WebDox Conference was great

On May 6 2013, the WebDox conference took place. The room in Leuven (BE) was packed – about 100 people came from different countries (Netherlands, Spain, Germany,…), with different backgrounds (documentary makers, producers, NGO workers, coders, broadcasters,…). There were 9 speakers from US, France, Denmark and Belgium, covering datavisualisation, webdocs on tablet, immersive journalism,… Thanks to everyone who was there!

Pictures of the day can be seen at the Facebook-page of Docville, the festival that hosted the event. Subsequent to this conference, there are also three labs, in which participants work hands-on to gain ideas and develop projects.


People who want to stay tuned on future activities of MEDIA Desk and iDROPS, please check out the MEDIA Desk Twitter, Facebook, website or iDROPS Twitter, Facebook, website.

Partner organisation deAuteurs

A new authors’ collecting society created by and devoted to authors. This was the focal point when deAuteurs became operational in 2012. Only authors can join deAuteurs and the Board of administrators is uniquely composed of authors. Knowhow, transparency and accessibility, these are the keywords in the daily operation of deAuteurs.


The primary mission of deAuteurs is to ensure the collective management of copyrights for authors
in Flanders by collecting and distributing their associated royalties on a national and international
scale. The authors’ society represents a comprehensive repertoire: cinema (short and feature films), television (television films and series), animation films, radio fiction, documentary, performing arts (theatre, stand up comedy, choreography,)… as well as literature, comics and illustrations.

deAuteurs aims to unite authors in the Dutch speaking market in order to create a constructive
dialogue with producers, television and performing arts organizers. It will have regular consultations with its Dutch equivalents Stichting Lira and VEVAM in order to regularly share its experiences, exchanging best practices from both countries.

The remuneration of authors’ rights is the core business of any authors’ society, however, members of deAuteurs benefit from more services: The legal department of deAuteurs focuses on all aspects of the professional life of authors: legal counselors provide support in the negotiation of individual contracts with publishers, producers and theatre organizers. DeAuteurs has also an annual budget to help achieve authors’ projects. This “cultural action” program is regularly updated to meet authors’ needs in a cultural landscape that is constantly changing. In this way deAuteurs also provides support to cultural events and initiatives, such as WebDox.

In a fast and ever-changing world, deAuteurs also represents its authors across national borders through its agreements with SACD and Scam – the only international authors’ collecting societies in Belgium. deAuteurs is dedicated and determined to protect and promote authors’ rights. Created by and destined for authors.


Check out the conference speakers

The final programme of the WebDox conference in Leuven (BE) on May 6 was already known (check it out here). Below, you can now also find an overview of the speakers, with a link to their bio:

  • Jonathan Harris (US) is technological artist and maker of datavisualisation projects Cowbird and We Feel FineFull bio
  • Daniel Burwen (US) is storyteller and maker of the graphic novel touch doc Operation AjaxFull bio
  • Nonny de la Peña (US) is specialized in immersive journalism and virtual reality docs. Full bio
  • Filip Fastenaekels and Bart Janssens (BE) are media architects at the Flemish broadcaster VRT. Full bio Filip / Bart
  • Sabine Lange (FR/DE) is bi-media commissioning editor in ARTE’s Culture department. Full bio
  • Bjarke Myrthu (DA) is founder of Storyplanet, a toolbox for creating engaging multimedia content. Full bio (powerpoint file)
  • François Le Galle (FR) is interactive producer at Camera Talk Productions, maker of Défense d’Afficher. Full bio
  • Margaux Misikka (FR) is producer at Upian, maker of Gaza SderotPrison Valleyand Alma – A Tale of ViolenceFull bio
  • Sandra Gaudenzi (UK) is researcher and organiser of i-Docs and will moderate the conference. Full bio

More information on the WebDox conference

Pioneer in immersive journalism at the conference

Nonny de la PenaFast Company’s Co-Create Magazine called US based Nonny de la Peña one of ‘The 13 people who made the world more creative’.

She is the pioneer of Immersive Journalism, a groundbreaking brand of nonfiction that offers fully immersive experiences of the news using virtual reality gaming platforms. Combining her communication and technology skills with her lengthy career as a reporter, de la Peña believes newsgames can deepen the understanding of complex stories.

Her most recent project Hunger in Los Angeles creates the feeling of “being there” as a real crisis unfolds on a food-bank line at the First Unitarian Church.  Hunger was called “one of the most talked-about” pieces at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. 

Her other projects include the MacArthur funded Gone Gitmo, a virtual Guantanamo Bay Prison; Cap & Trade, an interactive exploration of the carbon markets built with Frontline World and CIR; Ipsress which investigates detainees held in stress positions; and Three Generations, a newsgame on the California eugenics movement that premiered at 2011 Games For Change. She also co-founded the Knight News Challenge winner Stroome.com, an online collaborative video editing platform that hosted users from 126 different countries.

A graduate of Harvard University, she is a award-winning documentary filmmaker with twenty years of journalism experience including as a correspondent for Newsweek Magazine and as a writer whose work has appeared in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times Magazine, Premiere Magazine, and others.  Her films have screened on national television and at theatres in more than fifty cities around the globe, garnering praise from critics like A.O. Scott who called her work “a brave and necessary act of truth-telling.”

Jeremy Mendes out – Sabine Lange in

There are some final changes to the programme of the WebDox conference. Jeremy Mendes from the National Film Board of Canada will sadly be unable to attend. In contrary to that, Sabine Lange from ARTE is now a confirmed speaker. Click here for the full programme.

Sabine Lange_05Sabine Lange has been working at ARTE Television since the early beginning of the European cultural TV channel in 1992. From 1994 to 2001 she worked for the film department, where she was responsible for a short film magazine as well as for film and documentary coproduction. After 10 years of experience in linear storytelling she decided to look for new adventures and combine the linear to the non-linear.

She worked then for 12 years in ARTE’s New Media Department and helped to set up ARTE as one of the pioneers in cross-media projects. After ARTE’s recent restructuring, she is now working as bi-media commissioning editor in ARTE’s Culture department.

She is still particularly in charge of transmedia projects, always looking for innovative formats and new ways of meaningful storytelling. Latest projects include the platform The Arab world in revolution(s) which she was running for two years, the long tail transmedia project The cathedral builders (soon available in English) and a just launched real time fiction project La semaine de verité / Zeit der Helden.

Discover the world by its street art


When people walk in a city, they tend to ignore the back streets and crumbled places. However, sometimes the darkest corners are covered with art, free for everyone to enjoy it. Not only are they nice to look at, they also tell us something about the concerns and life in these cities.

Graffiti art is another way to understand the energy and reality of a city. Street artists create entertainment, political criticism, social objections, etc. In a way, it is a kind of a participating citizenship.

Francois Le Galle

Therefore François Le Gall, Sidonie Garnier and Jeanne Thibord decided to design an interactive webdoc that shows us the world in a totally different way. François Le Gall will be at the WebDox conference to talk about this project, Défense d’afficher.

Défense d’afficher, developed with France Télévisions, lets the users explore eight major cities by its street art. In the webdoc, we can watch clips of the street artists and find a lot of additional information. After visiting the city, users can continue the experience by sharing the street art they found in their own cities with the All City app. Défense d’afficher is a project of François Le Galle’s company Cameratalk and has won the Prix France 24 – RFI Award at Visa pour L’Image 2012 and was selected for the Prix Europa 2012 in Berlin.



Docville – host of WebDox


On May 3rd, the 9th edition of the International Documentary Film Festival Docville, the largest documentary film festival in Belgium, starts. During 9 days you can enjoy a fine selection of brand new documentary films, but also a lot of events. Since many years, Docville organises a national and international competition. Check out their brand new catalogue. Docville will take place from 3-11 may in 4 locations all over Leuven: Art Centre STUK, Wagehuys, Museum M and Kinepolis.

The international conference and the first two labs of WebDox take place during Docville.


WebDox Labs – create engaging interactive webdocs

“Everything will be online”

WebDox consists of an international conference and three labs. The latter are the hands-on part, in which documentary makers, app and game developers, game designers and other creative and interactive professionals generate, code and develop interactive webdocumentaries.

Doc Jam serves to generate ideas. It takes place in Leuven on May 7, the day after the conference. Dox & Tech Lab gives participants the opportunity to explore coding possibilities for their concepts. It takes place in Leuven on May 8 and 9. The third lab, in Ghent from June 19 to 21, helps you develop your interactive webdocumentary with a strong strategy. 


iDROPS is the coordinator of the Labs of WebDox and has just published more detailed information on the Labs. Find it here.

Daniel Burwen shows how to touch the doc

After 4 years of hard work, Cognito Comics launched the phenomenal graphic novel Operation Ajax, in collaboration with Stephen Kinzer. Although it was meant to be a graphic novel in print, the announcement of the iPad in 2010 changed these plans. Cognito Comics understood the possibilities of the iPad for interactive storytelling and further developed the content towards this device.


Operation Ajax is based on the book All The Shah’s Men and tells the story of the Iranian coup d’état led by the CIA in 1953. To intensify the experience, the graphic novel uses recently declassified documents, historical photos, and video film reels from the era. At WebDox conference, Daniel Burwen – American storyteller and creative brain behind Operation Ajax – will do a keynote on this project and on so-called touch docs.