Keep the Stories Coming..

Stories, stories, and more stories

After Producing my second week, I definitely went about getting my stories and format differently than before. Yet, the hardest part is definitely finding the stories to begin with. There are a lot of things going on around the world. For example, everything that is happening with Isis in the middle-east. Those are very big stories, especially for journalists regarding the awful beheadings of two journalists already. But these are stories that don’t relate to our community and that some people, frankly, just don’t care about!

Producer day

First story

When it comes to stories, I personally like to cover the most known stories around the country. So when I came across the new IPhone 6 release, it was very easy to choose that story. I originally wanted it to be a package because everyone cares about the new IPhone and it relates to most people. Yet, after going to the mall and shooting the b-roll it became clear that we weren’t supposed to be there. Security came up to me and Ryan who was helping me, and told us that we needed permission to shoot anything in the mall. My interviewee overheard and quickly said something on camera so that I had someone to interview. So if by chance, if that interviewee ever reads this, thank you so much. I wouldn’t have gotten the credit for it if you weren’t quick on your toes! A life-saver you are! So the original package turned into a Vo-Sot with one interview. Lesson learned here: plan ahead, and check if you can shoot in that specific area.

covering real news

My second story came the next news day. I had nothing and couldn’t think of another story that sparked my interest whatsoever. Jill then told me and Mariah about the makeshift memorial that was burned down in Ferguson for Michael Brown and I immediately wanted to cover that story. Mariah came and helped out and we went to the actual street where Michael Brown was shot and his memorial was there fully rebuilt with people standing around and talking or taking pictures. When we got there, it hit me that this story is something very important to the community around the area and we are their voice. I was in a situation that real news reporters encounter on a daily basis and it was scary but very exciting at the same time. Ferguson has been in the news for countless reasons. The sensationalism around the entire situation seems a little overwhelming at times but for someone looking to get into journalism and reporting; it’s crazy that something so big is happening just around the corner from us here at Lindenwood. After getting all of the b-roll needed, someone came up to us and volunteered for an interview which made it about ten times easier than having to ask someone for an interview. The lady we interviewed was very emotional about the whole thing and wanted to have her voice heard. I listened to what she had to say rather than just paying attention to the camera or what I was thinking about. It is probably one of the coolest things I’ve done for LUTV and it will probably always be one of the best things I’ll by chance encounter for a while. To wrap around the story we did a live in the newsroom shot and it worked pretty well and ran pretty smoothly. We did have a few hiccups because the teleprompter in the studio isn’t able to hear what I’m saying. So in that situation it was up to me to memorize the first couple of lines in my story and then go off my scripts from there.

ferguson interview

All in all, I became a real news reporter that day without even expecting it. This lady was able to say something on camera that I wasn’t able to say myself. She made me realize covering these stories give me the power to inform people of important information. It is up to me to deliver that information the correct way and fast so that people are informed about something that might matter to them.

Here’s my package from last weeks newscast as the producer about the Virus in the Midwest.


And…. Cue!

Super Semester- Week 1

It definitely lives up to it’s name; Super Semester. Starting out, everyone hit the ground running. Producers were under stress, content team scattered around Saint Charles, and talent furiously writing stories so they could go over their own scripts before everything goes live at 3 pm. Yet, throughout the craziness, there was a sense of purpose and importance that I bet couldn’t be duplicated anywhere else besides the newsroom.

Who are you?

Starting Monday, I had the come across a great story as a package involving a respiratory virus hitting children throughout the Midwest. The very first person I called, I quickly realized my title; News Reporter for LUTV. Now that sounds pretty official. After introducing my new title, the first source at the local Health Department was very helpful and willing to collaborate with me, even if it was just for our college TV station. Then everything else went downhill from there. The rest of the day I was calling different doctors, other sources to try and get another on camera interview for such a cool and exciting story. Doctors were reluctant to talk about any cases since they can’t give out any information about specific patients. That or people simply didn’t want to be interviewed on camera. After an entire day gone, it was time to take a new perspective. The idea suddenly came that the source didn’t have to be a doctor but a worried parent that wants to help prevent tragedies around the Saint Charles area. After calling the first person, they were willing to help and had actually heard about the mystery illness frightening parents all over.

Getting the right shots

My second item for content was creating a VO-SOT showcasing the Sorority Rush week happening at Lindenwood throughout the entire week. I didn’t set up an interview before hand but as soon as I got there, they were very willing to be on camera and help promote their Greek life at school. Everything ran very smoothly at the shoot as the problems began to show up in the edit room. I realized I didn’t grab enough B-roll as well as getting the interviewee in action. That way as I edited and wrote the script, it was very hard to be creative and keep the story relevant to what I was saying. This is only something you can learn by making the mistake once. After editing everything, the story was ready before lunch even started, which is pretty early as most producers may know. When the story ran, there were some technical difficulties that had the wrong reader on camera, which in turn caused the camera to pan over to the actual reader. On top of that, the video that made it a VO didn’t run which then made it a simple reader story. After re-shooting, they were able to fix that and do everything as it was supposed to air the first time.

Lessons learned

There were a couple things I wish I could’ve done differently if I had the chance to do it again for the first time. First the stories I had came to me too late in the game. Over the weekend I couldn’t find much that sparked my interest, and even doing the VO-Sot on the sorority rush week was something that wasn’t something I was interested in doing. Yet, as the package on the virus came into view, I needed to get it all together before Wednesday’s newscast at 3 pm sharp. Since I submitted the Sorority story first, that is what the Producer wanted rather than the virus that could be aired the following week as it would still be relevant. What this means for me is no wrap around. I am the assistant producer on Monday and then the Producer on Wednesday as well. Because of that, I can’t wrap around any content that I make for that week. It changes the layout of the story a little bit, but that isn’t much of a problem. So all in all, it made me realize I need to stay on top of story ideas much earlier and be prepared to assume I am behind at all times.

So far, I am very excited to try everything and really exceed my own expectations in every section of super semester. I even got to be talent for the football’s half time show during our first home season opener! So if things keep going the way they are now, making mistakes will be the least of my worries.

LPS Halftime Show with Kenny Newhouse
LPS Halftime Show with Kenny Newhouse

Industry Issues with Facebook

What Articles?

Two articles that I found which had to do with modern day media issues were both stories featured on The Next Web and both related to Facebook and some of their policies including other sub-companies they own. The first article called, Facebook changes the only unique Slingshot feature: You can now send unlocked photos and videos, talks about a sub-company Facebook owns that is trying to compete with the ever-popular app called Snapchat. The second article called, Facebook releases its Privacy Checkup tool for helping users review who they’re sharing with, covers the updated points on Facebook’s privacy policy and how they have helped make it easier for Facebook users to know who sees their profile.

Slingshot- or as Facebook sees it, the new Snapchat

The first original feature of Slingshot that set it apart from any other app was the fact that users had to respond with a picture or video to see what another user had sent to them. Facebook now decided to change this feature and make it optional for the users to send back a picture or video in response, making it possible to see the content even if the user doesn’t respond with something in return. Which, quite frankly makes sense to me why Facebook changed the feature. The feature made the entire app confusing from the beginning. It just doesn’t make sense as to why any user would respond before actually knowing what the content of their ‘friends’ was about in the first place. This change essentially makes it like the competing app Snapchat excluding one feature; which is the fact users can send pictures or videos to one person or to a group/mass of people. As for the amount of seconds the content is shown wasn’t said in the informational video. Yet, all of these changes are important to journalist because these small changes are what make or break certain apps, which in turn decide their success in the future. Apps like Twitter and even Instagram are used in news stories and featured for more information daily. Apps aren’t just something that teenagers use to pass time, they are utensils that journalists can use and reference for stories and use to keep up with what’s going on in the world. Essentially, knowing which apps are being used most and which apps may be on the rise, helps keep journalists in on the loop without putting forth too  much effort.

Do you know your privacy settings?

The new tool that allows for users to go over their privacy policy and make sure everything is in order creates a way for people who don’t know how to handle their page, easier. The tool is supposedly supposed to pop up on every users home page that takes them step by step through the process over making everything is to the users liking. Journalists should pay attention to these changes because most people don’t even know what the privacy policy setting is set to on their Facebook page. News that involves privacy settings anywhere on the internet is something that most people like to hear about, but never really pay attention in the end.

Here’s the video that explains the whole process of checking the Privacy Policy settings for every user. If the user wishes to change and look over their settings later, they can find it under the Privacy shortcut option on the Facebook’s menu bar.