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Making Good ‘Choices’: Words from the 2012 What’s Your Story? contest winners

By Lynette Owens

We are proud to have selected the winners of the 3rd annual What’s Your Story? online safety video contest.  With again some great entries and engagement from youth in the US & Canada, the 2012 judges panel gathered at our Cupertino, CA offices to view and decide the winners from a group of 30 finalists.  You can view all winners here.

A big thanks goes to our judging panel and supporting organizations for helping to spread the word and pick our winners.  A complete list of judges can be seen here.

And congratulations to all of the 2012 contestants for the hard work and effort they put into this year’s contest.  Unlike other video contests, the work does not stop with creating the video (which is plenty). It’s just as important to become an advocate for this cause (and your own entry) by getting your friends, family, and community to view, rate and comment on your work.

This year, the $10,000 grand prize went to the video club of South Grand Prairie High School, in Grand Prairie, TX.  

Their video called “Choices”, depicts a young man, his cell phone, and the decisions he makes using it, from the time he gets his first one up to a critical moment in his life.  It creatively addressed numerous issues (from bullying to sexting to texting wisely) in less than 2 minutes.

We asked the students of the SGP video club (pictured here) to tell us about their motivation and inspiration for their prize-winning video.

“We have a say in what happens to us online”

by SGP Video Club members: William Paul, Trung Huynh, Nathaniel Hargrave, Ivan Advincula, Greg Burslem, Nathaniel Fox, Arlene Zamudio, Edith Perez      

For months, we worked hard to convince South Grand Prairie High School to let us establish the school’s first video club.  We wanted an outlet for us to express our creativity through film and story-telling.  When our club was finally established, we were looking for a first project to initiate our new club and our advisor came across Trend Micro’s What’s Your Story? contest. We thought it was cool that the contest not only wanted us to make a video, but that it challenged us to educate and inform other kids about an important issue such as Internet safety. 

Just before forming the club, we had been brainstorming possible video ideas and storylines.  One such idea, by Trung, was of a guy right after a car crash and his thoughts right before the crash. We decided our video would be about how the right or wrong decisions you make online can affect your life. Our video describes someone our age who is faced with decisions about how to use his cell phone, and what can happen when you’re not making smart choices. Internet safety is like playing on a playground:  As long as you follow the rules, everyone can stay safe.

What we learned from participating in the What’s Your Story? contest is that incredible things can happen when you get together with friends to work on something you all enjoy.  We enjoyed making videos in Spanish class, decided to form a club and won our first contest. It was amazing and unexpected. We just want others to know that you can be surprised by the results if you apply yourselves.  We had to work together and figured it all out, how to work towards a deadline, which was hard. The results were awesome.

Moving forward, we plan to support our new found club and provide equipment, as well as fund other video club projects. We plan to grow our club by teaching new and younger students when they join our club.

We think it is important that we have a say in what happens to us whether it’s on the Internet, on our phones and in our lives. Life is good when we make good choices.


To view all the winners and finalists of the 2012 ‘What’s Your Story?’ online safety video contest, please visit:

To see the press release, click here.


Tags :cell phonescyberbullyingdigital citizenshipdigital literacyeducationinternet safetykidsmedia literacyonline privacysocial networkingteenswhat's your story

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