Giving back through social media
Not so long ago, graduation and school memorabilia had the classic yearbook as main attraction. There were also those slam books, palanca letters, photos and collages.
Then there was the ever-reliable CD containing graduation portraits, batch albums and, if you were lucky, a little more interactivity.
We now have Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, Google+, among others, as the newest objects of our affection in creativity and self-expression. Yes, preserving memories no longer automatically needs cameras, since our smartphones and tablets do the job.
Just ask 17-year-old Niko Tiutan, Xavier School Batch 2013, whose involvement in a meaningful graduation project was from start to finish.
“This music video was proposed and organized by our student council vice president, Jaime Young, through X-Dub, our exclusive committee for this endeavor. It was planned and executed by selected students,” he says.
Approval by school officials didn’t take long, as the project was immediately given the green light, making it an official undertaking of the entire student body.
The finished product didn’t happen overnight. The team had to first present two videos detailing the background, inspiration, and technical and logistic specifics of the project.
Soon enough, the entire school community, by word of mouth, was in the loop. It met positive response.
While it took Young, Tiutan, and the rest of the team around nine months to plan, it took one full day to shoot and a week to edit the video before public release.
The result was a 14-minute viral “lipdub” video, participated in by the entire middle school (grades 7-12) and featuring some of today’s popular hits. Since then, it has garnered over 32,000 views and 352 Likes. Clearly, being connected brings inspiration from every possible corner.
“We got the idea from the University of British Columbia (UBC) LipDub video, which inspired us to make something similar for Xavier,” says Tiutan.
A “lipdub” video is a viral video that combines lip-synching and audio-dubbing to come up with a totally unique material. The best example would be those countless versions featuring Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe,” which was all the rage in every possible media channel months back.
With pop culture seeping into different demographics and locations, little did Tiutan know that this lipdub video would eventually be destined for greater things.
The role of social media is apparent in this initiative. “Social media is a lot more effective in allowing one to communicate and express himself online. The youth’s easy access to social networking sites brings them further,” Tiutan says.
While YouTube has brought us a long way since its launch in 2005, it remains strategically an efficient go-to medium for keeping our memories intact.
This labor of love could not have been timelier. It became the batch’s official legacy to the Xavier School community, its form of gratitude.
It simply aims to promote school pride by heralding Xavierian talent. For Tiutan, the project has also been an eye-opener. “I found my passion and calling in life—which is to produce videos,” he proudly reveals.
As a result, his loyalty to his alma mater has never been stronger. “Without the opportunity and support of the school, this would not have been possible.”