Saturday, 30 September 2017

CRITICAL PERSPECTIVES: Essay Question's & Research

New skills:
- To develop research and critical writing skills further
- Independent study & dissertation writing

Project submission details
10th November 1500-1600hr
- Draft submission of essay. Hard copy on paper, properly formatted using Harvard.

15th December 1000-1100hr
- Final submission of essay
- Essay - hard copy on paper, submitted through turnitin.

Essay question choices:
1) Discuss and critically analyse the view that "with a successful adaptation, the original work is transformed into something new and different, although retaining many traces of what it was formerly" with reference to at least one text adapted for broadcast on television.


2) Analyse the implications of online journalism and the extent to which "we are all journalists now", making reference to examples of both traditional broadcast journalism and citizen journalism.

Essay Q1
What is this question asking you to consider?
- If you adapt something will it always make it better and different?
- Does it ruin the original?
- If it has traces of the original is it really new and different?

What television broadcast/s could you consider referencing as case studies?
- Pride and Prejudice (BBC) - adapted from book - TV - film.
- Sherlock - book - TV
- The Series of Unfortunate Events - book - film - TV
- Game of Thrones
- 13 Reasons Why (Netflix) - book - TV
- Dexter (1st season) - novel (Darkly Dreaming Dexter) - TV
- Orange is the New Black
- Lucifer
- The Walking Dead
- Romeo & Juliet

What are the challenges in answering this option and using your chosen case study?
- Comparing adaptations to the original
- Remaining unbiased

Essay Q2
What is this question asking you to consider?
- Impact of user generated content
- Is citizen journalism becoming more prevalent in online journalism?
- In what ways is citizen journalism used in online journalism? Twitter?

What are the challenges in answering this option and using your chosen case study?
- Arguing both sides of the question

Group feedback discussion:

Essay Q1
Discuss and critically analyse the view that "with a successful adaptation, the original work is transformed into something new and different, although retaining many traces of what it was formerly" with reference to at least one text adapted for broadcast on television.

- Original form must have been a book.
- Will be helpful if the TV choice has been through a few adaptations.

- Subjective term e.g. box office/barb (viewer numbers)
- Successful can mean a few series or it has been frequently adapted - critical response to it.
- How well has it done at the box office? find out at broadcast magazine/IMDb
- Look in the press for a critical response to it - The Times etc.

- The translation process
- Journalism/news

"traces of what it was formerly"
- The basic plot isn't changed
- However audience doesn't stay the same
- What we think is acceptable changes
- Some of the traces from the plot are their characters
- Author decides characters
- Tone

"into something new and different"
- Put into a modern context
- Use of technology
- Book, online, film
- Films always have to keep attraction with action etc. but books don't need to do this
- Easily can judge the film if you've read the book

Essay Q2
Analyse the implications of online journalism and the extent to which "we are all journalists now", making reference to examples of both traditional broadcast journalism and citizen journalism.

What is a benefit of being a citizen journalist?
- Can be in more than one place
- Very democratic

CRITICAL PERSPECTIVES: Research & writing skills

Questions to ask when selecting & researching a case study
- Where was it made?
- When was it made?
- Who made it?

Questions to ask when analysing your case studies
- What has influenced the nature of the media product - its character: physical/visual?
- Who made it? artists/designer
- These could be creative; critical/conceptual/technological/science bound and connect to contemporary or traditional modes of practice and cultural developments.

- Find out how was it made, processes techniques small or large scale production
- Find out about the audience/consumer demographic
- Look around for the critical reception of the piece of media you are analysing e.g. reviews, articles, critical writings, papers, catalogues, books
- Find out what is/was the intention or motivation of the creator... a personal project or small/mass scale piece of work
- Research and ask... who's interest does the media product serve?
- Who benefits from it being made and does its production support an ideological position?
- Is it/was it part of a propaganda campaign - pro something? (may be subtle)

Meaning and semiotics
- What meanings are generated by the adaption or news piece?
- What are the social and cultural mechanisms of communication (symbolic / visual / formal / textual / textural / auditory / verbal)
- What are the connotations and meanings being formed - are these "re-generated" - intended or not?
- CONTEXT - Consider reviews/papers or re-readings or meaning after time has evolved or after other cultural or global changes - e.g. political
- Consider also the intertextual relationship that exists now between all media products in culture - books, gaming, cinema, small screen, online, etc - they can refer to and connect to one and another

Expand knowledge and power to interpret/self analyse
- Will help to develop rich case studies and select relevant and interesting examples of creative output to elaborate around and theorise around

Developing your academic writing/planning:
- Research and create plan
- Plan intro, begin to draft
- Create and maintain reference list
- Proof read, edit and refine reference list

What is critical writing?
The most characteristic features of critical writing are:
- a clear and confident refusal to accept the conclusions of other writers without evaluating the arguments and evidence they provide
- a balanced presentation on reasons why the conclusions of other writers may be accepted or may need to be treated with caution
- a clear presentation of your own evidence and argument, leading to conclusion

Avoid overly descriptive writing
- The difference between descriptive writing and critical writing
- With descriptive writing you are not developing argument; you are merely setting the background within which as argument can be developed
- You are being descriptive if you are representing the situation as it stands, without presenting any analysis or discussion
- Descriptive writing is relatively simple. There is also the trap that it can be easy to use many words from your word limit simply providing description.
- In providing only description, you are reporting ideas but not taking them forward in any way

Referencing sources
Referencing is:
- a formal, academic convention which allows for the acknowledgement of the use of other peoples ideas and work
- when we refer to, paraphrase, summarise or quote from any work produced by others then we must state where we found our information
- identify key positive and negative aspects you can comment upon;
- assess their relevance and usefulness to the debate that you are engaging in for your assignment; and identify how best they can be used

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

DIGITAL NEWS: #StopTheTrucks Mock News Production

We were all set a task to create a small news piece, with simply just the presenter, news reporter and the interviewee which will help prepare us with our own news project. Helen gave each group a different article to create the news report on, ours was #StopTheTrucks, about transporting animals long distances overseas for slaughtering. We started by researching into the topic to see if the news article were correct in its facts and figures. We found some statistics were different on the Save The Trucks campaign website to the paper article -

We had to devise a story structure and angle and then create a script which we will act out and film on Thursday. We also had to come up with a headline and tag which would grab our audiences attention and make them want to watch our programme.

HEADLINE: One million join the fight to stop transportation of live animals for slaughter.

TAG: The European Commission is under pressure today as one million people sign a petition to put an end to long, live transport of animals overseas.

Story structure and angle

Presenter lead
  • Live transport overseas could be ended after a petition has reached over one million signatures.
  • The RSPCA seeks to stop the shipment of animals overseas to prevent the suffering caused by the long distance journeys.
  • The RSPCA has been campaigning over the matter for 20 years.

Interview / reporter
  • The RSPCA surveyed the British public and 66% were ‘appalled’ by live animals being transported long distances for slaughter.
  • Campaigns, Eyes on Animals and TSB/AWF carried out an investigation and found animals st
    arving and without water in a truck parked in direct sunlight for 24 hours. Sheep were made to wait 5 days before continuing their journey and standing on carcasses of lambs that were trampled to death.
  • The RSPCA campaign, Stop The Trucks, will be asking that an eight hour limit is imposed on all transportation of animals for slaughter. Here we have David Bowles, head of public affairs at the RSPCA. How pressing is this issue?
  • “This shipment of live animals for slaughter and further fattening overseas continues to be legal in the UK, this issue is something the RSPCA is deeply concerned about”.
  • And I understand that there is a petition that is being handed to the European Commission?
  • About petition...
  • Thanks David... back to the studio.

Back to Presenter

Research & facts
- 66 percent of people appalled by live animals being transported long distances for slaughter and almost 7 out of 10 believe that animals should only be slaughtered in the country they have been reared.
- Cramped, o
vercrowded conditions
Transported hundreds, sometimes thousands of miles as far as the middle east
- The EC is responsible for proposing legislation and making decisions across the EU and so their input is vital to ensure animals are being treated humanely.
- Raising public awareness that will push the EC to change the law and put an end to this tragedy


Rough script:

Presenter in studio

“Good evening and welcome to the 6 o’clock news, I’m Alex Hargood. The European Commision is under pressure today as one million people sign a petition to put an end to long live transport of animals overseas. Reporter Katie Joslin is at the Port of Dover.”
Reporter in the field
“Thanks Alex, a petition calling for a stop to shipping animals has reached one million signatures.  I’m here in Dover where trucks carrying livestock will be taken across Europe for slaughter.  The RSPCA, which is a member of Eurogroup for animals has been campaigning for the last 20 years to put an end to shipping animals overseas.  They believe these journeys can cause a lot of suffering for animals being transported to slaughterhouses.  The group has been pushing for this particular agenda for the last 18 months reached this milestone today, hitting one million signatures on an online petition.  I’m here with David Bowles from the RSPCA, David how significant is this?”
Reporter with interviewee (David Bowles)
  • What sort of conditions do these animals face?
  • How much responsibility falls on the European Commission?
  • What more needs to be done?

Shoot day

The following Thursday we put our script into action and filmed our news report. Alex was the news presenter, Katie was the reporter at a 'live' location and Jason was the interviewee from the RSPCA while I was on the sound and helped with the camera and held up some lines for Katie and Jason to read from. We started with filming the presenter scene with Alex. We were introduced to a new piece of equipment which reflected an iPad screen with the script on it so Alex could read while looking at the camera.

We had a few problems with the clip mic to start with which reduced our green screen time but once it was sorted we got straight into the filming. The scene from the news room went really well, looked really professional and Alex did a great job.

It was then Katie and Jasons' turn, Alex and myself were on the camera and sound and I also held up some the script for Katie as she had quite a lot to say. They both did really well, a couple of times we got slightly caught up with the words and Katie was further on in the script to what I was showing her. We took a couple of takes but in the end we completed the whole piece with no mistakes (apart from Katie laughing at the end - but that was edited shorter which made it look better) and we were very pleased with our first little news piece. 

Katie edited it for us and put Alex in a news room with the green screen and put captions so the audience would know who everyone is. She also put in the little LIVE caption so the audience also knew when we were 'live'. 

What went well?
The green screen part went well, Alex could see the words clearly and it didn't sound like he was reading from a screen. Katie and Jason did a really good job, especially Jason as he had to make up his answers and they linked with the questions very well. 

What didn't go well?
The only thing which didn't work so well was the problem with the equipment at the beginning. We have now learnt to always check the equipment when setting up and make sure it works well, therefore, we shouldn't waste any time during filming. 

Final news report:

Below is our final news report edited together. We were really happy with the outcome.

Group feedback with Helen:
- Clear opening - knew who Alex was/what he was doing/where were going next
- Nice writing
- Maybe too much information from Katie - said bits that Jason should have said as he's the one who knows about the topic
- Rehearse, quick run through to make the info easier for Jason
- Too much pressure on Jasons' part
- Tripod was tricky to follow action - handheld? In real life it would have been on handheld.
- Don't have to cut back to person talking - already had Katie introduced could have stayed on Jason
- Stick with the person on camera for longer - find the shot and stick with it
- Story was really clear/clean
- Can bring mic down further, good quality sound from further away
- Shot on Alex is a bit soft? Check settings? Depth of field - person moves and then is out of focus

We have taken on all the advice from Helen and will bare it all in mind when filming our real news production. 

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

DIGITAL NEWS: (Lecture) Writing & Storytelling for News

Journalism requires quick and concise writing.

Good writing
- Have something to say
- Read books
- Manipulate language
- Plain English
- Single syllables
- Be direct
- Know your medium
- What is the burden I want my script to carry? - aims of storytelling
- Write short sentences - more than 16 words, sentence is too long
- Clarity & precise
- Use adjectives sparingly
- Conversational
- Simplify

Consider writing techniques which can help the 'reading' of your story
- Alliteration
- Avoid repetition
- Wordplay e.g. It's a new Dawn for Jennifer - the comedy partnership spanning thirty years is finally over...
- Rule of three - One or two is too few many, three is just right e.g. got up, got out of bed, brushed a comb through my head.
- Similes & metaphors
- Personification
- Exaggeration
- Relatable comparisons - something complex? give the viewer something to relate it too e.g. staggering 1000 metres long, equivalent to a football pitch

The 'P.A.G.E F' test
- spelt correctly, good grammar, think like a viewer

- hand in hand with trust - ensuring you present the facts accurately is a given in any form of journalism, get names or titles spelt correctly, all information is up to date (persons title etc) especially if a graphic on the screen
- Case study -

- i.e. relevant - are the facts necessary? Test them for relevance to ensure your story is tight and does not waste time on unnecessary elements
- Know your story which can only be done through thorough, well executed research

- Ensuring balance is a key task in journalism. Making sure you view your story objectively and give equal priority to all central parties concerned.

- Logic - the 'natural order' - walk the viewer through the story
- Tie-writing - using scripting to naturally link or corner turn from one point to the next

Write it in the correct order
- Write the LEAD-IN first (the intro to the story read by the news anchor), the then PACKAGE and then your TAG
- Don't repeat the lead in within your package
- Wordy writing
- Overkill of facts and figures / keep them simple
- 'Leads' and 'tags' - brief and to the point

How to write a good 'lead' and/or 'tag'
- Attention grabbing
- Concise and not overloaded with facts
- Should sound fresh and new
- Be written in an 'active voice'
- Be creative
- Conversational in tone
- Use narrative to tell the story (storytelling lecture)

Attention grabbing
- Clear top line
- They can then therefore decide whether it's relevant to them and whether they want to watch the item
- Think of it like your longline that would be used in a pitch
- Often you need do no more than tease the viewer, entice them to want to know more
- Give them enough, but not the whole picture

- Don't weigh down your leads with facts - remember to keep them to the salient points in terms of their impact
- In fact many people think the best leads are fact free! Keep the tone engaging but more general and easy to relate/identify with
- The facts belong to the main body of the story
- One sentence is one thought
- Your telling the viewer the key elements that they want to hear i.e. "stay with us - you don't want to miss the tragic story

Finding an 'active' voice
SVO method

- Writing about the person or persons doing the action first then what they do and lastly the target of their action.

Conversational tone
- Write as if you are imparting some important news to a friend - almost a 'gossip' voice - write as you speak
- Tease the audience, "it could be me!" rather than "I don't live their I don't care."

Things to avoid
- 'Journalese' - artificial exaggerated or embellished writing - those well worn phrases which are so familiar they feel like a parody

Write to pictures
- What we watch and what we say need to match up. It should be thematically in tune with the pictures
- Look at pictures
- Listen to sounds
- Talk to picture editor
- Polish, polish, polish
- Write to the presenters voice
- Don't be too literal

Writing for Live News/Studio content

Writing for a news anchor (segue words)
- Meanwhile
- And
- Well
- Back home
- Now to, (sports...)

Headlines and comings up
- A menu of the main stories
- Top story
- In order of importance & ending with something lighter - the "and finally..."
- Tell the viewer what is coming up

- Know your audience
- Sell your story
- Match the headline
- Read out loud
- Tempt the viewer
- Check the facts
- Make it easy to read
- The responsibility of the script will lie with the producer

Scripting OOV/SOT
- Scripting this sort of story requires the ability to discern good sound bites from interviews and script in and out of them
- The studio script must indicate when and where the video is supposed to start and its duration so that the director is forewarned
- Ensure the presenter is aware when to stop reading the VO and allow the SOT to take over
- Direction through the ear piece from the gallery OR
- Put the SOT on a separate source to play out so that the sound is separate and can be mixed into the gallery
- Presenter should be in vision when finishing filming

Scripting a news package
- If possible work out key elements of your film on paper before filming
- Work out your shot list and scripted elements such as the PTC
- Scripting will allow you to be sure you know what you need to shot
- Ensure you give your presenter a purpose - make them active in the film - doing something relevant to the story
- Means that we as the audience can feel vicariously connected to the piece and have greater understanding and empathy with the subject

Who is involved in the story?
What are they doing now?
What happens next?

Decide how we want to tell the story
Your decision will be made with regard to the following considerations:
- Access
- Time
- Duration
- Angle
- Essentials

- Thinking of your package as a whole

Narratives are structured in the following ways:
- Chronologically - don't mess around with the timeline
- Most up to date info/pix first - then return to recount the story in it's entirety
- Story told through strong central character - relatable
- Answer the 5 'W's' - What, When, Why, Where, Who

Prepare for the edit
- Prior to editing you will need to view, log and transcribe your interviews

Studio workshop prep
We are going to:
- Devise story structure and angle
- Write script & tag on your story
- Script PTCs/walky talky for a reporter to tell story
- Remember WIIFM

Thursday, 21 September 2017

DIGITAL NEWS: (Workshop) Panasonic DVX 200

Friday was an opportunity to try out the new 4K cameras that came into the studios for our course. This was exciting as these cameras are equipment which we haven't used before and they have a set of new features, such shooting in 4K, VFR (variable frame rate) for shooting in slow motion and advanced image stabilisation. We all got a play with the cameras to find the basic skills - SWEFF (sound, white balance, exposure, focus and framing). We also needed to find out how to digitise our footage because that was different from the other cameras we've used in the previous projects.

After looking at the cameras and their new settings and buttons we were unable to have a lot of time filming with them but we did try a slow motion shot using the VFR setting; Alex shot it at 120 FPS/1080p of Katie throwing a ball in the are which looked really impressive in the slo-mo (above). It was interesting to see the difference between these new cameras and the Sony EX cameras we used last year, especially in the layout. The Panasonic cameras will help us make higher quality videos and I am very much looking forward to trying out these cameras again and maybe using them in my future projects.

DIGITAL NEWS: Ideas Lab with Jo Clark

Jo was really impressed with our initial ideas and loved the e-cigarettes and hangover cure ideas. She also said she had a contact we could use as one of her friends works with Macmillan. We spoke to her with just our group, her feedback is below:

- Good to get lots of peoples opinions on alcohol hangovers, maybe a from a doctor and someone from Macmillan for Stoptober.
- Have a back-up plan
- Facts from Drink Aware, contact them
- Alcohol free drinks, who are the suppliers and give them a call.
- E-cigs is the main topic for 2 minute live piece - more topical, more relevant at this time
- If e-cigs don't work out, can use alcohol
- Speak to a doctor
- Go to a smokers anonymous/smokers association - their take on e-cigs
- Work out the cost comparison between e-cigs and real cigarettes

Our work in response to the feedback:

Jo's contact - Mcmillan volunteer:
Katie has a connection with a doctor in a surgery.

We went through the structure of our news piece together. We need a 2'00'' live section and a package. We all agreed that the 'live' section will definitely be about the e-cigarettes as we have better ideas for that one and then end with the lighter-hearted item about hangover cures for the package. We think this will be difficult to make into the 'live' section with the correct tone so this is why we want the e-cigarettes to be the 'live'.

The plan at the moment is to see if we know of any parties coming up with friends so we can do a bit of filming then. Then maybe ask them to try different hangover cures and see which one works.

We started thinking more about contacts and who we would like to get in touch with. Below are some follow up ideas that we all edited on Google Docs and potential contacts that we found, and Alex drafted out an email that we can use if we can't get through to people on the phone:

DIGITAL NEWS: Lecture Notes

Sources and contacts:
- A broadcast journalist relies on a wide range of sources and contacts in the never ending search NEW news!
- The best journalists do not just sit and wait for a story to 'appear', they go out and FIND it...

How to find new sources:
1. Newspapers
2. Viral - social media
3. Word of mouth - "whistleblower", "anecdotal"
4. News agencies e.g. reuters
6. PR. / pressure groups
7. Police

How journalists find stories with 'news value'
- Working what Fishman (1997) called 'beats' - 'patrolling' much like a police officer on recognised chains of information to supply potential stories with 'news value'.
- What 'beats' form part of this chain of information (refer to numbers above)
- Many of these 'beats' are exclusively accessed by news journalists, e.g. calling police stations or press offices.
- But in doing so, what other stories are ignored? Is it right to give priority to those particular sources?
- On the outside you're nodding and agreeing, on the inside you're doubting and questioning what's in it for them.

PUBLIC DOMAIN - something you can't report on, someone else does it on social media and we report on that.

Where the newsroom find it's stories...
Primary sources
- Your own direct contacts
- Original sources direct from source material e.g. archive material from libraries etc. such as Kew (National Archives)
- Public appeals
- Press releases / stats / official statements - all of these are someone's p.o.v. Someone wants you to think of these their way, e.g. unemployment issues.
- Don't just spout out what someone else tells us - be careful.

Secondary sources
- Stringers (freelancers)
- Other platforms/media

(refer to numbered list above) e.g. PA. & reuters
- The material on news wires is provided by in house and freelance journalists.

- These subject specialists work in the newsrooms and are prized for their in depth knowledge and well honed contacts - often invited to confidential 'lobby' briefings with politicians and on the mailing lists of important relevant bodies.
- 'Lobby' politics - influential groups 'lobby' the government in such meetings to get their views across and attempt to influence policy.

Foreign news sources
- Journalists, editors and correspondents based permanently abroad for news networks e.g. Gavin Hewitt Europe Editor or Mark Mardell North American Editor.
- Sometimes pooled foreign news 'bureau' with other broadcasters.
- Again valued for their local contacts and on the ground knowledge and access.
- Often long hours of travelling, living in dangerous places and special training often needed.
- International news agencies and large scale news organisations such as ABC, NBC and Sky with whom the likes of the BBC have deals.
- Eurovision New Exchange - facilitates the exchange of stories between Eurovision countries.

- Many broadcasters have their own archived material which is a rich source of pictures, as well as independent archives which sell on their material under license.

BEWARE - fake news
- They look like news packages and sound like them, but stories are to be approached with caution, as they are very often propaganda. 
- Think about how many 'stories' now pop up via social media - who is sending them & why?
- Blurring the lines between MARKETING and NEWS
- How do you verify and check these stories?

U.G.C (User Generated Content)
- Great, as journalists can't be everywhere but...
- Paris attacks 2015
- Russia meteorite 2013
- Are we encouraging people to film first in an attack? - not right
- A photographer photographing a small child in poverty - doesn't feel right

- Whichever your source of information and stories, you will need to be a consummate communicator order to access these.
- As with the documentary unit, know the essentials before you make a call - do the research and know what questions you want to ask.
- Get used to using the telephone.
- Emails are good, but nothing beats a chat with someone.
- Build a rapport, gauge the person you are talking to and make a decision about them and the story.

Be tenacious and have stamina, get them 'on side'
- Sometimes you have to be prepared to be creative in order to get what you need
- Providing you are being ethical, find ways of negotiating obstacles to gain the access you need
- Often you need to have stamina and be prepared to push at a story and find a new way of telling your story in order to make it work
- When people are reluctant to take part, sometimes with good reason, it is useful to explain that this is their chance to put their side of the story
- Some of the best journalists don't give up they always find a way!

Being creative with your methods...
- The art of tracking people down is one you need to master - do your research to identify key contacts and build from there-
- just like a private investigator you will spend a lot of time simply trying to find people.
- Sometimes you need to think outside the obvious in order to get what you need.
- Finding people who will talk might mean looking for someone outside the direct arena of your story, look instead for those with a credible association with it.

Finding your 'angle'
- The news 'angle' is key to developing the story.
- The angle can be defined as the main significance of the story to your particular audience. It is a particular viewpoint of any story.
- There will inevitably be several angles on any story, your job is to decide the angle which best suits and sells your story and will engage your audience.

Engaging --> topic --> cast --> angle

What makes a story 'newsworthy'?
- Relevance / resonance / timing
- Controversy
- PEG (dates, an event, e.g. we might peg a story about the use of fur around fashion week or Princess Diana at this time)
- Who, why, what, where & how?
- Choosing the 'lead' story is key in determining the 'most newsworthy' story of that particular bulletin.
- The lead story might vary at different times of the day e.g. what is most engaging for the audience at different times.
- Recent leads now:
North Korea firing missiles over to Japan
McCann's taking lie detector

- Subjective! But someone has to do it - setting the agenda...
e.g. Deciding what important and therefore what isn't and putting it in order for the programme
- Typically you will see 15-20 news stories per 30' news programme
- Therefore out of a potential list of possibly limitless stories nationally and globally, deciding what that range of stories are.
- Part of the task is balancing the tone of the range of stories offered - from hard news, breaking stories to softer 'human interest' pieces.
- Journalistic instinct plays a strong part in this decision.
- Key ares which determine this decision are:
Broadcaster's 'values'

Developing your story
- Copious research needs to be matched with copious (detailed and accurate) note-taking.
- Be organised and keep in touch with contacts.

Who said that?
- Whenever you are delivering information, ensure you attribute the information to reliable sources - simply saying 'allegedly/apparently' is not enough without saying where the information is from.

Setting up your story
- The proof of your journalistic skills is when you try to set your story up to shoot it
- Make sure you're being reliable when you're reporting
- By the time you set it up you should be clear about:
WHAT your story is (and is not)
WHO is in your story (and is not)
WHERE is it (location/s)
WHEN is it to be shot (schedule)
HOW you will tell it (treatment/style/angle)
WHY you are making the story?

Following up leads
- The contacts you make in the early stages of research should lead you to the final elements which you will include in your news story.
- What is the story - if you can write a headline in 10 words you have a good story.
- Inevitable there will be decisions made on the basis of availability, location, cost etc, but bear in mind these decisions frame your story for the audience -
  be sure you are including elements which are a fair and reasonable representation of the facts
  stay objective

Don't burn the bridges...
- You never know when you might need them again.
- PUBLIC INTEREST - doing something in the public interest for something that needs to be told.
- Treat people with respect, be-
open and fair
honest and direct
aware of the intrusion you are making - respect their time
- Treat other people how you would expect to be treated
- Very simple tip - thank contributors and let them know when/where the piece they feature in will be aired/published.

Television news story forms
5 basic types
- readers (to 'tell' stories)
- OOVs / VO (out of vision/voice-overs)
- VO / SOT (voice-overs/sound on tape)
- reporter package

- A short story which the presenter reads out with no video to accompany it or any full screen graphics - to 'tell' the story

OOVs (aka VOs)
- Stories which the presenter reads which also includes video material
- Often short - 20-30"
- If the presenter is reading over graphics it might be annotated as VO/g.
- OOVs add variety of pace to the newscast
- They are useful when covering an event and is not necessary to hear from someone at the event (wouldn't add anything to the story)
- e.g. covering a minor event such as a local street fair
- A late breaking story - no time to do anything with it
- May also depend on whether there are many other more 'important' full packages already in the bulletin

How to make an OOV
- Source your story and relevant information
- Expand and script information to produce a crafted story
- Boil down to the essential of the story and find your angle
- Can use archive or stock shots
- Graphics are useful - statistics and other data
- Add sound - to avoid a flat report

- Combination of the OOV & SOT
- SOT made up of interview clips
- Good for varying pace of the programme and allows a more in-depth news report, but not as in depth as a full news package
- Useful when covering an event and need someone there to comment (someone directly affected rather than a spokesperson)

News package
- Fully formed self contained news pieces
- Presenter is not involved in the storytelling itself but introducing and wrapping up the story
- A variety of elements available in a news package:
PTCs (pieces to camera)
Sequences & actuality
Set ups - set up sequence for interviewees e.g. making a cup of tea
- Work out story before shooting
- This can be done on paper
- 3 words per second for scripts

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

DIGITAL NEWS: Initial Ideas

After our briefing session, Katie, Alex, Jason and myself starting brainstorming ideas to start us off with the news project. We started by thinking of the branding and said we wanted our audience to be around our age (19-25) and we wanted it to be a funny news article as we've created a lot of serious bits in the previous projects we wanted to do something slightly more light-hearted. 

Potential subjects:
- TV/film/Netflix
- Politics (Brexit)
- Health
- Charity
- Students
- Drinking/alcohol

Potential stories:

- Dreamland
- Myths and disproving them
- Stoptober/stay sober/movember
- Is Netflix taking over? Do people watch regular TV anymore?

We had a talk with Helen, giving her all these ideas to see what she thought of them. With Helen, we agreed on combining e-cigarettes, alcohol and myths/misconceptions. These are all things which can be directed towards young adults which will suit our audience choice (19-25). We all brainstormed these ideas and created little stories that could go with them e.g. we could do something about hangover cures to go with the alcohol section and we could do a e-cigarettes Vs cigarettes - what one is healthier. 

Myths - social misconceptions/de-bunking

- E-cigarettes/vaping healthier than cigarettes (Jason)
- Alcohol: social/health - hangover cures - like old wives tales? (Alex)
- Myth-busting - definitions - what does it mean? - a view or opinion that is incorrect because it's based on faulty thinking or misunderstanding (Katie)
- Absurd - sneezing with your eyes open etc. (Melissa)

Red Lion news report

After our talk with Helen about what idea routes to go down we each picked bits which we would research individually. I started looking at ridiculous urban myths below:

‘An urban myth is a strange or surprising story which many people believe but which is not actually true.’

Examples of urban myths
- Bloody Mary
- ‘The spider bite'
- The licked hand
- Chain letters
- The slender man

Debunked common myths & misconceptions
- “Bulls hate the colour red” - Bulls are actually colour blind, they actually react to the motion of the bullfighters’ cloth as a perceived threat.
- “Napoleon was short” - Napoleon was 5’7”, actually above the average height for a Frenchman of his time.
- “Don’t wake sleepwalkers” - They’ll be really confused but it’s fine to do so. It’s probably more dangerous letting them sleepwalk.  
- “Missing persons report” - Police don’t demand a 24-hour period before accepting a missing person's report.
- “Don’t go swimming on a full stomach” - Eating before swimming doesn’t increase risk of cramps, alcohol is the biggest risk increaser. A full stomach will just make you out of breath. 
- “Goldfish have a 3 second memory” - Goldfish are not the smartest but they have a memory span of 3 months.

Katie did the research about myth-busting:

Unknowingly, Katie and myself ended up both looking at one of the same websites so our information is similar.

Jason did the research about e-cigarettes:

& Alex looked into the effects of alcohol and Macmillan's 'Go Sober For October' campaign:

After each researching different parts we all decided to definitely go down this route as we already have ideas on who to contact e.g. Macmillan should definitely be up for talking to us, seeing as they endorsed Stoptober, we think this time would be best to talk to them about it (september/october time). E-cigarettes are most popular now more than ever before and will just get more popular throughout the years so it would be interesting to talk to someone about that too. The whole idea of myth busting is very interesting so I am looking forward to seeing what story we can come up with for that one. Even if we combine them so we look at myths surrounding e-cigarettes and hangover cures?

MAJOR PROJECT: Project Evaluation

Production My aim for this major project unit was to further develop the aspects of production which I had written about in the p...