2019 Digital Video Storytelling winner

Real America with Jorge Ramos: Immigration

About the Project

Real America is different than any long-form narrative online because of its unique format. The show is shot vertically for a mobile audience on Facebook Watch. We hope you’ll watch it on your phone for the full effect.

Host Jorge Ramos, an immigrant himself, uses this platform to present unique immigration stories that show the complexities behind this issue. From militia groups on the southern border, to going inside the largest migrant child detention center in the country and even seeing how an ICE raid changed a small town forever. Our team travels across the country to present different angles to this issue in a visual way that feels very much at home with the audience on the internet.

Jorge even shoots some of the interviews and stand-ups directly on his iPhone in selfie mode, providing his audience with a unique level of intimacy for a news program. He also interacts live with viewers during airtime, giving immediate responses to their questions about the episodes.

The shareable nature of the stories can be easily passed from one viewer to the next, providing a more organic and direct experience for the audience. Full-screen vertical storytelling also allows us to play with graphics and text in a 9×16 format, providing viewers with a news-watching experience that’s different from anything else on the internet (i.e. stacking interviews on top and bottom of the screen and not in the standard television dimension).

The show also has an interactive social media presence and uses still photos to help tell the story from a different perspective.



Mark Lima accepted the 2019 award for Digital Video Storytelling. (Video by Justus Hawkins, ONA19 HBCU Fellow)