Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Truth is Free...

(...as are so many things on the web these days (or at least seemingly so :))

Thus readeth the tag line of this amazing site for free documentaries that a friend shared last night. Freedocumentaries.org has about 125 documentaries that are also categorized by themes and regions of the world.

I spotted some well-known ones like those by Michael Moore and the Century of Self series from BBC, but there are several others that I know I will be watching over the coming days (and nights). WE: Arundhati Roy seems promising, as also this one titled The Slow Poisoning of India (it's all about one's context, isn't it?) -
"a 26-minute documentary film depicting the effects of modern pesticide use on local farmers. India is one of the largest users of pesticide in Asia and also one of the largest manufactures. Farmers often use the wrong chemicals, while others overuse."
Most of the documentaries load from Google Video or youtube (the shorter teasers/trailers) so I guess all this site does is point to all the freely available documentaries already up on Google Video. (Just an educated guess that it was not the other way around - it wasn't these guys that put up the stuff on Google Video and then pointed to it from here...)

Which made me curious about the rationale behind freedocumentaries.org (on their 'About Us' page) -

"a site where anyone with an internet connection can watch a movie to educate themselves or simply explore another perspective whenever they please. These movies aren't just for education but are also for entertainment.

As a secondary objective freedocumentaires.org allows independent filmmakers to have their message heard by viewers that they may not normally reach.

Our goal is to have everyone that watches a film at freedocumentaries.org learn something; whether it be a new perspective on a topic, simply understanding a conflict, or being more accepting of a certain belief system. We are proud to say that the vast majority of people that watch our films are glad they did so. In fact many people become addicted to watching documentaries after seeing a movie on our site.
Whatever the rationale, I'm glad for this effort, and hope teachers and parents will use it to educate themselves, their students/kids, and use these to trigger discussions and debate....

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