appear on screen and how to shape the story. Overall the Q & A panel style is completely effective in interactive to not lose the audience and they drift off, either mentally or to their Facebook. The room setup, lighting sound, greeting and thanking guest were very good except the number of seats which is not under their control. I hoped there was a bigger chance for the audience to ask questions either by Twitter or live. Also, the flow of the seminar was at some stages lost but the moderator was very good in returning everything to the right place.

Overall, excellent seminar, content and guests!

Work Attachment Report

July 10, 2012 - 7:51 pm Comments Off

When I read my program structure in the first day of university, the work attachment directly attracted me, however with the time I began to really worry about it especially when the industry is foreign for you. By the end of the second year the work attachment become the most interesting part in the “Media” program I eagerly anticipate for various reasons. First of all, it provides the opportunity to get real hands-on experience in the media industry, while still under the protective blanket of university. Second, it is a great start in terms of building a network in the media industry, which really helps in the future. Eventually, getting a taste of and insights into the industry in which I would like to dive in and work.  Therefore, I worked out to do more than one work attachment to figure out the suitable place, but unfortunately this didn’t work as the plan was and I ended up with doing one work attachment at Al Kout Tv station.

Al Kout TV is a new private Kuwaiti TV channel broadcasting general affairs and entertainment in an innovative and modern style throughout the Arabian Gulf. Al Kout was launched in 2008 as one of the first private TV stations in Kuwait and since then, the channel has experienced a steady growth both in technical level and staff. Today, 120 professionals work for the channel. Al Kout, first and foremost, delivers quality News and family entertainment programs to its local Kuwaiti citizens with maintaining its traditions, values and integrity.

The first day was quiet rapid as many new things to catch up with. I was assigned to meet up the manager in the morning at the channel office. He welcomed me and we had a bit chat on where I found my self, what I seek to learn through the internship, how can I add an advantage to the channel and in which role, what’s my experience and how I think I am going to develop it?. Then, he took me in a tour of the television station over the studios, editing suites, offices and the other facilities. My first impression was WOW, as I didn’t expect an Arabic TV station that was still on probation have these huge studios with high technology equipment. After the meeting and tour, I was introduced to Sayed Ali Al-Najjar who is the manager of the Creative and Art Department in the channel and Sadiq Al-Samak who is a creative cinematographer.

The first thing I learned is the way of institutional work of the TV station and the distribution of roles. The station consists of departments such as general administration department, sales and marketing department, news department, creative and art department, IT department and public relation and community affairs. Furthermore, the station executive manager is generally the chief operating officer at the station. All departments ordinary report straight to the executive manager. The executive manage directs the work ethic, tone and pace of the station. However, the general manager predicts market trends with setting budgets and performance expectations. In addition, he is also responsible of maintaining the station reputation and market image. However, I worked under the department of Creative and Art with Sayed Ali Al-Najjar who controls the creative outcome, promotions, editing and studios.

The second day my supervisor received a request of TV IDs for the month of Muharram, which is one of the months that Muslims celebrate every year. However, I assigned to direct the IDs. My supervisor sat beside me as he went through the steps from the script and storyboard to the fine cut. At this stage I was a bit nervous, as it was a big responsibility to direct all the pre-production and production procedures in a new atmosphere and new country. We had a long time in brainstorming the idea and we come up with some ideas but with different directions comparing with the previous works. Then we chose a idea that suits our viability of location, actors, budget and time. Even though I am bad at drawing, I drew a simple storyboard in addition to the script. I broke down the script with all the actors, props and equipment we need. Then I started contact with a production designer and actors to make an agreement in terms of the price and availability. As the TV stations works, the supervisor and me sent a request for a DOP, lighting and studio booking.

The filming day was very smooth; we took around 8 hours to finish up the production design and filming. First, the professional production designer came and I introduced to him how exactly we seek the location. However, as we are filming 5 IDs with different decor we had a 30 min break between all of them to get the decor done and in the same time to introduce the next actor to the scene. We had 5 actors with a two children. Film children is completely unguaranteed and spontaneity is very hard to film as they don’t understand that we want that innocent and uninhibited play, so through an interpreter we asked them to continue what they were doing.. You have to wait for the special moment through the camera screen. The director have to interacts with the kid for a long time before the shoot However, one of the children was really scared of the dark location and the huge equipment in the studio and therefore he peed in his underwear !!. So we called his parents to come and take him and we replace his role with another child. One more thing I experienced that the filming plan never goes as planned but you still need to arrange the time especially if you have a big actors and call them in the right time with having someone to welcome them and introduce their role to them.

Also it was a great experience to attend the pilots of some TV shows and sit beside the director and see how the director in the operation room communicate with the broadcasters, anchors, guests, editors, graphics and sound editors in the same time. Also, how he deals with the problems while the show is on air. The atmosphere was intense inside the operating room but in the same time friendly. It really unbelievable how we see the TV shows as everything is in the right track and easy, but in the operating room it’s completely different.

Overall, the work attachment in such TV station was the best way to gain practical, real-world experience and the station was a perfect model for learning and experience. I learnt a lot, I had fun in addition it was a distinctive experience with two of the best professionals in the industry. After I graduate in the end 2012 from the Media program I plan to apply for jobs in the Media industry. This work attachment has certainly given me head start.  Strengths include the people I have met and networked during the attachments and I now also have a better idea of what to expect from a real job in the media industry.


June 7, 2012 - 2:30 am Comments Off

Role – as it evolved/changed throughout the project, your position and function within the group structure, the issues you faced and your part in formulating solutions.

My role in the project within the group is to concentrate on censorship in Bahrain. Due to the big difference between modern and democratic countries such as Australia and Singapore to a quite old and dictatorial country like Bahrain, I looked at it in depth and draft out an analysis of the social, cultural and political demographics of Bahrain as well. I examined what, how and why the government censorship in Bahrain with looking at some case studies such as The Kingdom, Lamha and Shouting In The Dark.

As our group topic is slightly different than the others by it’s obvious 3 parts division. However, each group member is carrying out a general position as “researcher on a specific country”. I was acting as a project manager but in very natural way with not trying to tell the people what to do and how, but just keep everything in the right track, managing meeting times and plans for our presentations and tutor meeting with Herald and Sherylin. For our presentation, I tried my best to make a good presentation comparing with the other groups. Therefore, I spent a long time with making a short teaser using After Effect and Final Cut Pro. In addition, I designed a PowerPoint slides to make our presentation attractive to the audience and easy to understand the topic.

Mark: HD

Progress – in your research capability, in observing your learning behaviours, in identifying your strengths and weaknesses.

Even though, in contrast with the other class groups, we finalized our topic since the first weeks, however till the last two week before the presentation we kept changing the title as we started with The Journey of the Media Makers but we ended up with just Censorship for Media Production Makers. With every week progress, we felt if we went with the journey of the media makers, we had to explore another issues such as copyright, funding and other obstacles.I think my strength was on in directing the ship to berth in the correct port. Also, I spent a long time in finding useful recourses for my part. It was very hard to find English recourses, therefore I started searching in Arabic but after contact some human rights and national societies in Bahrain I found a big amount of scholarly English recourses. One of the main problems with censorship in Bahrain, the vagueness of Bahrain laws and classification, hence I dived very deep and spent a long time to find them and still didn’t found a very clear laws. I think my weakness was on finding official or formal interviewees, I was afraid of going to any official people in Bahrain, as the situation right now is very dangerous and might threaten my safety when I go back.

Mark: HD

Strategies – research strategies, collaborative strategies and personal learning strategies, which ones did you try, how appropriate do you think your choices were, and what worked/what didn’t work?

Our group main strategy is finalizing the exact focus of our research. We started with a very big topic which the Journey of the Media Makers, but we ended up with focusing only on censorship. By filtering all the information we encounter and invest our time appropriately in research that is pertinent to our eventual project outcomes. Consequently, we moved forward and achieved our realistic goals for this project. Our contact Facebook group is the strategy that kept us up to date with the progress with other group members in this research project. We share videos and articles, discuss, arrange meeting and keep in touch. Although we had face-to-face meetings scheduled there was sometimes issues with the availability of a group member, which meant we had to reschedule a meeting to a later date. Overall these strategies assisted us into achieving our goals and all these strategies did work, but of course not always to plan.

Mark: D

Problems -  nominate a few key problems or difficulties that you faced and discuss how you resolved these.

As I said the main problem was on finding official or formal interviewees, I was afraid of going to any official people in Bahrain, as the situation right now is very dangerous and might threaten my safety when I go back. Therefore, I found interviewees just from one side. Also, one of the problems I faced in the beginning of my research is the lack of the English scholarly references in terms of copyright and censorship classification of Bahrain. Therefore I started searching in Arabic but after contacting some human rights organizations like Bahrain Center for Human Rights and National Societies in Bahrain I found a big amount of scholarly English recourses. One of the main problems with censorship in Bahrain is the vagueness of Bahrain laws and classification, hence I dived very deep and spent a long time to find them and still didn’t found a very clear laws.

Personally, time management is also proving to be problematic to the success of our group project. The amount of work that should be done to Media Industries was clear to me since week 3 but I didn’t feel I will be able to completely contribute the time that is needed in the research process, due to the big demands of other courses such as PP1, regardless the extra-curricular commitments. Therefore, our group used the strategy of self-directed nature and independent learning style in this course which make it easier to fall behind on research and useful for media practitioner in developing self-discipline and strong work ethic.

Mark: HD

Connections & intersections – what do you see as the value of this course, what have you learnt overall about your problem solving skills, your learning, your group interactions and your networking abilities? How do you see what you have learnt about yourself via the process the content of your research fitting into your future career development and future work?

Even though, I obtain many values in this course such as is improving my research abilities from finding sources to writing the findings, also working in a team environment by collaborating with others and solving group issues. However, the main valuable advantage I got is diving in the complicated industry that I’m going work in. I understood the intentions and purpose behind the censorship across completely different industries like Australia, Singapore and Bahrain and how they affect film producers in depth analysis, research and case studies.  Also approaching organizations, national societies and media professionals for assistants and contacting industry professionals has improved my networking abilities for the future in Bahrain industry. Eventually, I’m really happy that I made our my topic in relation to the industry I’m going to work with which really make the way clear for me to step in the industry after I graduate. I hope I can continue explore Bahrain and Middle East media industry next semester

Mark: HD

Overall: HD



June 1, 2012 - 4:32 pm Comments Off

1- Goals

I think it’s over, the time of learning is over, and it’s the time of setting our foot in the industry. Time to create and experience something creative, professional and inspiring. In our previous courses, we always had to create something from scratch or for unreal target, however Burnet Institute is a real and inspirational organisation that inspiring the communities and changing the people lives. Therefore, Burnet Institute provides the creativity and the objective for us. Personally, I would like to get the most out of PP2 as possible. I would like to produce several pieces regardless the amount of work and time it required as long as I am proud of and would add a great bonus for my CV and showreel.

I think my strongest area is my eye on camera. Mostly in the previous courses, I played the cinematographer role, not just because it was suitable for me but also because cinematography is my future focus path. However, my aim is to gain a productive experience and skills by producing professional and creative short pieces for Burnet Institute.

2- Production Type

Prior the tour in Burnet Institute and the direct brief, I assumed we have the complete freedom to choose the direction of the approach but within the guidelines of Burnet Institute. After the direct brief, we had a clear idea of the institute aims, which is funding and attract the public recognition of why, how and what is going on in the institute. Therefore, it can be clearly seen that they lacked of a fascinating interaction with people through their website or even in their events, seminars and trips around the world. I think they need two types of communication, first an Infomercial and educational promo shows how, why and what they actually do in the institute to communicate the fundraising target audience. Second is the television commercial to get the general public awareness of the institute and bring it to light. Both communications will work for each other benefits, funding and public awareness. Without the public attention, the funding would be harder, so to get the public attention they need a creative television commercial, then they need the Infomercial and educational piece to get the public and funding side trust. Hence, I would like first to produce a 3 to 4 minutes Infomercial promo, then a 3 television commercials with the same theme (example 1 and 2).

3- Example/ Inspirations

After a long time searching across Vimeo, Youtube and Bestadsontv, finally I picked the TV commercial for Levi’s Jeans of the Half-dead man singing Tainted Love in emergency by director Spike Jonez which is an incredible concept in terms of concept and technical. The commercial is about a guy goes into the emergency room wearing his Levi’s. While in there, the emergency room sounds seem to be playing Tainted Love by Soft Cell. He breaks out into music and the rest of the ER start joining him. It makes the audience kind of wish something like it would happen in real life. The commercial is comedy/action story in the format of the modern television commercial that have been adapted in order to gain as much audience as possible. The primary message through the events of the commercial is to show the jeans as comfortable and stylish. The script gradually climax in a dramatic way which grasp the audience attention to follow the story and expecting whether he will die or not and what is going to happen. The rhythm is amazing which divide built the story very well by using a pattern of three act structure; rising action, climax and unexpected resolution. The location is clean white and blue operations room, which is similar to Burnet Institute bright and modern white labs.

The music and sound is the main part of the piece, it is less quiet than the dramatic diegetic sound, which is the driving of the story. The hospital sound effects played a big role to create the atmosphere of the comedy/action commercial especially in the beginning. There is no graphic work in the commercial but just the logo in the end which I think better for the commercial style and mostly I hate the graphics and prefer the reality only.

Cinematography is amazing with using different angles and techniques such as bird-eye, point of view and shallow depth of field. The dolly movement is very smooth and fast sometimes like the final shot. Rather than going from Long > medium > close-up, the editing is great by going the opposite to slowly reveal the scene and create the suspense atmosphere.  The lighting is daylight indicates the operation room atmosphere with some dark parts to make the action and suspense In addition, to the focusable lights on the guy. The mise-en-scene shows more than one aspect of the room and doctor in each shot with involving as much as he can from doctors in the shot while they are engaging with singing.

another example

4- Advances Skills Workshops

I was so disappointed that I missed the Digital Super 35 camera workshop. The first workshop was cinematography and lighting by Robin. To be honest, I hoped it was more practical than theoretical. Personally, It wasn’t really useful in terms of practicing even though we did some practical practice. The theoretical element was pretty good especially deconstructing scenes in terms of lighting from films such as At Any Second and Seven.

The second workshop was the directing by Sian Davis, while she introduce herself I jumped to her website to see her works and I was amazed with her high professional works. It was a great opportunity to hear and learn from these professional guys. The workshop was useful in terms of understanding the script and the role of the turning points and introduction. She gave us a script and we analysed it together and figure out the characters developments, beats and the importance of dialogues and how some lines develop or flip the story upside down. In the end, these kind of workshops are very useful exactly what we need, I hope we see more in the next semester.

Hashim Sharaf

Individual Progress Report

April 19, 2012 - 12:47 am Comments Off

Together, my group members (Herald and Sherilyn) and I are conducting our Media Industries 1 research project on censorship clssification and copyright in Australia, Bahrain and Singapore to understand the intentions and purpose behind them and how they affect film producers through in depth analysis, research and case studies. After several discussions, we have decided to focus our research towards censorship classification and copyright only without going to abroad on other topics such as media ownership as it is very big and broad with many details. However, focusing on censorship and copyright will help us to understand the cultural context and direction of media production business across these countries – Australia, Bahrain and Singapore. In addition, to identify censorship and copyright and its regulations along with its impact applied in Australia, Bahrain and Singapore and its relation with media production business. This is so that we will know enough to set up our own media production business in future and adapt to the ever-changing media landscape as professional media practitioners.

My role in the project within the group is to concentrate on censorship and copyright laws in Bahrain. Due to the big difference between modern and democratic countries such as Australia and Singapore to a quite old and dictatorial country like Bahrain, I have to look at it in depth and draft out a brief analysis of the social, cultural and political demographics of Bahrain.

First in terms of copyright, I have to look at who, how and what is monitoring and enforcing it in Bahrain in addition to what is the government regulation in regards to copyright and how they deals with infringement of copyright policy with exploring some case studies of infringements. Also, I will look at the limitations and exceptions to copyright as well.

Second in terms of censorship, I will look at who, what and how the government regulate censorship classification in Bahrain with looking at the boundaries and taboos. Furthermore, I will find out how the government classifies local and foreign films with exploring some case studies and examples that treated differently in terms of religious, cultural, political, and moral values of the country.

After exploring copyright and censorship classification in Bahrain, I will conduct interviews with media practitioners and producers in Bahrain. The presenting of the perspectives of professional media practitioners and producers will interpret the research in on the real world.  I contacted to professional media practitioners from Bahrain, the first one is Entisar Radhi, the manager of Ryhanna online magazine and the second is Mohammed Alqassab, a film director in Midad for media production. Radhi has just launched her business last month and Mohammed is 5 years experienced in media field as a director. Then, we will compare and contrast the three countries (Australia, Singapore and Bahrain) in terms of copyright laws and censorship classifications with putting in consideration social, political and religious differences.

Regarding my strategies in research, primarily Wikipedia is my first choice, to get a basic impression and background with understanding what is copyright and censorship classification and the main issues surround them. Then, the RMIT University library catalogue is my next best bet especially with the new developments in the online databases. I will read sets of online journals to have a background how different people are defining copyright and censorship and to understand how these people think of copyright and censorship and their elements and relationship to the government regulation. Some might take a comparison between Eastern and Western contextual, to provide and present more “visual” to the idea to readers. However, others might take a particular case to examine the copyright laws and censorship classification, use and regulation in the traditional and current situations. As this project is not for “research” only, it is more likely a kind of experience and knowledge collecting for the future. Furthermore, Thursday group meeting, Skype and Facebook chat discussion has so far proven to be a good opportunity to catch up on everyone’s thoughts and ideas, which often helps to nudge the research along in the right direction.

Throughout the last two weeks, I have been reading some books and journals about copyright and censorship in general to obtain a background with understanding what is copyright and censorship classification and the main issues surround them. However, this interested and directed me to go in depth with some case studies in Middle East and particularly in Bahrain. Therefore, I found that the Hollywood film “The Kingdom”, which explores the “war on terror” through a fictional story happening in Saudi Arabia, has been banned in Bahrain. The Publication and Press Directorate of the Ministry on Information confirmed this act without indicating the reasons behind the censorship order. The film depicts an FBI investigation of two terrorist bombing attacks that took place in Saudi Arabia, in Riyadh in May 2003. “The Kingdom” belongs to a new wave of Hollywood movies that are using the uncertainties and confusion of the post 9/11 World Trade Centre attack as their backdrop. This was from a political perspective, however from a religious perspective Bahrain’s Information Affairs Authority (IAA) has pulled a Hollywood blockbuster from movie theatres amid complaints it contravenes Islamic values. The 3-D movie ‘Immortals’ was shown for five days in Bahrain before it has been banned. Also, another great point will be added to my research that last month Bahrain added to web censorship blacklist by Reporters Without Borders. “Bahrain offers a perfect example of successful crackdowns, with an information blackout achieved through an impressive arsenal of repressive measures: exclusion of the foreign media, harassment of human rights defenders, arrests of bloggers and citizens (one of whom died behind bars), prosecutions and defamation campaigns against free expression activists, disruption of communications,” the report said.

One of the problems I’m facing is the lack of the English scholarly references in terms of copyright and censorship classification of Bahrain. To solve this problem, I might search for English scholarly references in terms of Middle East in general and relate it to Bahrain. In terms of our project and it’s relevance to the media industry and how it may connect to other research projects, I think as media students that are about to set our foot in the industry, one of our main concerns is the issues involving producing, publishing and marketing our work to the industry. The fact that different countries have different cultures, policies and laws that govern their society, copyright and censorship laws may vary, which in turn affects how they are being consumed and vice versa. Therefore, in order for us to be successful media practitioners in future, it is important for us to have adequate knowledge about these issues so that we can produce content that is appropriate for the public.

This word worth all the hard effort :)

October 28, 2011 - 12:28 am Comments Off

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