And Now The News from Bakersfield

20th March

While local TV stations agonize over whether to train and field a few VJs, Davina McHenry, a print reporter with The Bakersfield Californian, writes that the local newspaper!! has already trained and equipped 20 of their print journalists and 5 of their photogs with video cameras to shoot video stories for the website.   She writes that they also have a full-time videographer and multimedia producer (job vacant) who also shoots and edits.

That means that the local paper (!!) is putting 26 cameras on the streets of Bakersfield every day – far more (I am sure) than the local TV stations currently do!! Local news stations, please take note.  As all media move to the web, the local paper is your direct video competitor – and doing a much better job.

40 Degrees North

19th March

We took Ronnie Miller, Syracuse radio personality and former cast member of 5takes Europe, gave him a GPS device and a small HDV camera and sent him off to travel around the world. The only condition – he could not deviate from the 40th Parallel… not even by an inch. If he comes to someone’s living room – he has to go through it. If he comes to a military base, he has to cross it. “What if I come to a wall?” Ronnie asked. ‘Chain Saw’.

The first Episode airs tomorrow night on The Travel Channel – Check it out. Boost our ratings. Here’s the link:

VJ Stations in Holland

19th March

We are in Utrecht, Netherlands, this week, working with RTV, the Dutch state broadcaster – a kind of Dutch BBC.  We have been working with RTV for the past 3 years, and visits to the Netherlands are a regular stop on our agenda.  This week, in Utrecht, we are reaching a kind of conclusion here.

Senior VJ Instructor Tim French conducts the RTV/Utrecht bootcamp

We will be running a 2-week, on-site bootcamp where another 20 VJs and managers are being trained.  This will give the Utrecht station 40+ cameras in play every day 40+ edits and a management team fully trained to deal with the VJ-driven revolution.

Between last week’s Sweden series and this week in the Netherlands, I am again astonished at how much more progressive Europeans are in adapting and incorporating new technologies into their ways of working; and how … Read More »

VJs in Sweden

17th March

We have just spent the past two days meeting with VJs from all across Sweden. But first, some background.

In 1999, I got a phone call from a Swedish journalist named Leif Hedman. He was a TV reporter for SVT, the Swedish state broadcaster, and he asked me if I would be interested in doing a weekend seminar in Stockholm to introduce Swedish journalists to the VJ concept. Hedman had been doing it on his own for years.

lisa lambden meets with Swedish VJs, March 15, 2007

I never miss an opportunity to fly to Stockholm all expenses paid for a weekend, so I said, ‘sure’.

Live From Sweden

15th March

I am blogging live from the SVT (Swedish State Broadcasting) videojournalist conference in Vilhelmina, Sweden. I will have a complete report on this by the end of the day. It’s a 2-day conference with VJs from all over Sweden. Unlike in the US, there is no resistance to the idea of VJ driven newsrooms. Scandinavia is so much faster to embrace new technologies than the US, it is astounding.
I’m filing on my blackberry…which does not do photos..or video.. But I will upload later…

TV Sucks – Part IV

14th March

Oatmeal at 11

If you work in a newsroom as a reporter, you know that the most exciting moment is when you come back from a big story, enter the newsroom and turn to your colleagues and say ” you won’t believe what I just saw”.

Newsrooms are exiting.

The news business is exciting.

That is why we go into it.

So why can’t we capture that excitement when we produce the Evening News?

We The People….

13th March

The average American watches 4.2 hours of TV a day.

That makes television the number one American passtime, far surpassing sports, work, reading, school… in fact, just about everything but sleep.

Americans spend more time watching television than anything else.

For the past fifty years in fact, we have all been participating in a kind of massive sociological experiment: What happens when a society spends 4.2 hours a day, every day, staring at a glowing screen.

What does it do to us?

Comrade Couric – The People’s Choice

11th March

Is TV News the last vestige of the Soviet Union?

Think about it.

In the Soviet Union there was no choice.

One brand of toothpaste.

One kind of car.

One kind of phone.

Take it or leave it.

When you look at the evening news on TV, its pretty much the same. Here are the stories we selected for you. No Choice. Take it or leave it.

One Degree-itis

10th March


My mentor in this business was Fred Friendly.

He was Edward R. Murrow’s producer, the former President of CBS News, and a moose of a man. He resigned from his postion as President of CBS News (when that really) meant something… over a matter of principle. He wanted to run the Senate hearings on the Vietnam war, the first of them, live. Bill Paley wanted to run a rerun of I Love Lucy. Friendly felt so strongly that he said he would rather resign than compromise his journalistic integrity.

Those were the days.

A Trip Into Hell

9th March

Yesterday, I descended into the jaws of Hell… or at least it looked that way.

I went down a long series of rickety, narrow metal stairs to a massive construction site under what used to be The World Trade Center, (or at least part of it). I was accompanying a print journalist from one of our client’s magazines. She was doing an article on a monster building project going on right under our noses – or at least right under the streets of lower Manhattan.

Michael's Blog

Every day Michael Rosenblum blogs about the latest developments in the world of video and the media as well as future trends in technology and equipment.

Michael's Other Blogs
The Guardian
The Huffington Post

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