The journalism world was astonished that Amazon founder and billionaire Jeff Bezos had purchased The Washington Post.
Astonished… and worried.
Now, the question loomed: What would Bezos do with the paper?”
Roy Greenslade, writing in The Guardian, thought that there were vast opportunities in ‘the digital world’ to merge the marketing power of Amazon to the failing newspaper’s fortunes.
Others suggestions ran the spectrum from the cynical view that Bezos might be simply buying influence in DC to those who thought this was almost a non-profit act of nobless oblige – social do-gooding.
All of them might be right.
However, allow me to suggest an alternative.
(Jeff Bezos, are y0u listening?)
I think that Bezos now has a unique opportunity to rescue not just a DC newspaper, but, remarkably, television journalism – which has a much deeper and wider viewer base than The Washington Post ever did.
Television news, … Read More »
Until last month most Americans had never heard to The Guardian.
Today, after the Snowden Affair, pretty much everyone in America, and indeed the world, now knows that The Guardian is one of the world’s best newsapers,(if not the very best).
We know because:
a) we spend a lot of time the UK
b) we have had a partnership with The Guardian for nearly 5 years.
And if you want to become a working video journalist, what better place to learn than with The Guardian and in London?
(Particularly as it is 85 degress (fahrenheit) here – more like LA actually… (global warming has a few admittedly short-term benefits!))
Today is the first day of our 4-day bootcamp.
We’ve got a wide range of students, from a London based artist to a freelancer with Sky to writers from Lonely Planet to a former on-air journalist from Paris, and many others.
should … Read More »
Wanted….. As it turns out, (thanks to The Guardian), the NSA and the US Government have been mining our online data and phone calls to ‘protect’ us from whatever they decide at the moment is a threat. It also turns out that, about half of Americans surveyed think it is a fair trade off – privacy for national security. The other half don’t agree. It’s a tough question, and an even tougher concept – pre-emptively locating and arresting terrorist before they can carry out the deeds that they are planning. I have seen this movie before: Minority Report with Tom Cruise. It’s based on a Philip K. Dick novel of the same name. The protagonist, John Anderton (Cruise), is a Captain in the Pre-Crime division. It doesn’t countenance using the web as the vehicle to find out who … Read More »
Maureen Dowd in The New York Times reported today that Hillary Clinton has started tweeting. If anything screams twitter is no longer hip, this is it. Time to move on and search for the ‘next big thing’. In New York, a new restaurant or club can be hip and trendy and attract all the ‘right people’, but only for so long. Eventually, the word gets out and the place starts to get populated by what we call the B&T crowd – that is, bridge and tunnel – that is, people from New Jersey and Long Island. When that happens, it is time to move on. Now Hillary, the B&T Crowd for online media has arrived. Likewise, time to move on. Her ‘first tweet’ was over produced, over agonized over (if that is a word) and edited and redacted and probably … Read More »
VJ Bootcamp in Nairobi with the UN
Take the next step.
Learn to be a professional video journalist this summer in London, England.
Our partnership with The Guardian, one of the most highly repected newspapers in the world is starting to fill up, but we have a few places still open.
Four four days you will learn to shoot, edit, report, script, upload and share you video journalism work, as well as getting valuable insights and contacts to move forward with your video career.
We like to say that we compress the first year of NYU Film School into four days, but frankly, I think we do much more.
Our video bootcamps are now, remarkably, in their 25th year of operation and still going strong.
We have trained more than 40,000 people worldwide to work in this way, from The BBC to the United Nations to The New … Read More »
Coming soon to a theater new year… and a museum, apparently…
In 1985, Neil Postman wrote what would become the epitaph for our age: Amusing Ourselves to Death.
In it he postulated that as television and video became more and more ubiquitous, everything, including news and information, would have to become ‘entertaining’, simply to hold our attention.
How right he was.
This morning, The Newseum, an ‘interactive museum of news and journalism’ launched a new exhibit: The Anchorman.
Unlike what you might think, the exhibit is not dedicated to the likes of Walter Cronkite or Peter Jennings or Edward R. Murrow. The exhibit, apparently funded by Paramount Films (who are releasing the sequel just in time for the opening), will feature the Adventures of Ron Burgundy, the fictional star of the the film by the same name. (And many thanks to my friend Jack Hitt … Read More »
Last week, Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann announced that she would not be running for another term in Congress.
This is fine (really), but instead of holding a press conference, she released a video explaining her rationalization for the move.
The video (I think far too long) was however, very slick and well produced. Very professional.
She then posted it on the Internet.
In doing so, Bachmann was able to bypass the traditional press; no newspapers, no talk shows, no TV news, no journalists.
And… she got her message across, and lots of coverage.
But the message was very carefully controlled.
There used to be a time when politicians (and others) had no choice but to go to ‘the press’. But increasingy, they are starting to realize that they don’t need the press. In fact, it is the press that needs them. But now they are in control.
At the … Read More »
Yesterday, the Chicago Sun-Times announced that they were firing their entire photography staff.
Today, they announced that they would start training their reporters to take their own photos using an iPhone.
Media writer Robert Feder surfaced this on Facebook and a lot of discussion ensued.
I am sure I will catch a lot of flack over this (could it be worse than the librarians?), but this is both tragic and inevitable.
Tragic because the professional photographers are both talented and dedicated.
Inevitable because this is where the technology is taking us.
Many years ago (forgive me if I repeat myself here), my very good friend PF Bentley was the White House photographer for Time Magazine.
This is the top of the craft and he deserved it. Books. Magazines. And great stuff.
Once, a few years ago (more than a few now), he invited me to come along on … Read More »
We recently went to the Bill Brandt show at the Museum of Modern Art.
Brandt is a very famous photographer, but in all honesty, when I saw most of his work my reaction was ‘what’s the big deal?’
I don’t want to come off as an intellectual troglodyte, and I have a long running love-affair with photography. I even own a few Salgados. But the Brandt photos were… feh.
OK. But what’s the big deal?
The NY Times review of the show was written with typical ‘art criticism’ praise:
A Camera Ravenous for Emotional Depth
I understand, at least intellectually, the historical import of Brandt, placed in the context of photography per se. But again, the images, for the most part, feh.
Why the feh?
A piece in The Guardian today helped me put it in perspective.
Facebook users alone are posting more than 300 million photographs a day.
Add … Read More »