How to Create a Guerrilla-Style Street Harassment Video

Street harassment happens way more than the stories submitted to the Hollaback sites let on, so how do we encourage more people to share their experiences? Get out there on the streets and do mini-interviews with women, LGBTQ+ folks, and male allies about their experiences with street harassment. Here are some tips to create a YouTube-ready video that will increase awareness about street harassment by elevating the voices of the people who experience it and those who want to help!

  1. Gather supplies and a couple volunteers. Supplies needed include a reliable camera, movie editing software, audio/visual legal release form, clipboard and pens, and Hollaback! postcards, buttons, or stickers to pass out (optional).
  2. Develop great questions. To create a story arc in your video, ask everyone the same basic questions. Some examples include:
    • Have you experienced or witnessed street harassment?
    • How did it make you feel?
    • Why do you think people do it?
    • What would a world without street harassment look like?
  3. Find some people to interview. You can just wander your neighborhood, head to the touristy spots, or wait outside a big concert venue or convention or sports game. You want to get 5-10 people. As the gatekeeper in this scenario, it is your responsibility to interview a diverse group of people. Diversity demonstrates the breadth of the issue and elevates the voices of people who are too often left out of public conversations (LGBTQ+ folks of color, for example).
    When talking to someone who belongs to a traditionally marginalized group, you may consider asking them a question like “As a woman of color, do you feel that the street harassment you experience is usually coupled with racism?” or “As a gay man, are there areas of town you experience more street harassment?” Remember, eveyone is an expert of their own experiences. Your job as the interviewer is to listen and develop the narrative arc in a way that creates empathy for a wide array of experiences.
  4. Tips for the interview.
    • Don’t be afraid to approach people! Let them know what you’re doing so they don’t think YOU are harassing them (start with “Hey, we’re doing video interviews about street harassment, could we interview you?”).
    • Get them to sign the release before or after you interview them, but just be sure they sign! If they don’t, it’s safer not to use their interview.
    • Watch out for wind – it will mess up your sound. Try to position them so the light is hitting them and feel free to get close enough so the mic picks them up.
    • It’s good to have a volunteer hold the camera so you can look in their eyes and ask questions, it’s a little more personal that way.
  5. Edit your footage. You can use Windows Movie Maker, iMovie, whatever you have! Some tips:
    • Quick cuts! Keep the whole video under 5 minutes (if it has to be longer, break it up into 2 videos, each with a bit of a different angle or purpose)
    • Vary it up. Change the order of the people interviewed
    • Only use the best. You don’t have to use everything, use the best lines that will create the most impact or show how much street harassment varies per instance.
    • Create title cards . Google how to do it on your software and create a title and credits page, lasting about 10 seconds each, to book-end the video. If you run a Hollaback! site, both should have a Hollaback logo. On the final title card, be sure to prompt people to share their story on or your local Hollaback site!

Here is an example from Hollaback Baltimore:

Here is another great example from Hollaback! Istanbul:

This Holla How-To is based on the work of Shawna Potter, site leader for Hollaback! Baltimore.