First Mile at Doig River

Doig River video planning

Doig River – British Columbia

Sunday, 19 February 2012, 12:28 PM
By Dr. Kate Hennessy, Making Culture Lab, School of Interactive Arts and Technology, Simon Fraser University

I had the pleasure of spending last weekend in Fort St. John, B.C. working with former Doig River First Nation chief Garry Oker and SFU PhD Candidate Rob McMahon to plan a documentary video that Mr. Oker will produce for the First Mile project, which is based in part at Simon Fraser University.

The First Mile project “celebrates locally owned and managed First Nations Information and Communications Technologies (ICT). One way it does this is through this an online meeting space — a place for communities to learn and share ideas about technology development”.

Our job over the weekend was to collaborate with Mr. Oker in the initial planning of a video about the Doig River First Nation’s recent connection with high-speed Internet, and what this has meant for the band.

** Editor’s note: The Internet connection at Doig River is not owned and managed by the community, but rather by TELUS.The Doig River community is using this TELUS-supplied connection in many innovative ways ***

Garry (l) and Rob planning the videoGarry and Rob plan video
Road near Fort Saint John
Road near Fort St. John

We also had the opportunity to visit and talk with community members at the Doig River First Nation. It was wonderful to spend time with Jack Askoty and to see video footage of Jack’s incredible hunting and trapping skills. We were lucky to visit with Billy Makadahay and see the work that he is doing with the First Voiceslanguage revitalization and archiving project, and to talk to Doig River councilor Marlene Benson about the effects of high-speed access for her band work and her craftwork.

Video planning
Video planning
Kate and Garry discussing video
Kate and Garry discuss video

Interviewing Marlene and Jack
Interviewing Marlene and Jack
Video editing
Video editing

Thank you to everyone we visited with last weekend for your hospitality and kindness! I can’t wait to see the finished video, which will not only feature some of the amazing digital media work being produced by Doig River youth, but will also show how Doig River media producers are using their cultural knowledge to shape communications technologies to meet their needs.

Editing video footage

Find out more

Read this post on Dr. Hennessy’s website