Tuesday, June 17, 2008

All in VJ day's work- the tech vs theory debate

Busy ! But I guess the following's all in a day's work.

Marking papers: It's been interesting to see the journey by students. We so often take what we do for granted, but their end-of-year reports reveal a consensus about this evolving new media way of doing things.

Being a Masters or trainee VJ student has its moments. Today, not only do you have to wrap your head around this new new thing, but you've got to be steeped in the ways of old and tried and tested.

Then there's an array of hardware and software packages you have to master and its not just what button does what but the theory that underpins these new habits.

So pity the editor in the middle quadrant of their life, whom with years of experience is utterly floored by this convoy of nonsensical events, which is why you'll want to get yourself over to as many conferences as possible.

And it's to the young that they look for answers. Oh yes, journalism may not be dead quite yet, but no one would deny it's something quite different to what they remember and it's those "young people that get this hyper media".

At Goteborg in Sweden, I saw some work from the media students covering the conference. Their films looked OK, but in two minutes of talking to them I fell into Lecture mode:

"People, you're producing something that's very safe, that the editors downstairs might find watchable, but this film is more than about them, it's about you. Give someone a reason to come back and watch these films because of yor signature".

I have a motto, that says do something that scares you everyday. To them I said go experiment and if you **** it up truth no one's going to chastise you.

Michael Lally a head honcho at RTE tells a story with a similar thread.

Michael gave over the evening slot to a community to broadcast their news on a designated evening. It was a bold and truly innovative experiment, which I advocate every broadcast manager repeat.

Only Mistake he says: the community aped their ( professionals) standards and methodology.

The woes of a lecturer
As a Lecturer there's a double whammy. You might have read Ullyses and indeed understood it, but can you assist a student seeking an action script code. And then, admit it, there's the super students who are so networked in you find yourself asking ever so often, "what's that?".

Flasha and too a less extent , has only just become part of the lexicon of an editor's attempt to come across all interactive.

Couple of years back I was informally boarded for an academic job.

My boss-to-be, a former manager at the BBC, asked me this question: What's Flash got to do with interactivity?

That was it. If the head of interactivity doesn't even know what Flash is, there's a er, well.....

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