One of the great experiences of this show in the third season is the ability to push through and make some really great content, most hit the TV screen, some just couldn’t fit and hit the YouTube channel, and managed to digital life. Two of those stories were some of my favourites, Jetconnect and Abortion Vigil which I produced with the wonderful Mon Schafter.
Certainly my favourite story this season was I’m A Climate Scientist. It managed to cause trouble all around the world. Racking up posts in Fast Company, Huffington Post, Greenpeace, MoveOn, as well as global press too. I just love this article in Holland’s biggest broadsheet.
I recently got this feed back from Penny Hawe in Canada:
Congratulations to the makers of the rap video, “I’m a climate scientist”. It was shown at the plenary opening session of the 40th annual meeting of the Canadian Science Writers Association today in Calgary (heartland of the oil industry). People stood and cheered. It was shown in relation to a discussion of the ethical responsibilities regarding how ‘sides’ of stories
are (and should be) constructed.As an ex-pat Aussie in Canada I was delighted (and proud!). Thank you.
The initial idea stemmed from being annoyed while watching Q And A one night and noticing that while people were passionate about climate change, they prefaced everything the caveat “I’m not a climate scientist but….”
According to Media Monitors the phrase “I’m not a climate scientist but…” was only uttered a few times this year in Australian media, for some reason I felt like I had heard it much more often. Perhaps it was the echo chamber of twitter that solidified the expression in my brain. For me it had become a standard line that gave the “expert” a license to express any kind of dribbling nonsensical science at the truth’s expense.
So began the challenge of combating this phrase, with fact and funny. In order to do this I wanted a piece that had all the authority from actual climate scientists, but also ballsy enough to disrupt the current media conversation, because talking heads are sooooo boring! Who would have thought that people calmly discussing the end of the world would be boring
The result was “I’m A Climate Scientist” a Beastie Boys-esque hip hop track. It was written by myself, Duncan Elms (who also did all the After Effects work) with help from Prof. Roger Jones, and Dr. Katrin Meissner two of the world’s leading climate scientists who just happen to be working in Australia.
Two side notes, I’m A Climate Scientist was played across Australian TV, but none more important than, The Bolt Report on Network Ten, as well as his well read blog.
Twitter blew up, then the Australian published an article claiming that Mr Brechney had a point, This was followed by several articles about the prank.
In a way it’s why I made I’m A Climate Scientist…. to be used as a ridiculous weapon for reasonable people to use against insanity.