David - what has been the reaction to this melding of Solo VJ'ism and this new language of cinema - especially those entrenched in the stodginess of traditional journalism?
Does this new melding elude to the idea of rules are meant to be broken - and thus a new way of reporting is born or is it to appease the masses for a softer, more entertaining way to consume the news?
This may be the catalyst I need to get creative after a dry spell this winter.
Cliff Etzel - Solo Video Journalist
I can't generalise as you're always going to find resistance in news making: it has embedded rules and what nots for so long that established organs are likely to continue as is, until. . .
Television, film, painting - they're all living arts.
The geneology of painting has travelled through Impressionism, Expressionism, Dadaism, Modern and Contemporary Art and that's just talking about western models.
Each time one of the forms found public space it had its detractors and supporters.
Cinema - likewise, and that's where many TV practitioners borrow heavily from.
Eisenstein's Battle Ship Potemkin - 1925 is one of the most heavily used "canvas films" indelibly influencing a generation.
Canvas film = deconstructed with style and shots used in further cinema.
Film techniques absorbed by TV such as linear causality and parallel narrative,Argentine author and film critic Jorge Luis Borges was talking about way back when.
News is documentary or film verite, but the tools used in collecting images are no different than the painters' brush.
As we become more televisually literate, we demand more, because a lot of what we see looks homogeneously the same.
Our language becomes more sophisticated. Our visual acuity becomes more enhanced.
A telling example: my mother and many others find Bourne's editing style confusing. A new generation need not refer to any visual dictionary to understand exactly what's going on.
The sacrosanct argument is you can't embellish news. But we do that anyway by way of subjectivity and the person/ organ informing you - albeit without design news execs will say.
( Don't worry I understand the argument of news making - though there needs to be a contemporary debate about it)
What Videojournalism or Man with a movie Camera or even IM6VJ - Intergrated Multimedia 6 Videojournalism offers is a new lingua franca.
It's no different to the camera in the hands of a skilled director e.g. Abbas Kiarostami.
The web as a mega broadband pipe and interactive coding has more to give - and its getting it in terms of "the new painters", solo reportage - expanding the agenda and seeking new discourses.
Consider this for instance - call me naive - but given our many shared problems, why do we still use TV news a divisive medium.
Sorry but I could fill hours talking about this.
In the end something that has never been done, awaits to be done. Many might throw their hands in a resentment, but that won't stop the many others looking to make new meaning of the tools we possess.
p.s Incidentally this reponse is not to say factual TV hasn't undergone change.
Two pivotal points in my career
1. BBC Reportage late 80s - early 90s which introduced MTV reportage. Yes you needed a crew, but the gene of Reportage would find its way into many BBC docs and factual programmes e.g. Here and Now, Black Britain, Panorama.
2. 1994 World News Conference - a Canadian graphic designer refines the split graphic interface that would become a hall mark of CNN.
ps2. Breaking the rules? No, not for the sake of it, but the rules of TV were set up tp enable new comers to the medium to make proficient TV.
They're guidelines, that's all they are.