Theghostsinourmachine Case Study of a Live & Unfolding Cross-Media Documentary Project GO
Why? An Exceptionally Smart Use of Social MediaThe Team behind The Ghosts in Our Machine have led an exemplary social media campaign, with extensive community reach-out, network building, merchandizing & excellent cross-platform integration. Called a ‘live & unfolding cross-media documentary project,’ their passionate commitment & engagement across platforms makes theirs a project to watch.
Director’s StatementTHE GHOSTS IN OUR MACHINE is a journey of discovery intowhat is a complex social dilemma, one that needs to beconsidered morally signiﬁcant. In essence, humans havecleverly categorized non-human animals into three parts:domesticated pets, wildlife, and the ones we don’t like to thinkabout: the ghosts in our machine. What is revealed is acollective cognitive dissonance: Why do we value wildlife andour companion animals but not the billions of animals bred andused by global industries? Liz Marshall, Director
genesisofghostsToronto-based documentary maker, Liz Marshall’s “The expectations that I put on myself are high,multi-media documentary features the lives of yes, because with every new project you want it toanimals through the lens of animal photographer be as effective, or more effective than the last. TheJo-Anne McArthur. issue of animal rights has a social stigma attached to it, and so part of what Ghosts is attempting toFellow producers Nina Beveridge & Liz Marshall do is shatter the image that animal rights activistswere offered a development deal by Documentary are a bunch of terrorists who care more about theChannel in the spring of 2011. rights of chickens than they do about the rights of children (thats an extreme and ridiculous sounding example, but I have heard it more than once!). The Ghosts in Our Machine is part of a new wave of media helping to usher a new understanding of what "animal rights" is.” Liz Marshall, Director Fall 2010, The Ghosts in Our Machine takes shape through conversations with animal rights photographer Jo-Anne McArthur
productiontimelineidea begins research, branding & development post production website prototype phase 2 project idea explored social media launched film production immersive with Jo-anne mcarthur story early development demo website launched magazine themed completed phase 1 website launched pitch, hotdocs april 20112004 Winter-Spring 2011 June-Sept 2011 June 2012- Jan 2013 2009 Spring 2011 Jan-Sept 2012 2013 Oct 2010-June 2011 Spring 2011 June 2012 April 2011 http://www.tmcresourcekit.com/
socialmediatimelineFacebook Group hoodies t-shirt design nikki’s ghoststarted voting story = viral 1st Trailer vimeo ghost free Ghost free trailers journey vimeo demo journeytwitter launched featured ghost Indiegogo story campaign dev. fundedMarch 27, 2011 March 2011 April-May 2012 Jan-Feb 2012 March 30, 2011 May 23, 2011 July 2011 July 2012 Apr 13, 2011 June 2011 August 2011 http://www.tmcresourcekit.com/
Early developmentphaseProject idea dates back to 2004The development phase runs from October 2010 –December 2011•Winter/Spring 2011 - branding, research, &prototype website underway•Spring 2011 - Social Media sites established &community reach out begins•April- May 2011 - pitch materials launched intime for the 2011 Hot Docs Documentary Festivalin Toronto•January 2012 - production begins on live &unfolding cross-media documentary project
HotDocs Pitch Material Strongendorsements‘Liz and Nina worked with a small team to build a ﬂash website, it served asan ambient cinematic sales pitch to express the ﬁlm’s overall tone and vision.It featured 16 strong endorsements by some prominent Animal Ambassadors:activists, artists, doctors, scientists and others.’
HotDocs Pitch Material videoteasersMaggie’s Story A Featured Ghost Story social media updates on Maggie’s progress...
Teasers vimeoTrailers Demo-Trailer commissioned byTrailers 1 & 2 launched on Documentary Channel inMay 23, 2011 on YouTube Development Phase 2
Multi-Platformmerchandisingearly philosophy of project: “Property or Sentient Being?” Marketing exclusive for team soon to be available as a ‘vintage item’
Updates crossposting Human subject, Jo-Anne McArthurin featured updates across platforms
Early Reach Outbuildnetwork connections with other like-minded organizations builds community & extends reach via networks
Ongoing Connectingsharingevolutionkey moments & successes shared with community
Call To Actionreachingout fans are invited to become advocates & promoters of the project creating greater networked impact
Indiegogocrowdfunding • campaign ran May-July 2011 • video trailers cross-posted to Vimeo, Facebook, YouTube • Approached by CowJones Industrials Vegan Boutique NY & Roots of Compassion, Hamburg who are inspired to get involved • ran contests to win promoted goods & gift baskets with Ghost Free items • $13,600 Raised! $12,000 Goal!
Going Viral nikki’sstory •Featured Ghost Story, Nikki, is launched the week of Jan 23, 2012 •Fans love this video & the sharing begins•By the week of Feb. 27 2012 the video hashad 5841 total loads & 3526 total play•To date - Oct. 2012 - Nikki’s Story has had atotal of 16600 loads.
Call To Action ghost-freejourneydevelopment •The Ghosts Consumer Challenge began on Facebook. •Initially the GCC was a very conversational 10 day long journey, engaging the community in sharing experiences, running every month on Facebook•In July 2011, the GCC evolved & became the ofﬁcial Ghost Free Journey, launching withthe magazine style website.•Participants are supported by coaches in 5 day journeys, which run every other month. Itnow runs with participants chosen by lottery.•Donna Oakes, fan & supporter, of CowJones Industrials Vegan Boutique NY, becomes acoach.
Call To Action ghost-freejourney “The 5-DAY GHOST-FREE JOURNEY (GFJ) is an educational, fun, supportive and community building initiative featured bimonthly here on our GFJ Blog.The GFJ is facilitated by Donna Oakes & Rosemary Tarentino Foos, together they gently coach a chosen participant on a memorable and customized 5-day vegan challenge. Designed to inspire a broad audience about the value ofDonna Oakes & becoming a Ghost-Free consumer, for the Rosemary Tarentino Foos become animals, each participant is chosen through Ghost Free Journey coaches an automated lottery system.”
Merchandising designcompetitionDesigner Michele Gorman donatesher time in creating designs for the T-Shirt logo contest boosting fan engagement April-May 2012
Ongoing animalambassadors SETH TIBBOTT - FEATURED ANIMAL AMBASSADOR. President and Founder Turtle Island Foods and Tofurky. Photo credit: courtesy Leilani Münter.• The Ghosts in Our Machine continues to expand the project’s animal ambassadors. Most recently,Seth Tibbott, President and Founder, Turtle Island Foods and Tofurky, was welcomed as an AnimalAmbassador• "We celebrate THE GHOSTS IN OUR MACHINE cross-platform documentary, and are excited tosupport its Animal Ambassador program. The Ghosts documentary highlights the brilliant work ofJo-Anne McArthur, one of the great heroines of our time, whose photography helps us all to see farmanimals as fellow travellers on our journey, worthy of our love, care and respect." - Seth Tibbott.
Ongoing animalambassadors• With over 25 Animal Ambassadors, Canadian & international, TGIOM is able to spread its message toexpanding communities• Animal Ambassadors include: Maude Barlow, Barbara Gowdy, Emm Gryner, Jason Priestly, Camilla Scott &many others.
Feature Documentary Theghostsinourmachine•THE GHOSTS IN OUR MACHINE – • Through the heart and photographicDOCUMENTARY is a cinematic feature lens of protagonist Jo-Anne McArthurlength ﬁlm that illuminates the lives of we become intimately familiar with aindividual animals living within or cast of non-human animal characters.rescued from the machine of our modern •Release date: 2013world.
immersivestory “...an upcoming Immersive Story, created by Webby award winning Interactive Art Director’s The Goggles (Adbusters, This is Pine Point), will be prominently featured on the secret..... website: www.theghostsinourmachine.com. The Immersive Story will be released along with the ﬁlm in 2013 ....[as] a companion to the feature documentary, it will inspire people to go further with the subject matter.”The Immersive Story will exist onlineas an interactive experience...
keyinsightsIt is community: audience, fans, followers, supporters, that makes a social issue cross-media projectlike ours successful and dynamic. Since the inception of The Ghosts In Our Machine our communityhas cheered us on and has symbiotically helped to shape our understanding of the issues, and thetone of the project.By revealing our process to the world; unfolding layer by layer, we are fostering an interactive long-term relationship with the public about an issue that we all (ourselves included) need to address. Thejourney is what is most compelling to us. The Ghosts community inspires us to forge ahead, we arebeholden.For the Ghosts.Liz Marshall & Nina BeveridgeGhosts Media Inc.Toronto