The ‘Film Data Fund’

The Film Data Fund’s guiding statement is: We need more people researching the film industry and sharing what they find.

This covers all aspects of the film industry (development, production, post, sales, distribution, exhibition, audiences and criticism) and researchers from all levels of educational experience (from school children up to PhDs).

The Fund doesn’t define what people should research, or how they present it. This means we support blogs, books, videos, articles, podcasts, courses, festivals, schools… and any other medium or place where people talk about film data research.

The work we support is united by the following principles:

  1. Free access. Final reports, articles and findings should be made available for everyone to read online, for free.
  2. Open methodology. The methodology should be explained to make clear what you did. Exact methods of data gathering and analysis can be kept private, so long as you give enough information to allow other people to replicate your results, using their own data and methods.
  3. Clear and transparent. Data, analysis and comment should not be merged. I.e. explain what you did, say what you think it shows and what you think it means. This allows other people to come to their own conclusions.
  4. Inclusiveness. We have an open door policy to allow everyone to take part in the community if they wish.  The film industry has enough barriers, let’s not add any more.

How will the Fund use the money raised?

The Film Data Fund will support all forms of film industry research. These could include:

  • Rewarding good work – Public competitions, rewarding the best new research and reporting around film data.
  • Accessing new data – Paying for access to private data, to be shared with the community.
  • Education – Running training session (physical and online) to help people conduct their own research projects.
  • Awarding research funding – Allowing people to submit applications for funding to conduct film data projects and education.
  • Our own research – Conducting our own research projects – things that are too large to be tackled as blog articles.
  • Infrastructure – Paying for the technology needed to set up and manage the community.

I (Stephen Follows) won’t take any of this money for myself. My eventual goal is for the Film Data Fund to become a registered charity, run by independent trustees. In the short-term, the money will stay in the PayPal account until needed for projects.

I have another question…

Drop me a line via the contact form and I’ll do my best to answer all questions and queries.

Stephen Follows