Thank you for supporting our Keep it in the Ground campaign. I’m writing to tell you about the podcast series I’ve executive produced about the campaign itself.
The series was the idea of our editor in chief Alan Rusbridger. Inspired by the surprise American hit Serial, he asked whether we could do something similar with climate change. His idea was to follow the team behind the scenes, living out our values of transparency, and telling the story of climate change along the way.
You can subscribe to Keep it in the Ground on iTunes or listen to the individual programmes via the Guardian’s podcast page.
I’ve been working on this series now since February overseeing a team of producers and sound designers. It’s a big production effort but hugely rewarding, giving what I hope is a really entertaining listen in to the mechanics of the campaign.
After 7 episodes here are some of the highlights:
* Closed Doors [Episode 3]. Alan has been my best fixer! Persuading the Scott Trust to let me record their highly confidential AGM would have been a difficult ask of a researcher, but Alan has been active in not only sorting out these key recordings but also suggesting people and scenes for the podcast.
* Tape [Episodes: 4 and 6]. I’m a documentary maker and specialise in verite, so being able to record literally whatever I want is a dream. However, can you imagine the amount of tape? In March the team spent an intensive week reviewing and brainstorming next steps giving me 24 hours of recordings!
* On Air [Episodes 1-7]. Right from the start I’ve been recording everything: editorial meetings, creative brainstorms, as well as cornering members of the teams for one on ones. The team knew me well before this project but persuading them that their bad jokes and story speculation were safe with me has sometimes been an issue.
* Creativity [Episodes 1-7]. We’re trying a new style for this series. In America, podcasting is having a huge surge of popularity. It’s not just Serial but also programmes like RadioLab and 99% invisible. In all, the narrator holds you by the hand, taking you through the piece like an old fashioned story. It seems to draw the listener in, and along with some fancy sound design and music the programmes sound unlike anything we’ve ever made at the Guardian.
Francesca Panetta, executive producer, Keep it in the Ground podcast