Friday, April 03, 2009

The Wire - good for videojournalism

Solo - a film about videojournalism from david dunkley gyimah on Vimeo.

Chapter 13.

The Wire - good for videojournalism

Detective: The reporter comes with us?
Producer: He's a VJ..
Detective: A what?
Producer: You know they film and edit their own stuff
Detective: Unions let you do that shit?
Producer: What unions! Stopped paying subs when we lost an injunction to you guys be able to film us for records.
Detective: Yeah times move on. Guess your VJ will get an Oscar for this.
Reporter: Oscar does films, most likely shot at. Does he get a vest?
Detective: You been watching too many dramas!
Reporter: He gets a vest!
Detective: In the f*****ing Wire he do. Here we so damn down on it, be lucky if you get steel cap boots.
Reporter: Where are we anyways?
Detective: Dagenham.
Reporter **** where?
Detective: Outside London somewhere!
Reporter: Then why the hell are we talking like we Americans
Detective: We're having a "Life on Mars" moment.
Reporter: True...
[ pause]
Reporter: Does he get a vest?

There's no denying The Wire's huge influence. Realms of thesis have been written and combed over. It's only just started its BBC run.

If men would knit in public and police could be exposed for cross dressing, you'd find it in The Wire. So what's it got to do with videojournalism?

Not a lot except that it inspires to go beyond the mundane. For original VJ inspiration, Homicide - Life on the Street, is the bible. In one scene it breaks 5 TV rules. But what The Wire does is inspire thought for the way contemporary chat has moved on.

The way you might speak and access info differs broadly from the way news speaks to you in intellectual high tones. That doesn't mean journalism should dumb down, but that there is a new language that's required, a new semiotic.

As I mentioned at SXSW - the film is not enough. Now where's my vest?