History doesn't document itself. But in a time when almost everyone has a video camera of some kind, at least in their phone, and so many of us comment on every little thing through a blog or a Facebook status or a Tweet (now considered worthy of archiving by the Library of Congress), it does seem like this is true. Just imagine how many more comprehensive and detailed history books could be written and cable series produced if all this technology existed during the other 50,000 years of human record? What if you could compile a documentary out of video footage captured around the nation the day George Washington was elected President or the day the U.S. Civil War ended?
The thing is, most past events would also require today's speed of information to get the sort of history produced as '11/4/08,'a collaborative documentary that shows what thousands of people were doing and how they felt the day -- and the very second, simultaneously and altogether -- that Barack Obama was voted in as the first African-American President of the United States. The film was curated and edited by Jeff Deutchman out of submissions shot by 25 other camerapersons, including professional filmmakers like Henry Joost ('Catfish'), Joe Swanberg ('Hannah Takes the Stairs') and Margaret Brown ('The Order of Myths'), and shares glimpses into individual and crowd experiences from Homer, Alaska, to New Dehli, India.