50 Years Connecting People Who Care: Lessons from 1970 That Still Matter

I’m feeling vulnerable as I step into owning my history as a media innovator. Can it really be 50 years?!

In doing this week’s Video Mojo, I discovered that “Connecting People Who Care” is more than just words for me. It’s a thread that somehow flows through all of my work.

Click above to watch this week’s Video Mojo video blog & podcast episode.

The meaning of this phrase is also important because it is an invitation to take action, to make a difference with what we do, to step into the spotlight and in front of the camera. As Scoop Nisker used to say, “If you don’t like the news, go out and make some of your own!”

​This week’s episode unpacks all of this in less than 5 minutes and also has some pretty interesting photos from back in the day. 🙂 Click above to watch now.
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About Video Mojo
Video Mojo is a weekly video blog and podcast hosted by award-winning media innovator, Jon Leland (that’s me!). It combines timeless marketing principles with a playful exploration on the “bleeding edge” of digital video & marketing.

Resource Link from this episode:
“The Revolutionary Resonances of Dancing Bear”:
Another essential story connecting 1970 with today
https://medium.com/@jonleland/the-revolutionary-resonances-of-dancing-bear-cd887eced90c 

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Thanks!

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

50 Years Connecting People Who Care: Lessons from 1970 That Still Matter

Hi there and welcome to another edition of Video Mojo, my video blog and podcast that combines timeless marketing principles with state-of-the-art technologies, tools and tips. 

I usually say that I’ve been a media innovator for decades, but the truth is that it’s been 50 years! And that’s kind of a vulnerable thing for me to say because people can figure out that, hey, I’m more than 70 years old. The innovation and the process also is what fuels today’s podcast and this episode and why am I doing this in the first place. So that’s a thread I want to make. What is 1970 and the network that I started, a radio network that I started in 1970, have to do with what I am doing here in 2020 And there really is a solid connection. 

So, yes, I have been a media innovator for 50 years. In 1970 I planted the seeds of the first narrowcast network. It was a radio network that was targeted to a specific audience and that wasn’t being done back in those days. I was up in Seattle, there was a trial called the “Seattle 8” and I started doing the new feeds to the Pacifica stations. This led me to doing news feeds to Pacifica stations, other lister supported stations, FM rock stations like KSan in San Francisco, WBCN in Boston, WNEW in New York. There’s a whole bunch of them and dozens of college stations around the anti-war movement. 

So what does that have to do with today? Well, the reality is that I’m really looking—and still exploring and still learning—how does it work to enable people? I mean I am into empowering people to use the power of new media and these amazing tools. The fact is that the iPhone that I am shooting this video on is shooting a quality of video that wasn’t even imaginable in those days. And we all have this kind of capability in our pocket. How does that democratization of media help people to tell better stories? Help people to make better connections in communities of people who care? 

So that’s what I am exploring. 

I call this program sometimes a “joyful exploration” because I’m still learning: how do we connect people? 

Back in 1970, I was connecting people who cared about the anti-war movement, who wanted to spread news about other people who were demonstrating. And today I’m doing this video blog and podcast in order to see what happens. How do people connect when they have the courage to take action? And when they have the courage to express their voice, to let their voice come forward and to use these amazing, powerful new tools. 

So there really is a thread that I really wasn’t even aware of until (#1) I had the courage to say you know, I have been doing this for 50 years and, yes, I am more than 70 years old and (#2) There is a power to communication. There is a power to authentic connection and there is, in particular, a power to people who want to take action and are willing to express themselves and get themselves out there… whether it’s in the streets, on YouTube, wherever. 

So, I want your feedback. But even more than that, I want your participation. 

Let me know what is working for you and what is not. 

Back in the day when I was doing media, in the ’70s and ’80s, I had a guy named Scoop Nisker on a TV show that we did. And Scoop used to always close is radio shows with this line, he would say:

“If you don’t like the news, go out and make some of your own.”

So, that’s what this is about. 

And then also, I wanted to share another quote with you because one of my clients, The Soul of Money Institute, we shared this quote from Daniel Berrigan.

Daniel Berrigan said,

“The difference between doing something and doing nothing is everything” 

So get out there and make the news, make your own news, and I look forward to working with you. I look forward to collaborating with you, and I look forward to hearing about what works and what doesn’t work. 

Next week I’m going to get more specific about some video tools so we will try a whole other kind of episode, but I look forward to your feedback and as always I’m really grateful for your kind attention. 

I’ll see you next week!

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