Normally I am pretty upbeat. But right now I’m having emotional problems. It has to do with these organizations or foundations like NAMI or my local drop in center, Rebel’s. It has to do with them soliciting volunteers or other pieces of content, and then when I raise my hand or offer up what they said they wanted (meeting facilitators, clever little sayings, graphics and this latest debacle with the video I submitted for Healthline’s “You’ve got this Campaign’ that I mentioned yesterday….)
I asked the editor of the magazine why my video wasn’t displayed, acknowledged, critiqued or anything. When she gave me a few excuses that don’t really hold water- could have easily been edited out, cause they were at the very beginning and end..and they never said ‘don’t do this’ or that…I asked her, “How many videos were submitted, anyway?” She wisely never got back to me. Because they probably got thousands of people putting their life on a video, uploading it in hopes of being heard…and nothing. No ‘thanks,’ or anything.
A flash from the past…I’m feeling guilty. I’ve done this to people too! When I was a music director at alternative stations and a disc jockey. We’d have these contests to win a trip to New York or Europe to see, oh, U2 or The Cranberries or something. The whole idea was to give the listener a little thrill, a reason to listen more, to enter the contest at some location like a car dealership (what a car dealership has to do with The Cranberries or The Offspring is beyond me) but the bottom line is this: only one person can win. The rest of the people get their hopes up, register multiple times under different names of relatives or whatever people listen more, our ratings maybe would go up if we had a really good prize, but the point is, it’s about business. It’s not about people, feelings, validation or even hopes and dreams. It’s about the dollars we got from the car dealership and the free trip we got for the international flight and the front row tickets given freely to us by a record promoter in exchange for playing a unknown ‘starter’ type band to get them off the ground.
So really, The “You’ve got This” campaign for bipolar disorder (and they have those same campaigns for HIV and MS, and other illnesses too so it must be adding dollars to their coffers) it had all the hallmarks about helping US with bipolar disorder get our stories heard, and feel better about ourselves for sharing our experience with someone newly diagnosed. It wouldn’t have cost them a thing to list/link all the videos that were submitted, (except the ones they had issues with) unless you consider that the internet has become real estate.
In the space where they could have listed everyone who made a personal effort to be real, they can sell advertising for “Are you having problems with Bipolar Depression? Read about a new treatment option…bla bla bla”
My best friend is a writer. I had told her how excited I was about this and she said, “Allison Don’t be in such a hurry to sell your soul.” And you know what? She’s right. All that ‘feel good’ stuff…many of those meetings they hold for us? It’s about commerce, not about actual care. As always, the bottom line is where it’s at and instead of paying someone to call those of us whose videos they did not accept, those same people could be creating content to grab eyeballs so they can sell the real estate. Now I know what she is talking about.
Sure, I’m going to crop out the stuff they said were the reasons I wasn’t accepted, one editor said she “Loved” my video. It had edits, a little music (Elastica “Connection) and showed in two minutes what other people took six minutes to tell. We live in a short attention span culture. A picture tells 1000 words.
Then again, if the video itself actually is good, captivating and fun to watch, the viewers won’t drift over to the ads for the new psych meds. It’s always about the money. That’s what I have to keep in mind as a mental health advocate. These octopus I tangle with are in it for different reasons that what they say. After all, they need to get paid at the end of the day and the money has to come from somewhere, right?
Ah, We’ll see. We’ll see if they were telling me the truth about why it was rejected. If you are curious about this project, Google “You’ve Got This” Healthline Bipolar. The magazine’s site should come up first but also, since I have posted the video on my blog, there is a separate result for my entry under ‘Allison Strong’. That was the name I used as a music journalist and disc jockey.
But I’ve carried on so, I highly doubt they will put it up on their site. They only display 12 and haven’t rotated them much. I’ve watched them all. Sort of sad,consoling long video selfies. That is apparently what they wanted. To upload it again will probably be just more rejection, dejection.