Grassroots media to advocate, educate and encourage adults and youth to think and act differently. Voices of Hope Productions is a creative services and multimedia production company specializing in short and feature length documentaries, social marketing, issue advertising, and media education. We work with nonprofit and government agencies to build campaigns through a wide-range of media and distribution options.

|THE EYE| is published regularly to announce the latest news about Voices of Hope films, programs, workshops, industry events and broadcasts. If your email is text only |THE EYE| can be
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Just for the Kids motivates educators and the public to take action to improve schools by giving them a clear picture of a school's academic condition and identifying the effective practices found in high-performing schools.

Just for the Kids - New Jersey organizes and analyzes student achievement data at the school level in the core academic subjects and presents the data in ways that are easy to understand. Once the data are studied, a school's potential for improvement is identified by comparing its performance against other schools with similar or more challenging-to-educate student populations. Rather than traditional accountability systems that are based on geographic proximity or ranking and rating, Just for the Kids - New Jersey looks at factors that might influence and sustain the success of student outcomes among diverse student populations.

Just for the Kids - New Jersey was established and is maintained by the Business Coalition for Educational Excellence (BCEE) at the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce in cooperation with the New Jersey Department of Education.


Tuesday, June 27

The Monmouth County Arts Council will hold the New Jersey premiere of the film, “Who Killed the Electric Car?” directed by Chris Paine, at Clearview Cinemas, 36 White St., Red Bank, at 7:30 p.m., with a 6 p.m. reception prior to the film at McKay Imaging, 12 Monmouth St., Red Bank.

A whodunit documentary narrated by Martin Sheen, “Who Killed the Electric Car?” chronicles the life and mysterious death of the all-electric GM EV1, examining its cultural and economic ripple effects, and how they reverberated through the halls of government and big business. According to director Chris Paine, “Documentaries bring
big stories to the public in ways other media can’t. At first, I just wanted to share the amazing experience of driving an electric car, because they were impossible to get outside of California and Arizona. When they started taking them off the road, I knew we had better start shooting. What we discovered was a lot more than a story about a car.

“Who Killed the Electric Car?” debuted to rave reviews at both the 2006 Sundance Film Festival and the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival. Tickets for the film are $40 for MCAC members, $45 for non-members, and film-only tickets are $10. Contact the MCAC at



1. Which band bared all on MTV for their “What’s My Age Again” video?
a) A Simple Plan
b) Smashmouth
c) Blink-182
d) Barenaked Ladies
e) I’m clueless.

2. Which actress’s character was not killed off in one of the Scream movies?
a) Drew Barrymore
b) Jada Pinkett Smith
c) Sarah Michelle Gellar
d) Rebecca Gayheart

3. Levels of which video game include “Satan’s Dark Delight,” “Hell’s Atrium” and “Palace of Hate”?
a) Quake
b) Grand Theft Auto III
c) Doom
d) Splinter Cell

4. Which of the following people has Eminem not threatened with violence in his music?
a) His mother
b) His wife
c) Pamela Lee
d) Julia Roberts



Once you get there you're immediately in an interactive web space that makes you feel like artist Jackson Pollock.


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>>>Read back issues of

"The first step is to understand that TV is just a delivery system for ads. The only programming that really matters to those in power is the commercials. The success of a show is not measured by how good it is, or who says they loved it, or even how many people watch. A show is a success if the people who watched it go and buy the products that were advertised during the commercials. It is all about what is being sold and (just as important) who is doing the buying. It might not seem fair, but viewers need to understand that the most-watched shows aren't always considered the most financially successful." Dean Batali, lead writer for That '70s Show and former writer for Buffy the Vampire Slayer


Ryan Seacrest boasted in the last moments of the 'American Idol' finale that 63.4 million votes came in over the telephone lines. He went on to say that there were more votes than any American president in history had received. Besides being a scary state of affairs for a country where more people vote for a TV show than a president, he neglected to say that Americans have to be 18 years old, registered, and can only cast their ballot once per presidential election. 'Idol' voting is open to anyone who can push phone buttons, but more importantly, they can also vote multiple times for their 'Idol' choice. Is anyone paying attention to those small details?

Ka-ching! Another year of American Idols live concert tour beginning in July and two top finalists release new singles in June. Is there anything stopping this moneymaker?

Where else can you watch young wannabees sing on the same stage as Mary J. Blige, Prince, Stevie Wonder and Barry Manilow? The last time we might have seen this was for a Muscular Dystrophy pledge-a-thon broadcast. Before 'Idol' how many teens do you know who would belt out a collection of Burt Bacharach songs? But, music is one of those mediums that transcends age and time. 'American Idol' has captured the ears and eyes of 6 to 90 year olds and everyone in between. It's not very often that you see one show bring the entire family together. 'American Idol' contestant Paris Bennett, "There's more than one personality that kids love, that adults might be in love with, that grandparents might be in love with."

You can't argue —'Idol' is a brilliant formula. It's the darling of its audience. It's the darling of its advertisers. Its the darling of the FOX channel. It's the darling of the telecommunications industry and it's a darling in other countries too. "'American Idol' has essentially made that network, bringing it to parity with the three big networks," said Robert Thompson, professor of TV and pop culture at Syracuse University. "So many people are getting fat on this show." Cingular, which collects 10 cents for every text-message vote reported a 9 percent revenue increase for the first quarter of 2006 that it attributed to 'Idol.'

When is a good thing too much, though? Will 'Idol' get diluted by other reality shows that emulate the formula? If the show can keep an American family together for two nights and get them to spend money on the products advertised, the show is certain to go down in entertainment history as a pop culture behemoth.

>>>>ON MEDIA >>>> 5 VOICES

Book: Hope Unraveled: The People's Retreat and Our Way Back Much is made these days about the disconnect between the American people and public life and politics. The issue is often framed, however, in terms of inherently polarizing dichotomies such as Democrat/Republican, religious/secular, wealthy/poor. In Hope Unraveled: The People's Retreat and Our Way Back, Richard C. Harwood examines this disconnect from a different perspective and concludes that the retreat of Americans from public life and politics is widespread and common among people of all beliefs and positions within society.
Magazine: SHOCK a new magazine that launched this month is already embroiled in controversy. The magazine published by Hachette Filipacchi Media USA promises shocking photographs in each issue. The former executive editor of Maxim heads-up the launch of SHOCK, a new photo-driven magazine he describes as "Life magazine for the new millennium." The idea is to give people "an uncensored view of the world around them," says Mike Hammer, also former editor-in-chief of Stuff. The magazine already shocked one photographer who reported that he didn't give permission for them to use his photograph that appeared on the cover. According to their website, SHOCK Magazine has reached a settlement with photographer Michael Yon's lawyers regarding the use of his cover shot taken in Iraq.

Website: Exploratorium Online since 1993, the Exploratorium was one of the first science museums to build a site on the World Wide Web. Our site now contains over 18 thousand award-winning Web pages exploring hundreds of different topics. Housed within the walls of San Francisco's Palace of Fine Arts, the Exploratorium is a collage of hundreds of science, art, and human perception exhibits. The Exploratorium is a leader in the movement to promote museums as informal education centers. This unique museum was founded in 1969 by noted physicist and educator Dr. Frank Oppenheimer.

Music: Central Park SummerStage, a program of City Parks Foundation, presents performances of outstanding artistic quality, free of charge, to serve the diverse communities of New York City. The artists represent a breadth of genres and cultures and perform in an outdoor setting accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds. SummerStage strives to develop audiences' deepening appreciation for contemporary, traditional, and emerging artists as well as the communities in which these artists originate.

Film: little man Nicholas is born 100 days too early and weighs only one pound. His heart is the size of a cashew. “little man” is the story of how a micro-preemie brought a family to its knees. Throughout his struggle for life, so struggle filmmaker Nicole Conn and political activist Gwen Baba to keep their family from disintegrating under the unrelenting stress and chaos of hospitals, emergency medical crisis and a crushing blow to trust. “little man” explores the core of the human spirit as a family realizes that they are capable of enduring what they never thought possible.
Net Neutrality allows everyone to compete on a level playing field and is the reason that the Internet is a force for economic innovation, civic participation and free speech. Congress is pushing a law that would abandon the Internet's First Amendment -- a principle called Network Neutrality that prevents companies like AT&T, Verizon and Comcast from deciding which Web sites work best for you -- based on what site pays them the most. If the public doesn't speak up now, our elected officials will cave to a multi-million dollar lobbying campaign. 10 out of 12 of our New Jersey Representatives voted in favor of the COPE Telecom bill. Only Congressmen Holt and Payne voted against the final bill. Andrews, LoBiondo, Saxton, Smith, Garrett, Pallone, Ferguson, Pascrell, Rothman and Frelinghuysen all voted for it. Find out more

The Voices of Hope Productions web site has seen tremendous growth—when launched last year there were 20 pages and now there are over 80 pages. The web site has been redesigned to include a more intuitive navigation system and has been upgraded with technology that makes it easier to provide and access up-to-date media information and resources. An opt-in has also been added to subscribe to the enewsletter. Log on and see what's changed and let us know what you think.

(Annenberg Public Policy Center, 108th Congressional Report)
Issue ads differ from candidate ads in that they promote policy issues, opinions about public policy and seek to mobilize constituents, policy makers, or regulators in support of or in opposition to current or proposed public policies. Along with raising issues, those advocating the importance of issue advertising in the political system tend to point to issue ads as playing an important role in framing problems, issues, and solutions.

Over $404 million was spent on broadcast and print issue advocacy during the 108th Congress (2004-2005), with business interests outspending citizen-based advocacy groups by more than five to one, according to a report by the Annenberg Public Policy Center. Citizen/cause groups purchased $58.2 million in issue advertisements representing 14% of the total. There was vastly uneven advertising spending on important public policy issues. All told, 94% of the specific issues examined were subject to unbalanced persuasive efforts. Of the 52 specific issues identified, half had all of the spending advocating a single side of the debate with zero spending on competing points of view. Only 26 issues (50%) faced any opposition spending whatsoever, and for the great majority of these the spending was vastly disparate; only three (6%) issues had competitive spending.

“With all the issues that congresspeople, staff, and the media have to deal with, by running a clever or attractive ad, you can get people’s attention in a way that you might not be able to otherwise."
Dan Weiss, Media consultant

Spending and Issue Outcomes:

• 87% of the $39.9 million in total spending on the issue argued in favor of the deregulation of the local telephone market and the FCC crafted regulations to that end.

• 100% of the $96.0 million in total spending on the issue argued against greater oversight of government sponsored enterprises such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the bill (HR 2575) died in committee.

• 99% of the $40.5 million in total spending on the issue argued in favor of the prescription drug benefit and the bill (PL 108-173) passed.

When advocates of issue advertising are asked why they choose to advertise, they usually say: to encourage supporters, set agendas, define frames, keep organizations in mind, generate free media, and balance a biased press. They usually don’t mention persuading members on specific issues or passing specific pieces of legislation.

At the top of the list of goals for many issue advertisers is setting an agenda and raising an issue. This is a critical component of the legislative process that has to happen before there is a bill to lobby for or against. According to John Kane, senior vice president of the Nuclear Energy Institute, issue advertising is effective at raising issues in Congress. “If you think about the wide range of issues that Congress has to consider and the wide range of interest groups across the country . . . trying to get your issue up on the table and highlighted is a very important part of the whole fight . . . It’s really not an effort to change someone’s mind, it’s an effort to really spotlight the issue.”

Media consultant Dan Weiss echoed this idea, “with all the issues that congresspeople, staff, and the media have to deal with, by running a clever or attractive ad, you can get people’s attention in a way that you might not be able to otherwise." Read More

'Future Leaders' were chosen from Middlesex, Monmouth and Ocean Counties in New Jersey


Greater Media Newspapers decided that it was about time to find stories of top young people accomplishing great things in their local communities. They looked for young adults who were worthy of recognition, not necessarily for their good grades alone, or their athletic abilities alone, but for youth who are well-rounded in their scholarly endeavors as well as their extracurricular activities, volunteerism and career aspirations.

The Greater Media Newspaper staff of writers and photographers interviewed and photographed 120 Future Leaders in the local communities. Their stories are inspiring and heartfelt. However varied their career goals, each of these young adults shares the dream of making a positive change in their and other's lives through their leadership.

Voices of Hope Productions
is dedicated to educate and foster social change through documentary filmmaking and media literacy.

Voices of Hope Productions—Leaving a Legacy within our Lifetime...

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