Monday, January 22, 2007

Broadband - S** off

Big Brother in the news again, but this time one of its execs, Endemol’s (UK) MD of Digital Media, Peter Cowley lamenting how woefully the UK lags behind the US when it comes to made-for-broadband and mobile content.

Now as a programme maker myself who's sat in on a fair few commissioning soirees, there are obvious, small minded as they are, reasons for this.

So before I act out of character I'll say to this to the 2007 generation of programme makers "go yonder and use broadband"

Make those programmes, club together, become a tour de force. Find that job, but please do not foresake a frontier wide open to stake your claim because your employee of potential one thinks little of it.

Something I remember saying at the Front Line Club, you are the brand now, and woe betide anyone telling you you can't cut it. Because if you think differently and strongly about it there is a market ready to debunk that assumption.

So why we are lacking? Would you entertain the idea of a super Teso being built in your backyard if you were the only major super market in town? Those who get this would rather keep quite. Actually it's not even that. Many prog makers still see the Net/Broadband as a piddly little indulgence for geeks.

Hey did you see that girl swallow her eyeball and then place it back in on Youtube

er sorry where did you see that on the tube... that's disgusting @$^!!

No.. youtube

Ahh that!

Many execs will give short shrift, but you only have to look at figures like Kevin Sites, JD Lassica and Cairo Live which ranks in the top 20,000 in the world.. that's enormous traffic and power for an individual.

And the future we're entering is about personlisation. I don't say TV will die, but the more great content you see online (you're probably already spending a fair few minutes travelling the blog rounds), then the less time you have to make an appointment with TV.

Sheduled programming will come in for a pasting, so go to broadband and wreak professionalism. Viva la BB

Steady David!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Ohhhh noooo! Big Brother

I'm no cultural snob, nor is my lack of watching the most suucessful show on earth got anything to do with high brow-low brow, but that simply I just don't watch Big Brother and neither have I blogged it until today.

Watching Ms Goody on News of the World's (NOTW) interview yielded a couple of thoughts.

Should she be forgiven.. should she not is not what I'm onto here, but the footage of her crying.

Ms Goody is news, more so in her contrition state. There's many a headlines and newspapers to sell charting her come back, so NOTW will make a few bob from selling her film interview around the world, not to mention the newspaper interview (ah we'll see)

But the bit where she's breaking down and invoking the symapthy of viewers towards her children is a point many in her position would have made. And you have to feel for her, but the starkness of the edit smacks of some kind of cynicism to manipulate.

In part it's television news' failure for context and also for Ms Goody's PR team, which behind the camera will be be partly controlling what you and I see. There's too much at stake in cash signs and earnings for many attached to the Goody empire. The millionairess however would have final say.

Looking helpless with full blown tears tends to work, but this is a gamble. Ms Goody has already attracted attention as a master manipulator. She would have been aware of what she was up to in the BB House, even if you can attribute some of her antics to a lapse in judgement.

Had Shilpa been evicted, in her mind it would have probably vindicated the comments she meted out.

In the film Broadcast News William Hurt's character reveals how to cry on cue. No suggestion Ms Goody did so much, but remember she's got the editing say.

I'd like to see the footage after the interview camera stopped rolling, and if I was seriously demented, the conversation with her aides would go something like this

Goody: Was that alwrite?
Team: Yes, I think you nailed it
Goody: Wasn't a bit too much?
Team: noooo, I think you got the balance just right
Gooody: But you dont fink it makes me look stoopid or something
Team: We'd be the first to tell you
Goody watches footage: Yeah that's strong. I fink my makeup's running though?
NOTW: Thanks Jade, you were great. Ring you tomorrow to talk about the other things
Jade and team leave
NOTW team asked by others: So what do you think?
NOTW Team: Beeep, beeeeeep, beep she hasn't got a beeep beep beeeeep beep.

Expect a fair newspaper commentators to weigh in, firstly because they'll be running spoilers against the NOTW and how they judge what their readers want to hear, and secondly, this issue isn't closed as the UK's Race Czar Trevor Phillips is keeping the affair alive asking for heavy censure against the BB team and Channel 4's exec.

But you can bet BB will be back.. oh yeas!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Those to watch out for

Been enjoying looking at a range of work from extraordinary video journalists and multimedia gurus. Some I'm aware of Naka Nathaniel, bloody nice guy as well; JeJen Friedberg David J. Leeson-pulitzer prize winner
Mindy McAdams- journalist & author and online journalism educator; Joe Weiss- developer of Soundslides, a multimedia authoring application; Cynthia O'Murchu; Ruud Elmendorp; Kevin Sites; and Rob Curly

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Make it go away

"We've got to get back to basics. We've got to get back to basics. We've got to get back to basics".

A refrain I'm hearing more and more. A backlash to the new deal in a cyncial attempt to play out the last vestiges of our worth as old time journalists or that simply there's a fundamental flaw in the production of today's journos.

Like most things perhaps a bit of both. If journos can't write what good is a blog. If they don't know structure sod any multimedia wizzardry they're likely to produce. If you're an educationist I can hear you already: "here here!"

If you're outside of that, phlurh! What's the fuss about?

The exclusively mutual worlds of traditional vs new seem poles apart, yet in the ever revolving door of innovation one thing seems clear: an understanding of the foundations; the building blocks of journalism, that which provides us with a moral and ethical compass as well as a hearty understanding of how to tell a story.

Foundation came up as a talking point at the Broadcast Journalism Training Council meeting at the BBC. The BBC is soon to launch a scheme, still in draft phase so Chatham House rules, that will give a leg up to new journos entering the profession.

Meanwhile my podcast interview with City University's head of journalism, Adrian Monck reveals his thinking about how the basics influence everything else. Sort of guess what? All this new media stuff wil not do away with the fundamentals.

Its is the new black and I doubt we've heard the last if its universal utterance so early in the year. Only thing is will ex-Tory Prime Minsiter John Major be swept back into power. Seems his slogan is finally catching on