Wapikoni mobile or alternative media as more than alternative facts

What is alternative media?

"unofficial opposition to mainstream media" - Dorothy Kidd

Social change

Self and plurality of representations



Clemencia Rodriguez
  • Columbian-US based media & communication scholar at Temple University
  • Citizen's media


  • Political Subject
  • Radical Citizenship
  • Radical Democracy
  • Citizen's media
"It was the first time that the community had the chance to look at itself on television, and this first encounter with a mediated image of itself had profound effect on each of its member. (...) I was witnessing a community looking at itself and in the process, transforming its self-image" - Clemencia Rodriguez

wapikoni mobile


  • Non-profit organization based in Montreal who provides mobile film production studios to Indigenous youth
  • Founded in 2004
  • 900 short films involving more than 4000 youth amongst 47 communities across Canada and South America

** How It Works**

  • Mobility
  • Mentors
  • Collaboration with local resources


****Mission & Impact****

  • Training and mentorship
  • Job and educational opportunities creation
  • Countering suicide, drop-outs and addiction
  • Raising awareness
Manon Barbeau

Wapikoni mobile's goal isn't to transform its participant into filmmakers, but to give them back faith in their own abilities. It's difficult to measure the impact that participating a creative project can have on someone, which explains why objectives depend on individuals. (...) It might be to be more active in your community, to find a job, to go back to school. But for many others, it's to give them back the taste for life. - Miruna Craciunecu


Awards & opportunities

  • Raymond Caplin
  • Telefilm Canada & CBC
  • UN

Other concepts

Counter Memory: Narratives of history that runs counter to 'official' accounts; "revisiting and relearning suppressed or excluded beliefs" (see Hladki 2014)

Transnation: the formation of transnational (ethnic) communities made possible by the use of technology, often associated with a resistance to assimilation (see Karim 2012)

Liminoid Medium: A medium developing parallel to mainstream media incorporating alternative discourses and criticisms of mainstream media (see Payne 2012)

Re-territorialization: The reclaiming of historically colonized space within a collective memory (see Hladki 2012)

Sources & Suggested Readings

Alia, Valerie. (2009). Outlaws and Citizens: Indigenous People and the 'New Media Nation'. International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics, 5(1-2), 29-54.

Barbeau, Manon. Wapikoni Mobile (2015) 34:2 Revue droits et libertés.

Bélair-Cirino, Marco. "Le Wapikoni Mobile, Fleuron du Canada." Le Devoir, 11 October 2011

Craciunecu, Miruna. " La sous-représentativité des artistes issus-es des communautés culturelles dans les médias québécois " (2016) (In)visibilités médiatiques, Revue l’Esprit libre.

Hladki, Janice. "Remembering Otherwise": Counter-Commemoration and Re-Territorialization in Indigenous Film and Video Art."Revista de Estudios Globales & Arte Contemporaneo, 2(2), 77-100.

People’s charter of communication

Karim, H. Karim. "Is Ethnic Media Alternative?" In K. Kozolanka, P. Mazepa & D. Skinner (Eds.), 2012, Alternative Media in Canada (pp. 165-183).

Kidd, Dorothy. "The Value of Alternative Media." Peace Review 11, no. 1 (1999): 113-19.

Payne, Jenny Gunnarsson. (2012). "Moving Images, Transforming Media: The Mediating Communitas of Hallon TV and DYKE Hard". International Journal of Cultural Studies, 16(4), 367-382.

Rodriguez, Clemencia. (2001). “From Alternative Media to Citizen’s Media” in Fissures in the Mediascape. Creskill, NJ: Hampton Press, 2001), pp. 1–23.

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.