By the end of this studio, Olivia and I completed a first draft of a podcast on gun violence. We choose gun violence because Olivia and I realized we never hear about people dying from gang violence even if it's just five miles away. We knew that we wanted our podcast to use personal stories and raise awareness on the realities of life in “violent” neighborhoods.
With our podcast’s goal in mind, we began contacting people including Robert DeLeo, the House Speaker, True-See Allah, Tim Crellins, and other advocates. We wanted to interview ex-gang members and victims of gang violence, but no one wanted to talk about their experiences. We traveled to Dorchester District Court to interview Issa Bibbins, who introduced us to Anthony Owens, the Clerk Magistrate; their two voices shaped our entire podcast.
In this studio, our goal was to make a podcast that covered a topic that was relevant and important. We started by brainstorming for multiple hours and going through each idea to see which was suitable. After many, many discussions we finally agreed that covering teen substance abuse would be the best option for us and our circumstances. More specifically we decided to cover the gap between what parents know about their kids and their substance habits , and what their kids are actually doing.
Our circumstances included limited time and resources, so we figured we would have a much easier time getting sources (ex: our friends, and friends parents) doing teen substance abuse, than we would doing something that required sources we didn’t know who were potentially unreliable. Even futher, our friends would give us the honest truth- knowing they had security- and we would also potentially have acess to their parents.
The interview process was a great experience for us. We interviewed our own parents, parents of our friends, and many friends that are our age. The interviews weren’t too long individually but as we started to interview more and more people it became slightly tedious to keep listening to so much information that sounded so similar. It was very fun to interview different parents. The topic of drinking and drugs is not so common when it comes to speaking to our friends parents, and our parents. Because of that, it was a very fun experience to partake in. Because this topic is slightly more common when we're talking around our friends it felt pretty normal when we interviewed them. We thought that was actually in our favor because it made the interviews much more natural which assured that the information we got was organic.
The editing process began with extensive listening and relistening of over an hour of interviews. After knowing what we had to work with we began thinking through how we wanted our story to go. After making a timeline of events and very thoroughly detailing how we were going to tell our story we began going to work. At first we just found the best clips of each interview. Immediately following that we recorded our voices for transition pieces and our intro and outro. Next we chose our songs, which we immediately knew we wanted to be comedic to add some fun to our piece. After everything was ready to go we began piecing everything together. After endless hours of making our podcast it became time to do the final edits. This was definitely the hardest part. It took us a couple of days to really fine tune our piece and make it something we were proud of. In the end all the work that was frustrating, became very worth it.
By the end of this studio, Olivia and I completed a first draft of a podcast on gun violence. On the first day the whole podcasting studio brainstormed a huge list of topics, but we managed to narrow it down to three: white washing, drunk driving, and gun control. Gun control is a huge topic and after presenting our ideas to the studio, Ben Snyder helped us narrow the topic down to gun violence in urban neighborhoods. We choose gun violence because Olivia and I realized we never hear about people dying from gang violence even if it's just five miles away. We knew that we wanted our podcast to use personal stories and raise awareness on the realities of life in “violent” neighborhoods.
With our podcast’s goal in mind, we began contacting people including Robert DeLeo, the House Speaker, True-See Allah, Tim Crellins, and other advocates. We wanted to interview ex-gang members and victims of gang violence, but no one wanted to talk about their experiences. Ben Snyder helped us get a hold of Issa Bibbins, who helped shape and voiced most of our podcast. On Friday, Monday, and Tuesday we researched our topic: looking at newspaper articles, statistics, and Boston’s history of gun violence. Our first interview was with Tim Crellin, the Vicar of St Stephens in the South End, where a beloved member of their congregation was shot to death. Even though the interview went well and we got alot of great information, unfortunately due to time none of it made it into the final cut. The next day, we traveled to Dorchester District Court to interview Issa Bibbins. The whole day was a wonderful experience that taught us a lot. Issa Bibbins also went out of his way to introduce us to Anthony Owens, the Clerk Magistrate, and although we improvised this interview, it gave us some of the best commentary.
Thursday was crunch time and we had to edit over 40 minutes of interviews. Olivia and I split the work, so each person went through about forty minutes of content. Next I found breaking news clips all talking about gun violence victims, ranging from school shootings to a five year old boy, to use as our introduction. We also had to record voice overs and transitions to include statistics on gun violence, like that 88% of all teen homicides are gun related.
Our overall experience was wonderful, we just wished that we had more time. We didn’t have any personal connections to our subject, so it was really hard to organize interviews since we were contacting people only a few days in advance. The editing process was also very tiring and time consuming, we had to do work outside of Nuvu to complete our podcast in time. This podcast pushed Olivia and I outside of our comfort zones with talking to grown adults over the phone, organizing interviews in advance, and traveling to Dorchester alone. We also built up more confidence and learned how to present ourselves professional.
Project Description: We want our podcast to bring to the forefront, domestic violence, a topic that is often overlooked, despite the fact that it happens to women every day, in all demographics, in every part of the world.
Bridget and I after a lot of brainstorming decided on the topic of domestic violence. We then contacted my mother and things started to click into place for us, because earlier in the week we were worried since we didn’t have any people to interview and we had very little material to work with. However, after contacting my mother we took a field trip for our podcast. Bridget and I took the train to Legal Services, where my mother works and she set up 3 interviews for the day. She had managed to get us an in-person interview with a survivor and 2 in person interview with advocates. In between interviews we went to a lecture/luncheon and learned about “Domestic Violence as a Social Determinant of Health”, the lecture was about the science behind how domestic violence affects physical and mental health. It was a great piece of background knowledge for us as we continued to finish our story. We first sat down with the survivor, because we had never done an interview where the subject may have felt some discomfort, it was hard. I was later told by my mother that what really helped make the survivor more comfortable was the fact that we sent in our questions ahead of time. During the interview it was a tense, because I had to ask follow up questions. I had to figure out how to word the questions so that they were effective but also took into the account the experiences and feeling of my interviewee.
The next day we were tasked with going through all of the audio and cutting it down; it was quite the challenge considering we had over 50 minutes worth of audio to edit. It was good to feel like we had a large portion of material to choose from. The most helpful thing was being able to map out on the board what direction we wanted to take the podcast in. Bridget and I edited all day, at the end of the day we were tired but fulfilled. Once we figured out the narrative we wanted to make, we decided to start the podcast with a recording of a 911 call, we thought this would really pull the listener(s) in. We were really pleased with the overall effect it had. We had great material but the transitions were hard, we struggled to find music that wasn’t over dramatized yet, still capture the seriousness that comes with the topic. Our final product was something we are really proud of and it definitely communicates what we want. We learned a lot of from the experience of editing and also spending a day at Legal Services interviewing, it was very intense experience that taught us a lot of difference skills.
In this studio, you will learn about storytelling and audio journalism by creating your own compelling and detailed radio podcast. This will be a challenging and fun studio that will require journalistic research, outreach, critical thinking, character development and storytelling, along with technical skills in audio recording and editing; all put together into a coherent, thoughtful and technically-excellent piece.