Tip Sheets

Even if you have no experience shooting video or interviewing people, you can still participate in the Youth Climate Report GIS Project. Simply follow the tips on interviewing and shooting we have provided below. And for those wanting to create their own Geo-Doc project, we have also provided a step-by-step guide below. Google MyMaps is suggested in this guide as it is relatively user-friendly and open access, but any GIS software can be used.

Geo-Doc Creation Tips for Educators:

The following is a step-by-step guide to creating a Geo-Doc using the open source software provided by Google called MyMaps. Any GIS software will work, but for educators, the MyMaps software is not only free of costs for the students and their institution, but also represents a relatively easy entry-level introduction to GIS technology and design. This software is also video-friendly with direct embedding capabilities for YouTube.


  1. Create a Google account
  2. Click “Create an account”.
  3. The signup form will appear….
  4. Review Google’sTerms of Service and Privacy Policy, click the checkbox, then click “Next Step”.
  5. The “CreateYour Profile” page will appear.
  6. Your account will be created, and the Google welcome page will appear.


  1. Open a new Excel Spreadsheet.
  2. Create columns: e.g. Title, Name, Description, Location, Video, Link(s), Year. [1]
  3. For Location, provide the name of the city and province, state or country: e.g. Toronto, ON, New York, NY, Paris, France – OR – search Google for the Latitude and Longitude coordinates (e.g. “Boston long and lat”). Copy and paste these numbers – without directions (N, S, E, W) – into the Locations column for more precise pin placement.
  4. For Video, provide the YouTube URL from the video’s “Share”, not the webpage URL.
  5. Save your Excel Spreadsheet as a “CSV” file (CSV stands for “comma-separated values”).


  1. Sign-in to your Google Drive account.
  2. Go to https://google.com/mymaps.
  3. Select the red button labelled: “Create a new map”.
  4. Select: “Untitled map” and give your project a name.
  5. Click on “Base map” to change the style of your project’s map.
  6. Click on “Import”.
  7. Select your CSV Excel Spreadsheet.
  8. New Dialogue Box: “Choose columns to select your placemarks” – Select the box for “Location”.
  9. Click “Continue”
  10. New Dialogue Box: “Choose a column to title your markers” – Select “Name”.
  11. Click “Finish”.
  12. Your map is now created with pins indicating the place of your Locations and the related data fields.
  13. To add Video, copy the URL from each pin’s dialogue box.
  14. Select the “camera” icon
  15. New Dialogue Box: “Choose an image or video”.
  16. Select pull-down menu: “YouTube URL”.
  17. Select “YouTube URL”.
  18. Paste your YouTube URL in the box titled “Paste YouTube URL here”.
  19. Click “Select” button.


  1. To play video from a pin, click the video thumbnail.
  2. Click the word “YouTube”.
  3. Enlarge video by selecting frame icon


Terry, Mark. “Afterword”, The Geo-Doc: Geomedia, Documentary Film, and Social Change. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020. Print, pp. 201 – 205.

[1] Other columns may be added to enhance your project, but the ones listed in the guide are recommended as essential to the basic structure of the Geo-doc.

Interview Tips:


1. At the beginning of your interview, ask the interview subject to state their name and spell it (our editor will need to know the correct spelling).

2. Ask them to state their title or profession and where they work (e.g. Climatologist, University of Cambridge).

3. Ask them what new climate discoveries they have made that they feel delegates attending the climate change conference should know.

4. If you don’t understand what they say, ask them to explain to you – remember, policy-makers aren’t necessarily scientists and they will need explanations too.

5. Ask them what they believe is the greatest climate change crisis facing the world today.

6. Ask them if they have an idea how we can correct this problem or protect ourselves from its dangers.

7. Ask them to provide a message aimed directly at delegates and policymakers.

Camera Tips:

screen shot 2018-12-05 at 12.43.46 pm

1. Position the camera on a tripod or similar stationary support (like a stack of books).

2. Frame the shot so the interview subject is seen from the top of his or her head down to the chest.

3. The interview subject should appear at one side of the frame (left or right). Be sure there is something interesting to look at in the empty space beside them (bookcase, computer, map, art, etc.).

4. Do not place your interview subject in front of a window.

5. Do not place your interview subject in front of a blank wall.

6. Place a remote microphone on the lapel or shirt of the interview subject for best sound results.

7. If you cannot get a remote microphone, get the camera and its mike as close as possible. Remember, preference will be given to those videos with the best production value (and sound quality is more important than picture quality).

8. Make sure the room and surrounding area is as quiet as possible! Email us the interview subject’s name, title and affiliation or organization along with your video upload.

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