Where’s the mutlimedia story?

Syracuse professor, MSNBC coordinator

Moments by Will Hoffman. Watch it. Brilliant.

–It’s all about moments, right, it’s not real, it’s fiction. But it’s things photographers like to do. All the moments are in the center, your eye never leaves the center of the screen.

So when should you use still photographs in video pieces? It’s so difficult to integrate.

MSNBC woman: she likes the integration, though the others don’t. It depends on the shooter, but she likes it. Still photographers are used to jumping around, but videographers need to let moments plan out. There also needs to be ambient audio.

For example, there was a living portraits story, they incorporated both. In a news story, you needed background of an event, that would separate if you use photos from the past.

Multiple browser windows open at the same time: are people straying away from the page?

HTML5: Wilderness/Downtown by the Arcade Fire. Do it. Go. Go.

Chrissy Rae: MSNBC woman: she was only there for a day and a half to interview the woman she did a profile on. The woman was in a wheelchair, and she had many, many shots of different aspects of this woman’s life. “It’s being a good journalist.”

The natural thing to do is write a story and take a picture. When do you decide that it could be more? That it could be a video or online?

How many people have been injured in relation to your story, and create a searchable database.

Make graphics that go along with the story. Record nat sound. After working in newspapers, people don’t necessarily think like this.

Election: there will be interactives out the wazoo. For a smaller project, they don’t throw all the resources at it. There’s just not enough turnaround unless it’s done well ahead of time. But the videos make money.

You can take new routes to boring stories: a gun shop, the people describing the customers and the customers actually doing funny things. The audio can contribute, the moments make the story. Is there repetitive action? Somebody to interview? Good audio? Central character? Not everything is worth a video.

Juxtaposition that can come across in video may not be able to come across as well in stills and words—those are less personal than video. Also, how comfortable are the people in the videos? You want someone who’s going to be active in video. The spirit of the people needs to come across. Videos need to have moments.

Responsibilities in each video? You always do it all yourself. You are the soundman, director, photographer, reporter, interviewer, editor. It’s a great experience because you know what you’ve got, you know what you need and you know how to develop it. At MSNBC.com, they have an editor, but he mostly just sweetens what they already do.

MSNBC uses Avid, not Final Cut, though a lot of freelancers use Final Cut. There is no industry standard. Microsoft people use .AVI, Mac people use .MOV.

Visuals need to tell the story, not the words.

There’s a beginning, middle and end.

People can do both multimedia and reporting, you just have to focus on what’s better for each medium. With multimedia, they’re more concerned with a character-driven narrative. In print, there should be color, but it tends to take away from the straightforward narrative.

Ads: convince them to get the right player, to get an ad team that works on video, banner ads are good, but the real money is in video. People will buy that.

–jack

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