Decoding ISIS

Current Affair / Reportage
Riccardo Mazzon, Antonio Albanese and Graziella Giangiulio
German / Spanish / Portuguese / Italian / English
Production Company
Todos Contentos y yo Tambien and Magnolia
Year of production

Each of the Islamic State's terrifying actions is accompanied by carefully staged videos whose purpose is horrifying the Western audiences on the evening news and inflame the Muslim ones. Before being a war machine, ISIS is a huge machine of propaganda employing over 100 Western technicians, with 40 broadcaster and professional production companies. But what lands on our screens is only a tiny part of the hundreds of clips uploaded daily. For two years, 7 experts with different skills – among which an arabist, experts of military strategies, finance and IT- scanned the maze of the Net , monitored over 5000 social networks accounts of ISIS supporters worldwide, downloaded hours of content and analyzed it. Did ISIS invent a new “format”? Not at all. Its deadly “show schedule” is made of communication codes, rules and formats already invented end tested by its bitter enemy: the West. “DECODING ISIS” is the result of that work. And what it reveals is an organization that is as media savvy and it is bloodthirsty.