Why start a video archive of ordinary minutes?
The Mass Observation project has been a great source of inspiration for JamJar Story. It began in the UK in 1937 when a poet, a film-maker, and an anthropologist decided that the press was not accurately reporting public opinion following the abdication of Edward VIII.
Almost 500 diarists across the country kept track of their lives for the project, a few throughout the entire Second World War. This first phase of the project ended in 1949 but it has been revived in various incarnations since then. We want to use modern technology to continue the founder's project to make 'an anthropology of ourselves'.
Secondly, we want to fill the gaps of the historical record we're currently keeping. You might think that any future social researchers looking back to this era might have more data than they could handle, what with so many social media posts from so many individuals. But we don't think that those sources get close enough to giving a clear picture. We want to record what people are actually doing - not what they want people to think they're doing. This archive will capture truth in all its mundane glory.
We've even given a TEDx talk on the topic, which you can find on YouTube here!
How can you get involved?
We are looking for people across the UK to get involved and contribute to this newly developing archive. You can film on a phone, on a webcam, or even a camcorder, for those of you who still have one!
All you need to do is sign up here - www.jamjarstory.com/sign-up and film a short video that you feel captures everyday life for you. The more the merrier! Anything over 30 seconds is usually helpful.
As a thank you, we'll pay you £1 for every video you upload on certain topics, which can all be found, along with the payment scheme rules, here: www.jamjarstory.com/rewards. You can even recommend friends to upload videos and we'll pay you both for them!