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POV Hackathon 4 Set for July 27-28, 2013; Call for Participants Open Through May 31

POV (Point of View), PBS’ award-winning independent documentary series, took over the offices of Huge, Inc. in Brooklyn, N.Y. for the weekend-long POV Hackathon 3, from April 13-14, 2013. POV challenged five teams of filmmakers, developers and designers to “hack” documentary films, create working interactive prototypes and pitch them at a presentation evaluated by Marc Weiss, Web Lab executive producer and POV founder; Michelle Byrd, co-president of Games for Change; and Karen Helmerson, New York State Council on the Arts electronic, media and film program director. The teams selected Portraits of the Enemies, a Web-based documentary that juxtaposes portraits of enemy fighters, as the Participants’ Choice Award winner for best prototype.

Mike Tringe, co-founder of CreatorUp!; Nicole Breskin, senior product manager at The New York Times; and Philippe Pierre, director of operations at social media agency Socialbomb, served as mentors to the teams throughout the weekend.

The next POV Hackathon will be held Saturday-Sunday, July 27-28, 2013. Applications for POV Hackathon 4 are now open at Deadline: Friday, May 31 at 12 Midnight ET.

All POV Hackathon 3 projects and prototypes are now available for viewing at View photos from the Hackathon on POV’s Flickr account.

“We are thrilled to have fostered these partnerships between filmmakers and technologists,” said Adnaan Wasey, director of POV Digital. “They are showing us all how we can push the boundaries of storytelling by sharing their works in progress and the technology behind them.”

The POV Hackathon 3 projects included Participants’ Choice Award winner Portraits of the Enemies, @home, The Refugee Registry, Return to Elwha and V-Card Experience Engine, which included team members from the POV Hackathon 2 project connected to the documentary How to Lose Your Virginity. Explore the prototypes on the POV blog.

Many of the POV Hackathon 3 projects worked to build on the awareness generated by a completed or soon-to-be-released documentary film and translate “clicktivism” into activism, with digital projects that would allow people to get involved with homeless causes, connect refugees with legal advocates and participate in an ongoing conversation around sexuality.

“I realized that a multimedia approach would allow the audience to interact with the complexities of [ecosystem] restoration,” said participant Jason Jaacks. “I wanted to come to the Hackathon to figure out the most engaging and creative way to inspire people to care. The POV Hackathon presents an incredible opportunity for filmmakers to collaboratively redefine how films are made.”

About the POV Hackathon 3 Projects:

Portraits of the Enemies is a Web-based documentary that juxtaposes portraits of enemy fighters. International photojournalist Karim Ben Khelifa worked with technologists Maria Rabinovich and Jack Kalish to create an online installation in which viewers can select portraits and hear testimony from soldiers in Kashmir, India, Israel and Palestine.

@home combines documentary film, social media and a real-world game to convey one simple idea: Homelessness can be solved and we are all part of the solution. Filmmaker Danny Alpert teamed up with game designer Heidi Boisvert and Alchemy50’s technologist Josh Klobe and art director Brandon Forant.

The Refugee Registry is a digital initiative connected to The List Project that serves two specific audiences: refugees and lawyers. For POV Hackathon 3, the team–comprised of The List filmmaker Sean Flynn, technologist Cameron Hickey, filmmaker Elise Brouwer and designer Laura Scherling–worked on creating a database that uses SMS to connect at-risk refugees to lawyers who can make a difference.

Return to Elwha is a Web-based documentary project that follows the largest dam-removal in U.S. history. Filmmaker Jason Jaacks, visual journalist Eric Reyna and developer Peggy Bustamante created an interactive site in which viewers may explore the project’s impact while traversing the Elwha River in Washington State.

The V-Card Experience Engine is a digital crowd-sourced storytelling project about the myth and meaning of virginity in American culture. The team included How to Lose Your Virginity filmmaker Therese Schechter, associate producer Ellice Litwak, programmer-journalist Steven Melendez and interactive designer Cori Schattner.

About POV
Produced by American Documentary, Inc. and beginning its 26th season on PBS in 2013, POV is the longest-running showcase on American television to feature the work of today’s best independent documentary filmmakers. POV has brought more than 365 acclaimed documentaries to millions nationwide. POV films have won every major film and broadcasting award, including 32 Emmys, 15 George Foster Peabody Awards, 10 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, three Academy Awards® and the Prix Italia. Since 1988, POV has pioneered the art of presentation and outreach using independent nonfiction media to build new communities in conversation about today’s most pressing social issues. Visit

POV has the honor of receiving a 2013 MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. Major funding for POV is provided by PBS, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the desJardins/Blachman Fund and public television viewers. Funding for POV’s Diverse Voices Project is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Special support provided by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. POV is presented by a consortium of public television stations, including KQED San Francisco, WGBH Boston and THIRTEEN in association with WNET.ORG.

POV Digital (
POV’s award-winning website extends the life of our films online with interactive features, interviews, updates, video and educational content, as well as listings for television broadcasts, community screenings and films available online. The POV Blog is a gathering place for documentary fans and filmmakers to discuss films and get the latest news.

About Huge
Huge is a digital agency that provides business strategy, design, marketing and technology services to some of the world’s largest businesses and best-known brands. The company is known for successfully harmonizing user needs and business goals to create industry-changing digital experiences for its clients. Huge has offices based in the United States, Europe and Latin America, and is part of the Interpublic Group of Companies. For more information, visit @hugeinc on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn

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POV Pressroom
Produced by American Documentary, Inc., POV is public television’s premier showcase for nonfiction films. Since 1988, POV has been the home for the world’s boldest contemporary filmmakers, celebrating intriguing personal stories that spark conversation and inspire action. Always an innovator, POV discovers fresh new voices and creates interactive experiences that shine a light on social issues and elevate the art of storytelling. With our documentary broadcasts, original online programming and dynamic community engagement campaigns, we are committed to supporting films that capture the imagination and present diverse perspectives.