The People Who Hate Us

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Paulo Alexandre : Evan, thank you for not trying to answer what is right or what is wrong. I personally wouldn't exploit a similar situation for a bunch of reasons. You can cite lack of realness, lack of sensitivity, or respect for the wishes of the subject (which, in my view, are more important than the whims of the audience), it's all of them and more. But if some people do exploit it, and can live in peace with it, I wouldn't say it's necessarily wrong. Just bear in mind that neither is him, the man swinging the broom and cursing at you. I guess part of it has to do with how intimate and personal is the issue, and how socially and politically relevant its recording would be. Wanting to see that telephone, and maybe take a picture inside the booth - that's a whim. But discussing war atrocities, nationalism and the enshrinement of war criminals/heroes is more than that; it's necessary. But I wouldn't say you would be denying me of anything, especially not actively, if you didn't report on either subject. I would recommend everyone who's planning traveling somewhere in the near future to do so without a camera. I think you will come back with an understanding of that place that you wouldn't otherwise acquire.

Life Where I'm From : Just wanted to say that I have the exact same dilemma as you when making videos. My thinking came down to that whenever you're filming people and telling their stories, whether with explicit permission or not, whether you're paying or not, you're exploiting them in some way. Sorry if you mentioned this, I watched yesterday but didn't comment until today, but did you think about the opposite side of things? The people making the videos are also being exploited as well if you think about it. Maybe it's a business that gets featured, or some activist who wants to promote a viewpoint, or a tourism agency that wants more visitors, or simply someone who gets a kick out of being in a public video. I think you're rather similar to me when making videos, where you're trying to capture some bit of truth. With all those factors in play on both sides, I do find it a struggle to tell a story that reflects reality, and it seems you do as well. Anyways, looking forward to your videos from Cuba. Keep up the great work!

hackhenk : The sentiment of this video is honestly beautiful. What a great way to end a spectacular season. Let's also show Franc the appreciation he deserves for immaculate filming technique. The drone shots from "Scars of the Secret War" are just breath taking. And a question, are you guys concidering adding some way for us to support you? I'd really like to help out.

dougpbcc : Self awareness is one of our most valuable traits. Sadly it is too rare. I am grateful in yours and your attempt to grow that trait in others

PeRK : Some may hate the term, but in my mind what best describes this Rare Earth project is philosophy. It's not the kind of philosophy that throws formal logic at you, nor is it particularly groundbreaking (most of the ideas and questions here have been around for a while already) but it is compelling. Very compelling. Perhaps it is to philosophy what scientific popularization is to science. A way in, an introduction. It's always struck me that the ideas you draw in your videos are not specific to whatever place you happen to be in. They're seemingly universal, they resonate with my own life and, I suspect, with the lives of others. I watch a video about the Burakumin, a nuclear tricycle or big funerary jars and I'm not left with any particular desire to go see those places for myself nor with some satisfaction of knowing a new bit of trivia to talk about, rather, I'm left with an idea, and I find myself drawing comparisons with my own world, my own "rare earth", the one that is directly around me and not half a world away. The locations you visit are a tapestry on which to weave these questions and derive these ideas. But it is not rare earth because what you show is exotic or far removed from my own experience, it's rare earth because it is so relatable, because what makes it rare is not the specifics of a given situation or location, what makes it rare is the same mechanics at play in my direct surroundings and in my own life. I don't feel like I have a necessarily better understanding of Japan, Cambodia, Laos, etc. thanks to Rare Earth. I do feel like I have a better understanding of my own life, or, at least, short of actual understanding, I've been led to pose some interesting questions about my own life. And isn't that what philosophy is about?

Subhransu Panda : Wow. Just wow. I don't have any other words to describe. You sir are a hidden gem on the YouTube. Glad that I discovered you.

Pholy Thach : Wow . I normally never comment on a video. But you sir are awesome. Love your video . Makes me appreciate earth so much more . Thank you.

Avery Lopez-Baines : Aye, you're in Cuba!!! Enjoy it there! Proud of my Cuban heritage!!!

arrbos : I have been a tourist in places where I've felt a similar discomfort. I'm there watching a show that's being put on for me. What right do I have to put myself in their lives? I want to make a connection with the real people, I don't want them to pretend to be something they're not for my sake. The fetishisation of the other is always lurking in the back of my mind, whether that's a farm family or reed raft group in Peru or a temple monk in Japan or a friends in LA showing me (a Canadian) around. And I can't help but wonder - do they actually hate me?

hdloki : Thanks, looking forward to the next season. Absolutely wonderful.

smAsPa : I'm long past the time when you'll see this, I'm sure - but the heart you've been putting into this series is... infectious? Inspiring? Thank you, honestly, from the bottom of my heart, for considering these issues and for talking about them so honestly. I'm. . . not sure how I feel about your conclusion - The man isn't swinging silently, because you're telling us his story. And that's important. Respect his wishes. Exploit as little as possible. Share as much as possible. And do it all with a conscience. I think you're doing things all right.

DIV AND BENNYS TRAVEL CHANNEL : We were in Hanoi in July and went to train street There was a man who had set up a tripod for his camera across the tracks from us waiting for a train to come past. The woman who you can see at 1:20 has a young son who warned the man at least 10 times that he was too close to the tracks and that the train would hit his camera. He just kept ignoring the young boy. Finally after waiting around half an hour for the train to pass the man soon realised the mistake he had made and had to grab his camera and run down a stairway 😂 . It was probably my favourite video I got in my visit to Hanoi. If a local is trying to give you advise, LISTEN TO THEM! THEY KNOW BETTER THAN YO DO!

Dumman007 : There's a fine line between sharing experiences and history that defines a culture, and tourism that tries to show who they are and why they are but ultimately fails to show either. Having visited over 35 different countries, I know this to be very real, as this video and explained this. One thing that tourism can do, despite our best wishes, is to rob a society of it's culture and replace it with a tourism friendly culture. One that has changed to fit the customs of the people who come to look, but if closely looked at, still has the echoes and shadows of it's former culture. This video shows me that what you're attempting to do is hard, but I wish you luck to continue to share the experiences and history of a culture, instead of changing it.

Shibop : Incredible video. I respect your decision. I will always treasure the experiences that you share with us. Thank you for making videos and please continue.

Ratatad : Someone will always hate you. Damn if you do damn if you don't. For every man with a broom there is another pleading to be heard.

Jo King : Self awareness, is the most helpful, harmful thing that we have.

Ringkun Mori : Man, you are like, the better version of vice

MAGIK MANN : this is such an underviewed channel and thats such a shame, the quality of this channel is astounding and the content more so

ScubaTony Anschutz : WOW! What a wonderful reflection. Great questions that are both true and not. The answers will evolve as we do. Well done sir! Can't wait to see Cuba through our lens.

Charles Damery : From the first video, I've looked at this series as one that would tell me stories about places that I'd never get to. On November 2, 2017 I suffered a major heart and ended up having a 3 way bypass. I got my sister to get me a laptop computer I could use in the hospital, I ended up in there for 34 days, 14 of with I was bed ridden. videos like this kept me going, something to look forward every week, that's what I used my computer, to aid in my recovery. I'm looking forward to season 3.

Aeon Productions : Mate, I normally do not comment on videos... but big time kudo's man. You are one of too few people that really care about how you tell your story to others. What is journalism, what is filming, etc. On top of that, you seem like a really kind and nice dude (eh, Canadians really live up to their stereotypes I guess ;D) and incorporate a little humor alongside serious talk in your videos. Keep this up and I hope you stay as true to your vision/mission as you are now!

formerly 987946216430 : another great episode guys. very important questions to ask yourself.Thanks Kata, cheers from PEI Canada, Bryan.

Joshua J : Beautifully said.

shade_grey : I think that the stories that some people don't want to be told can be the most important. It tells us something about ourselves that some of us won't like. Would it benefit us to know those things? Speaking personally, there are stories that I do not wan't to be told. It'll expose me, render me emotionally naked to a gawking audience. The question is, would it benefit me if those stories were told? Would it benefit other people?

Erigorn - Erik : For once, Youtube added a good video in the recommended section... Say hello to a new subscriber :)

Immanismjr : May i ask what that guy did at around 2:11?

David DiGiacomo : Thank you for making these Ethan! I watched all of your videos while going through painkiller withdrawls, and they really helped me get through that hell. I apreciate all that you do. Thank you.

Jonatan Schewe : Dear Evan, the level of reflection in your videos is unprecedented! Keep up the good work. I want encourage you to take on even more complex topics in the future!

Manolis Theofilos : The point is, we had no right to know about the phone in the first place.

chrisisteas : I think the best solution for this is to sometimes show the influence tourists can have to a place. Like the video "The Town Where Gap Year Kids Went To Die" or with a video like this. Because I think not enough travelers realise that just by being there, the place is different.

Circe : This is a deep and thought-provoking video. Thanks. As far as exploitation goes, you are right to say that 'somebody will always be exploited' one way or another. Socrates proposed the idea of 'virtue ethics', which judges a person not on their actions, but their intent. This I think is important when considering our impact on others. 'Exploiting' is one way to see it, but it is also a very skewed perception. For those who were willing to accept money and be filmed, it is a symbiotic relationship. Yet, for the wind phone, it sounds like more like ignorance than exploitation to me. We need to make these distinctions clear in order not to murky the waters of true injustices in this world. Somebody waving a broom at you because you took their picture is one thing, filming a dead person in a suicide forest and then laugh about it is something completely different. As long as your intentions are pure, and as long as you take time to reflect on your actions and its potential consequences, I think you have behaved responsibly. :)

defect833 : This series has been a amazing change from the typical content on YouTube. Your consideration and willingness to change the script post recording is beautiful. Please continue your journey telling the stories like they have never been told before.

Edward Fenning : Why do we travel? For some, it's to expand the mind. Get to know a different culture and respect it then reflect it upon our own. For others, it's an escape. We want to be taken out of our own reality of customs and traditions, a reminder we exist and empower our lives by having that culture serve us for a little while. But really, both those answers are the same, as both take something no matter how well intentioned. When we want a more "genuine" experience it means connecting, a relationship. And a relationship, no matter how fleeting, asks you to invest some of yourself in it. We as people can maybe manage tens of relationships, but hundreds? Thousands? The tourist is not managing that, for them it is a unique association with a unique place, whereas to those we "leave behind" you were just another person arriving with a relationship that wanted to take in some small way, that the next 10,000 probably will too. I mean, maybe it's not even just a tourist thing. Just a miscommunication over something that excites one party without realising they're producing a common response in what to them is a novel situation. Like as a UK person when I lived in the US, the first 5 or so people who loved my accent it was all, yeah, that's pretty cool. But the next few 100, who'd want me to perform whilst thinking it was hilarious to do their own "Cor Blimey Guv" Dick Van Dyke cockney accent in turn, I hated the repeat experience. Anyway, I've really loved this series, it's been a very thoughtful leading through some very complex ancient & modern history, that ultimately knows how to keep a good hook by storifying it, without losing that wider awareness. And at 10 mins instead of an hour it's a much easier thing to fit in around my day.

jordan elliott : I don't have a right to hear someone else's story. You don't have a right to tell someone else's story against their wishes. News is one thing, but "human interest journalism" tends to exploit. People are both lascivious and cruel.

Cooper Beggs : You are amazing, I love you. This is great. Absolutely great.

Ben : Came from Tom's channel. Loved the video, subscribing and binge watching your videos. Amazing stuff.

Zz.zZ : Did the owner of the wing phone really kick you out? Oh my, the story was heart warming and all, but I don't know what to feel now. My impression of him has been completely smashed.

RBMRoman : i wish i had as large an assortment of graphic tees as evan

Jason Lieberman : it is invasive to document someone against their will, unless it is being done to expose some harm they are doing

Ryan Ohlson : Regardless of whether you consider yourself a true documentarian or not, this series, from the very first episode, is by far some of the most engaging and thought provoking content of this sort I've ever seen. The presentation and subject matter are tastefully and respectfully handled, and each video leaves me with a ton of things to think about after. To leave such an impact in just a few short minutes, so consistently, speaks to your skill at what you do. I can't wait for the next season, and I hope it continues for many more, because this is top notch stuff that deserves much more attention, and is easily one of my favorite series on youtube.

Ben Hewitson : Evan, I though I had an answer for your question but by minute 3 the superficial response I had in my head started to mature over the following hours and subsequent re watches of your video. I don't have the skills to enter this debate on what is right and wrong but I can't help but feel you know what you're doing. Some times we look to people to answer the questions we haven't thought to ask and I'm satisfied to hear your story and either agree with your view or not and to use your experience as starting point and put my own twist and experiences on it. That's probably selfish of me to just rely on someone else but there it is. Evan and team. Thank you.

Rick Charles : Great video, I think the exchange of information and intimacy falls on relationships, those who want relationship are allways willing to share. Yes it might be time intensive or money intensive to befriend the locals and gather a genuine experience. But in the end youl allways have a friend and your going to make friends online buy sparking the right emotion, your fanbase will be a community and communities allways rally to help there leaders. The host of rare earth needs to find his "why", I would ask the host why does he film this, what experiences in his personal life lead him to start filming,Maybe his rally cry is to gather people against oppression, to help the underdog. Maybe his rally cry is to expose poverty in the modern world. Maybe it's to expose injustice forgotten.maybe....... The point is its the host sharing a piece of his soul when he takes us on his journey so he needs to get his "why" in order.

Michael Goelz : I feel compelled to share my adoration but everything I type feels like an empty platitude. I feel so humbled by your content, even just the silliness and thoughtfulness of the outro slide. Evan and Francesco and Chris, you are humans worth aspiring towards.

Andy Lord : These are already great!

scubadrew9292 : Didn't show the train!

Gregory Bogosian : 5:35 "mutual exploitation" is an oxymoron. Exploitation necessarily implies that one party is getting more out of it than the other.

Mohammad Arif Anuar : great topic brought up again as always, thanks ma dudes. hope u guys wont sellout to tv like ur father did 😂

Hey Joe : You can see a layer deeper than most, kudos, very few people like that around.

the artist formally known as craig lastname : Simple. It's exploitation if the person being filmed doesn't want to be filmed. It's also exploitation if the motive for filming is about career, money and glory. Many of these film makers really don't care about the subject and only care about the shot.

sk'mo : Whether your work exploits people can be determined through one concept: reciprocity. Are you giving back in equal measure to what you have taken? Your example of paying the villagers is a good example of this. When you offered money, they reciprocated with work; when you shared your gifts, they shared their emotion. And this goes further. When you went to film the telephone booth and were confronted by those whose lives it was attached to, you had nothing to offer in return. You could not give back in kind because what you where taking was so personal and so intimate that all you can offer is -nothing-. Reciprocity is what determines if what we do which benefits us is harmful to others. The caveat to this is that we must be honest with ourselves in our reflection on our actions and allow those whose lives we affect to have a voice in those decisions, lest we rationalize ourselves into doing harm.