Thank you firstly for looking at both pieces and secondly for writing about how you felt. This kind of feed back is really critical for my development of future projects.
I first found out about leprosy in Vietnam around 11 months ago. First, I met a large group of people that made me believe that the people at Van Mon currently live with leprosy and are suffering from it still. They also made me believe that leprosy is spreading like wildfire in the countryside of Vietnam.
After some research and meeting a different group of people, I learned otherwise. Leprosy is under control in Vietnam with only 500 new cases a year and they are all treated and sent back home within 1 – 2 weeks of visiting a hospital.
The reporter in me wanted to set this straight. I wanted to give people a true perspective about these villages and what they need. I felt that BOB, who has worked with them for years, gave that.
I know the piece can feel rushed, but there really is so much more information that I could split the Van Mon Piece into two. I didn’t want to do that because i know how dry reportage can be. It also seemed at the time, that i was hitting a length barrier with the Van Mon piece as well. I was getting over 7 – 8 min in my first edit of the interview. So I decided what was the key information I wanted people to walk away with when they watched Van Mon. Health Care, quality of life and lack of food and money.
I also felt that if I didn’t do the Van Mon piece that people would not really understand the Bop piece. They might think he still lives with leprosy, or want to know how many more people have leprosy. I also feel that people might look at this Multimedia in a reverse direction after watching Bop, they will want to know more and then click on Van Mon.
I’m always trying to keep non-linear storytelling an option.
About your suggestion of combining the 2 stories. I would do that for a movie screening but on the internet people get distracted too easily.
The rule of thumb is keep your multimedia below 6 min unless it is really compelling. So for the internet i cut it into chapters instead on making one long piece.
Again thank you for your review. It truly will help me plan better for my next work.