WITNESS was founded in 1992 by musician and activist Peter Gabriel and the Reebok Human Rights Foundation as a project of the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (now Human Rights First). In 1988, Peter was part of Amnesty International’s Human Rights Now! Tour. He was struck by the stories he heard from survivors of human rights abuses and the lack of attention these stories received. Peter had brought along one of the first camcorder models and realized the potential of video as a tool against abuse; he noted that perpetrators of abuses were often brought to justice when photographic or video evidence of abuses existed.
You can read more about WITNESS here.
WITNESS videos have been used:
• to promote grassroots education and mobilization
• to corroborate allegations of human rights violations
• as a resource for news broadcasts
• to catalyze human rights advocacy via the worldwide web
• as evidence in court and quasi-judicial hearings
• to complement official written reports of human rights abuses
• as a deterrent to further abuse