Tweet your doc on Twitter with the hashtag #tweetmydoc

Later this month, Doc Soup Man Tom Roston will feature one documentary-in-progress that makes the most original and compelling use of Twitter — in 140 characters or less, of course. Share your doc with the hashtag #tweetmydoc by October 17, 2011.

There’s a dude living in isolation in the jungles of Guyana with five Twitter followers (what’s up, @JungleHutTV?). There’s a woman interested in the division between church and state in Brooklyn who just completed a successful Kickstarter campaign (way to go, @TheWall_film!). There’s an English bloke who created a YouTube channel for his film about being schizophrenic (@MrJonnyMoss!). And there’s a Fulbright Fellow who created a poignant website about albinos in Zimbabwe (hats off to you, @YourName_MyName!).

These are four of my thousand-plus Twitter followers who have joined the rush of documentary filmmakers using social media platforms to traverse the difficult road of getting a documentary made, distributed and seen by more than just family and friends (and @DocSoupMan). It seems these days that everyone — from your local bakery to your town council member — is part of a mad dash to accumulate followers and “Likes.”

I’d say about one tenth of my Twitter followers are filmmakers looking to make a connection or get their film noticed. And that’s exactly what I’d like to do: shine a light on a film with a Doc Soup posting here on POV’s blog, which comes with a hefty social media ripple: @povdocs tweets reach thousands (some of them as influential as they come in the doc world) and POV Facebook’s page has an audience of 20,000 doc fans.

Here are the rules: Between now and Monday, October 17, 2011 at 6 PM Eastern Time — that’s two weeks from now — filmmakers should tweet me about documentaries in progress. Be sure to start your tweet with @DocSoupMan and include the hashtag #tweetmydoc so others can join in the conversation.

The filmmaker who tweets me the most original and compelling tweet (140 characters or less!) describing his or her film will be the winner. I’m the judge, but I encourage people to weigh in and support a particular film. I’ll be listening to the tweeting jury via #tweetmydoc. Pretty straightforward, right? I will then interview the filmmaker, feature the film and discuss the importance of social media as it relates to the project, in a post later this month.

Sound good? Tweet your doc!

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Tom Roston
Tom Roston is a guest columnist for POV's documentary blog. He is a former Premiere magazine senior editor, who graduated from Brown University and started his career in journalism at The Nation and then Vanity Fair. Tom's freelance work has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, The Los Angeles Times, The Hollywood Reporter and other publications. He has written several Kindle Singles, including the bestselling Kindle Singles Interview: Ken Burns. Tom's current list of favorite documentaries are: 1. Koyanisqaatsi by Godfrey Reggio; 2. Hoop Dreams by Steve James; 3.Stories We Tell by Sarah Polley; 4.Crumb by Terry Zwigoff; 5. Montage of Heck by Brett Morgen