Ready for Copenhagen? Wait! We're locked out!

Photo by AFP

A few hours before the flight it always feels kind of strange. A sense of excitement, coupled with the sweet taste of what could be coming starts to invade you. You begin to image everything that you want to do: people to meet, palces to go, photos to take, amazing interviews... you fantasize about the live reporting that you will be doing and create a mental scheme for the blog posts to come.

Then, your face hits the hard wall of reality. The enthusiasm of thousands of bloggers, activists and journalists may be not enough: there is simply not space for them.

Al Jazeera journalist Jonah Hull explains the situation, in a twitter-style reporting:

Delegates, campaigners and journalists trapped outside the Copenhagen climate conference as summit is oversubscribed.

Goodness knows what's actually happening inside the Bella centre in Copenhagen. I have reports of course, but that's it.

I can tell you what's happening outside. Hundreds, perhaps more, newly-arrived, accredited delegates, campaigners and journalists crowded in the cold waiting to collect their passes to enter. Many have waited for hours, laden with laptop bags, satchels and briefcases, tempers sharpening.

My first taste of the chaos was at the airport, waiting for the COP 15 shuttle bus to whisk us to the conference in very good time.

A man turned up and warned us he'd been waiting in a queue at the Bella Centre for six hours this morning only to be told accreditation was temporarily closed. He told us not to bother trying. But we proceeded.

At the Bella Centre we were barred from even joining the throng for accreditation.

I was unable to reach a colleague who'd been in the queue for eight hours, with no end in sight. The policeman was polite but unflinching. Maybe tomorrow morning, he said. Maybe? We will have to get there very, very early.

The evening Danish news has a report saying the venue is now full, no one else will be allowed in. The leaders themselves haven't even arrived yet.

I'm told 45,000 people have been accredited in all. The venue only has a 15,000 capacity and already 30,000 are attending. More are arriving all the time as the summit enters its most fraught and crucial final period.

One woman grumbled bitterly into her mobile phone in Spanish. I couldn't hear the detail but she repeatedly and loudly stressed the word 'cojones'. One can only guess.

You have to wonder at the organisers' competence here. How on earth can they be entrusted with saving the planet?

p.s. This article was crossposted on the TH!NK ABOUT IT - Climate Change blogging competition.


TH!NK2: Climate Change Round One Winners Announced

On November 4, 2009, the European Journalism Centre announced the TH!NK2: Climate Change Round One Winners. Each of the three winners for Round One of TH!NK2: Climate Change will receive a 500 Euro gift certificate to or a donation to a charity of the winner's choosing in the same amount.

Two additional winners of the Honorary Video Award will receive a 250 Euro gift certificates to, or a donation to a charity of the winner's choosing in the same amount.

I would first like to say that I am honoured to be included among such great authors. As for the winners themselves, eventually it comes down to the way one personally feels about an article or a video. However, I think each one is somewhat objectively justified.

Sinisa was able to blend together a touching story and a detailed research, keeping the structure simple and the attention high throughout the whole post. The characteristics of a true journalist.

Jodi’s video was very simple, minimal. Sometimes you don’t need complex things to get the point across. Very effective in its simplicity.

As soon as I read Hemant’s post I knew he was going to win the impact category. I remember I even mentioned to Petrine a few days ago. It wasn’t difficult to see that coming. smile

Christopher used all what’s necessary for a good video. It has lights, editing, presence, screenplay and planning. Bravo.

As for me… well, it’s not up to me to judge.

I just think that there were many other posts that deserved as much as ours. And that makes very excited to be in this competition, regardless on how it’s going to end.

Thank you guys.


Th!nk about it Journal - Day Zero

During the three days of the kick-off event I shot quite a lot of footage, thanks to my trusty Creative Vado, which I carry around all the time, and the Flip Mino HD that they gave us. I was finally able to put some of the pieces together, just before the deadline of the first part f the competition. I know some of you are expecting something great... sorry to disappoint you, it isn't anything special. I decided to make a series of three videos, one for each day of the competition: Part Zero is the arrival, Part 1 is Bella Centre, and Part 2 is the Dyssekilde Ecovillage.

Most of you guys from the Th!nk about it kick-off event are featured on the video, I hope you'll enjoy it!

Th!nk about it Journal - Day Zero from Federico Pistono on Vimeo.

p.s. This article was crossposted on the TH!NK ABOUT IT - Climate Change blogging competition, on Vimeo and on YouTube.


Th!nkCast #1 - Good evening, Copenhagen!

Th!nkCast #1 - Good evening, Copenhagen!
Published: Sunday 11 October
Host: Stephen Spillane


First episode: Good evening, Copenhagen!

The fourth out of many (hopefully) podcasts which relate to the Think about climate change blogging contest.

Description: How was the Copenhagen kick-off event? What was the highest point of the event and how did the bloggers react to the speakers?

This podcast was recoded on the first night of the actual conference, after the speakers at the Bella Centre gave their presentations. I remember having a great dinner at the Biomio (I don't know why they chose an Italian name for the restaurant, I guess good good and Italian sound-like name really go well together) when Joe Litobarski gathered all the people interested in making a podcast.

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