Essex graduate, Ahmed Faid (BA Economics, 2017), is taking words from the street on to social media thanks to investment from the LA tech incubator Yellow, run by Snapchat’s owner, Snap Inc.
“I still remember the first time I went onto the streets of London with my camera, it took me THREE HOURS just to speak to one person.”
We spoke with Ahmed to find out his journey from Essex graduate to Dose of Society founder.
Dose of Society is a video platform for young people all around the world to share and upload views on what is going on in their lives. Content can be about anything, but is mainly fast reports from global events. We asked Ahmed how the idea came to fruition, he explained:
“In 2011 I turned 16 and my view of the world changed, I realised that I was part of a generation that was misunderstood, voiceless and definitely frustrated. Nine years later, that was still the case and I questioned myself, where is the place where real people with real stories can have honest conversations?
“So, that’s when I decided to pick up a camera and speak to young people myself. I didn’t know anything about filming or editing, all I knew that I wanted to do something. I wanted to cut through the noise and create a platform that facilitated conversations with people who may not share the same opinions, but all feel like they can have a seat at the table and share their voice. In October 2015, Dose of Society was born!”
Ahmed’s confidence and filming skills have come a long way since 2015, and he shares how:
“I didn’t have a clue what my idea was going to turn into, when I released my first video, people loved it! You’ll never believe it took me three hours to get one person to speak to me the first time I stepped on the streets of London with my camera. I was terrified to speak to people!
“I took one deep breath and remembered I had nothing to lose and everything to gain, and I just let go of my fear and took a leap of faith.
“A few years later I was in LA pitching in front of Snapchat executives.”
Self-confidence is a feeling that everyone can relate to, even someone who interviews strangers every day can have self-doubt, Ahmed comments:
“My biggest challenge is my mind, self-doubt always plays with me and then I feel like an imposter.
“When things got hard with university and starting my business, I would always ask myself, can I really do this? Am I even smart enough? And when that happened, I would always tend to watch videos that motivated or inspired me and that would bring me back to life!”
We asked Ahmed to share some words of wisdom for anyone looking to start-up their own business, he said:
“Just start, there are 101 ways to make it happen, just choose one. At University you have so much time to start a business, don’t waste that time, use it to learn skills and make money.
“Use that time wisely, you got this.”
Communications and External Relations, University of Essex
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