First, I cannot thank the backers of our emphas.is fundraising effort enough for your pledges of support. We are over the halfway point to reach our goal of $5,050, which will cover the hard costs of travel and accommodation to complete this 30-minute documentary. If we exceed our goal, we will apply extra funds against the cost of post-production and distribution of the finished piece. As we near the end of this campaign, I want to address some good questions and also some issues that have come up during this fundraising process:
Q: Chance Multimedia is a for-profit company, right? Why do you need funding for this project?
Yes, Chance Multimedia is a for-profit entity that earns money producing video and photo content for both nonprofit and commercial clients.
Alternately, the Living with the Dead story, which we (James and Jessica Chance) have been funding and working on independently since 2008, is completely unrelated to our for-profit business model. (James did receive support from POYi in 2011 to finish the photography for this story, but the video documentary portion of the project has been 100% self-funded until now.)
If our goal is funded in total, we will continue to invest hundreds of hours of unpaid time to see this project to completion. The pledges we seek will only cover hard travel costs for two people (flight, basic accommodation and basic meals for one month) while we are on the ground in Manila.
We will receive no funds unless our goal is reached in its entirety.
Q: Wouldn’t that money be better used to help the people in the cemetery?
That is a complicated question. We see our role as storytellers and documentarians. With several years of history and relationships in the cemetery community, we feel we’re in a good position to illustrate the challenges residents face as well as the solutions they have created for themselves in the face of pressing global issues.
We do hope the story we are able to tell with the community members will perhaps inspire those in a philanthropic position to take responsible action, which we feel they would be more equipped to do than we are as independent documentarians.
Issue: I tried to donate, but the site didn’t work/ it didn’t go through/ I ran into problems and gave up.
Thank you so much for trying. We’ve heard this from multiple people. Gratefully, when we’ve heard reports of specific issues we’ve been able to work with the folks at emphas.is to resolve them. Please, if you try to pledge and have trouble, let us know, and we’ll work on fixing the problem. We thank everyone who has persevered for your patience.
Q: What are Incentives?
There are incentives (things we give back to you to thank you for your pledge) at every level of support. Incentives include photo outtakes and thank you postcards featuring images from the project, a DVD or digital download of the film, prints, your name in the credits, and more. We're even offering a two-day, customized multimedia workshop for an organization wishing to support the production of this story.
Plus, the most basic pledge ($10) and every increasing level will grant you access to “The Making of Zone,” where we’ll document the challenges and surprises that are sure to come as we create this documentary.
Please pledge, and be a part of this project! Many thanks to those of you that have already! If you have more questions for us, feel free to leave them in the comments.