Tag Archives: Multimedia

Os Media em 2011: Previsões

O meu caro amigo Mr.Steed desafiou-me para fazermos um post conjunto com as previsões para os media em 2011. Consultámos algumas pessoas cuja opinião nos pareceu ser pertinente, tanto da nossa praça como além fronteiras, sobre o que poderão ser as tendências para o negócio dos media num futuro próximo.

É claro que há riscos neste tipo de coisas. Existe uma frase feita que diz que a mudança está a ocorrer mais depressa do que a nossa adaptação a ela. E quando falo de nós, refiro-me quer a utilizadores, quer a produtores de conteúdos. Atravessamos a maior revolução desde a Revolução Industrial, que assenta não só em avanços tecnológicos mas também em novas relações entre os media e os seus públicos, entre instituições e cidadãos comuns, entre os próprios utilizadores.

Se tiverem dúvidas pensem nisto: o Youtube tem 5 anos; o Google tem 10; o Facebook tem quase 600 milhões de utilizadores, e quantos de vocês estão lá há mais de 2 anos? E que consequências traz algo como o Wikileaks? E quantas vezes a Internet e as redes sociais são referidas nos noticiários, nos jornais, e quantas vezes as primeiras informações surgem através de cidadãos anónimos (cada vez mais um paradoxo), com vídeos filmados com telemóveis, fotografias imediatamente colocadas na rede, ou tweets durante os acontecimentos?

A esta nova lógica juntam-se dispositivos completamente novos, que exigem uma linguagem e formas de comunicação também completamente novas. A primeira década do século XXI vai ficar na história como a década da Revolução Digital. Por isso, qualquer exercício de adivinhação é uma tarefa complicada.

Neste post vou só destacar algumas das ideias propostas pelos nossos convidados, mas poderão ler tudo na íntegra no blog do Mr.Steed, onde ele faz as suas próprias previsões para o ano que se avizinha.

Uma coisa é certa: são tempos incríveis para se ser jornalista, e poucas gerações se podem gabar de poder ter vivido algo que tenha afectado a maneira de nos relacionarmos com o mundo de forma tão profunda, como ao que estamos a assistir todos os dias.

Algumas redações vão descobrir em 2011 que: 1) existe uma coisa chamada World Wide Web; 2) os computadores servem para mais do que bater texto, editar imagem, ver p0rn/receitas e receber spam; 3) o Internet Explorer dá para fazer mais coisas do que ler blogs e os sites da concorrência. Do número de descobertas dependerá a velocidade da migração dos jornais para as plataformas a que continuamos a chamar novas como se a última década tivesse demorado três meses.

Paulo Querido

I said that things would get ugly in 2010 and have been sadly proved right. I think they’ll get even uglier in 2011 as the reaction against the shift in power grows and the fallout from Wikileaks continues. Expect a lot of rushed-through legislation against the invisible threats of the web which has implications for journalists and publishers.

Paul Bradshaw

Novos títulos irão surgir mas com enfoque em nichos. Títulos especializados. Direccionados a comunidades.

Rodrigo Saraiva

Muitos média com conteúdos medíocres não resistirão a fazer-se pagar por eles, como se fosse possível enganar os utilizadores. Perderão em influência e em publicidade.

António Granado

The new year will also see a refinement of multimedia strategies. So far many multimedia projects have been experimental in some ways, but we can now look back and see what works and what doesn’t and better serve our readers and viewers.

Mark S.Luckie

Jornalistas da comunicação escrita, com maior espírito de sobrevivência, intensificarão a sua aprendizagem nas áreas das técnicas audiovisuais.

Alexandre Pais

Os jornalistas estão a descobrir avidamente o Twitter e o Facebook, são cada vez mais bloggers e produtores de conteúdos nas redes sociais,  e começam até a ser gestores das suas comunidades on-line. Também haverá cada vez mais free-lancers. Provavelmente o Sindicato de Jornalistas não conseguirá acompanhar esta nova realidade. Parece-me pois provável que um dia destes surja uma associação profissional que congregue os novos interesses e desafios da profissão.

Alda Telles

As empresas de media portuguesas ainda não têm um modelo de negócio para estes novos tempos.

Manuel Falcão

E que previsões têm vocês para o ano que se avizinha? O que é que esperam dos media em 2011?

Help me out with my #ParanoiaTimeline

My last assignment for the Online Journalism  module for this term is going to be a timeline. Well, it’s more than a timeline, because I want to create an interactive graph, that resembles a timeline, with videos, graphs, interviews, the works. But i want to do it in less than two weeks. Are you willing to help me?

The idea is to show the biggest social paranoia events, at a global scale, that happened between the end of the longest paranoia period of the 20th century – the Cold War – in 1990, and the next catastrophic “event” set for 2012 (believe me, some people are terrified over that). I have a list for Pandemics, like SARS, Mad Cow syndrome, swine flu, bird flu; Environmental, like the ozone layer and global warming; Technology includes items like Y2K; and Terrorism, a real situation that keeps our society on borderline paranoia.

As you might have noticed, most of these events were huge on the news, they affected our lives in some way, but most of them never amounted to nothing, or to not as much as the media predicted. I need your help to give depth, and sort the time windows for each one of these events, and if you can interview someone who can talk about this, or tell me about good experts in any of these fields, share information or previous works you made before about any of these subjects, I’d be most grateful, and you’ll all be credited in the assignment. Anyway, if the timeline is not finished by the established deadline, I’ll be working on it for a few more weeks. I’m building a website around this and I really want you to contribute, this is also a crowdsourcing experience.

How can you participate? For now i’m using a Public Google Wave, anyone can join in, but i have a wiki, if you want to use it instead of the Wave just send me a message. I’m thinking about opening a Facebook group, but I’m still thinking about it. I’m open to suggestions. If you know any similar projects just leave the links below in the comment box. Thank you.

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Breadth Portfolio: Part 1 – Maps and Forms

In this series of posts I’ll share part of the report I wrote for the MA Online Journalism’s Multimedia Journalism module, in which I describe some experiments I developed in the last months. I’d appreciate some feedback and ideas on this.

Maps and Forms

One of the most interesting phenomena in online journalism is how media can easily be left out of the process of delivering the news: they are no longer the source of information to a wider audience, but most times sit on the sidelines trying to grasp what is going on before their eyes. As we have learned with breaking news stories, it has been the crowd, the common users, that have revealed events to the world faster, more accurately and in a more diverse fashion than “regular” media is able to.  We saw that happen with the Hudson River airplane near-crash, lots of earthquakes from China to Haiti, with the demonstrations in Iran. All were relevant for different reasons, but their dissemination to a wider audience has a few points in common: social networks, and the absence of media, at least in the very first instants.

I’ve been defending for a while that journalists are no longer mediators between fact and public, but news DJs that remix the information available, building on preexistent content, generated by users, authorities, and other media.  Yet, media seem to fail to gather and organize this torrent of information.

When on the 20th of February a storm hit Madeira Island, causing mudslides and floods, the silence on most news websites, radios and TV stations was deafening. But on Twitter there were accounts from local people about what was going on, and, above all, they had videos. The event was being tagged as #tempmad, so it was easy to follow all the developments, but the information seemed to be too scattered to get a real picture of what was going on in the island, and since there was no one organizing the information available, I decided to create a map on Google[ii], to place videos, pictures and other relevant information.

Starting off with links to YouTube videos published by witnesses on location, and asking for more content, I quickly put the map together and made it available to everyone and although it hadn’t many items, it started to get hits at an impressive rate. Since it was Saturday, and most newsrooms were empty, it was the only visual representation online of the events in the first hours, and it was used by some Portuguese media[iii] in their coverage of the event (more specifically, two national newspapers and public television). It got 10.000 views in the first hours and reached 30.000 in just two days. One month later, it has the impressive number of 77 thousand visits.

Madeira Map

But that was relatively easy, since all I had to do was to place and embed the video and photographic content available into the map. When I started collaborating on the second day with an impromptu team that was aggregating data about the floods in a Netvibes website[iv] created by IT student, I started thinking about how to create ways to make information available in real time, or with the direct participation of the community. We were already trying to create lists of missing people, when doubts started about the number of dead. So we asked people to share the information they had, and since we couldn’t be waiting for that information to show up on the timeline, I created a form[v] where people could – with some detail – give out the names, residence and origin of the victims, and where they were found. Rumors placed the number of dead around the hundred, but final count marks 43, and that form was useful to have some grasp on reality. The form would then feed a spreadsheet automatically, placed on the website.

I also installed two maps, one giving the number of dead by district[vii], fed through a spreadsheet that automatically placed the marks in the right geolocation; the other was a recent Umapper development, showing geolocated tweets[ix] using the referred #tempad tag. These were easy to set and place and I think they did their job quite well.

It is hard to present a structured research for this assignment about this situation. The technical skills required are not that demanding, and the most rewarding and interesting tools for live mapping did not apply or were too complicated to put into use in a breaking news operation. But as geolocation gains more and more relevance in the production and sharing of content, the standards for online news coverage start to revolve around the concept.

One of the things that struck me is that despite these are tools available for free and easy to use, media don’t take advantage of them. It was really fast to deploy these features on the website, and there wasn’t much science involved, all that is required to respond in a breaking news situation. GoogleDocs are simple to use, and the latest developments allowed them to become almost “just-add-water” apps. What is the real challenge is to choose the right way to present information. It’s the journalist’s discerning view that will make the difference between good and bad web-based newsgathering.


Links and references

[ii]Google Map

[iii] Post with media references http://tinyurl.com/y9wdu3t

[iv] Netvibes website http://tinyurl.com/yhb8zux

[v] Form on page http://tinyurl.com/yhb8zux

[vii] Death Map (on top) http://tinyurl.com/yhb8zux

[ix] Ummaper tweet map at the end of the post  http://tinyurl.com/yapktkz

Information is free. Experience and context are money.

All in? I don't think so...

If you are reading this via RSS go to the real post to enjoy its full effect. There’s free beer.

This has been  in everyone’s mind: how to make journalism a profitable business? Ads, paywalls, premium and freemium contents, there have been many options, but none seems to be working. Murdoch builds walls while others [DDET tear them down.]

Recently Johnston Press decided to give up their paywall since the subscription numbers were appalling, in the single or low double digits.

[/DDET]

The stakes are high, and yet everyone is showing how bad poker players they are, going all in when they don’t have to.

The biggest problem is that there aren’t many users willing to pay for information they know they can get for free someplace else or that is not important for them. I’m not, for sure. Besides, most of  the content news websites have to offer could be in print and my experience as a news consumer would be exactly the same, so why bother? So, how to keep those who want the free stuff, but how to profit from the content generated by journalists?

Imagine that you own a news content production company, and you have a team of talented people who can make good journalism, using [DDET different narratives;]
video, audio, charts, maps, or mixed interactive content, like audioslides, mashups, etc;

Exhibit A

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[/DDET]

Imagine you have those people willing to engage and participate with the community, not only to dig for stories or disseminate their work, but to enrich the community member’s experience with information about the process, or [DDET personal views on the matter;]

information

I think that transparency and time are two valuable items, and that time is the most valuable of them. Communities are part of the newsrooms’ life whether we like it or not, both in the construction and the distribution process. Journalists are the quarterback/midfielder (choose metaphor according to origin) of the news process, receiving the ball and creating options and deciding part of its course, although when it’s out of its hands/feet they should still be focused on the game but let the ball go. The rest of the team is community and the goal is to inform, and like in a real game there are less players than passive audience. I’m still working on this specific metaphor.

Still, people would be part of it, pitch their own stories, creating a crowdsourced model within a traditional news structure.

[/DDET]

Imagine you have tools that allow you to add context or media or extra information like raw bulks of data and that your reporters know how to build an online article with all its basic features but also with extra content that enriches the knowledge and experience of the user, using your own archives, other people’s archives, other websites that you found relevant to the story, ongoing conversations on Twitter and Facebook, ;

Imagine that. And think how you can do all of those things, with the same time, trained to deliver the basic and the ultimate news content. And consider to make some of that ultimate content available for free, just like the basic takeaway content you have. And ask people to pay a fee for the rest, and allow them to embed videos, slideshows, audio in their own websites, and help them look cool in their community because you create cool content. You don’t need to charge much because you are building a brand. The light bulb was sold below production price in the beginning  because it was something everyone would use, and after a while, production costs lowered because there was a lot of demand, and then there was profit.

So this is how I perceive the future of the business will be, a mix between several models, that favors smaller endeavors than juggernauts, and based on quality and engagement, and new ways to create traditional content, in a contextualized way.

So, a rough example would be:

mock news picture

[DDET When,] tell if the situation is still ongoing and you can read more about it here (linked to related article) or it had a previous related event to which we will also link to or show the related media, or even better a timeline of the events [/DDET][DDET what happened,] specific details, more pictures, detailed info, background info [/DDET] where , who was involved, [DDET how yes free yourself! [/DDET]and a basic WHY (that could be expanded to whatever you’d like). If it looks short to you, well, most of the info people read out of articles is all in the first paragraphs, where the w’s and h are.

People would have to pay for the contextual information in the expandable items. This doesn’t mean the free content would be poor, but that the extended content would be really rich.

I confess this is inspired/stolen from Kevin Sablan’s post, and he says context is personal. I say it’s valuable, and providing an experience through information is profitable. It is technically possible and with better results than i presented,  and when you have algorithms gathering and producing readable information, it is wise to reconsider the whole news process, how information is collected, analyzed, produced and distributed, and do it in a way people can use it and be willing to pay for at the same time.

Did you clicked in all the links in this post? Why would you? And if you did, how different was your experience? Are you going back to click a few?  I know you will now.

So, what do you think?

Multimedia Producer x 6 – Part 1

For my MA’s Enterprise assignment, I had to develop a business model for a project. Well, my project was all about promoting myself as a Multimedia Producer. Since I needed a to have a case study, I decided to interview the ones who are in the frontlines. I made a blunder in the second question, which proves you should leave your editing for the morning, and not send emails in the middle of the night, after 16 hours working in front of the computer. But these guys and gal were pretty generous, and gave me good answers anyway.

What I learned from this was that there’s a misconception of what is Multimedia Production on the part of the news companies, and that the market is really hard these days. But there is a need for professionals with multimedia skills. I’d like to thank these magnificent six for their time and contribution, and also to Mindy MacAdams for all the help. Let’s see how the grade turns out.

These are the first three, tomorrow i’ll post the others. Be sure to check out their work.


Jen Friedberg

Jen Friedberg is a multi media producer at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Her work can be seen at http://www.jenfriedberg.com/

What is a Multimedia Producer?

Jen Friedberg's website

A Multimedia Producer is someone who makes sure that all of the proper video, stills and audio are gathered and packaged in a user-friendly way.

The Multimedia Producer may also gather some or all of the content his or herself and/or be the person who creates the display.  The content could be displayed in a single Flash presentation or possibly as smaller components linked to a common HTML based start page.

What is the need for this type of skilled professionals?

A strong knowledge of the basics of web design is a must.  If the producer is not a photographer, videographer or reporter his or her self, he or she must at least be familiar with those processes so that he or she can have a realistic idea about the time and resources needed for each part of the project.  The producer’s job is to deliver quality on budget and on time.

Where can MmP’s work? What are their business opportunities?

Multimedia Producers could be freelancers working for large corporations who need to produce multimedia content for their websites.  Some organizations like hospitals and universities often have their own Multimedia Producers.  They could also work for ad agencies, newspapers or TV stations, NPR or anyone with a large enough website to employ a multimedia producer.  Some examples are Yahoo, google, MSNBC.  Also,there are some new multimedia production houses like Media Storm.

Which are the main problems that a MmP might find in the current situation of the news industry?

New online tools and content management systems are making it easier for less skilled people to put together multimedia projects.  It’s now possible for an organization like a newspaper to use their existing staff to put these projects together without the need for a specialist.  Since newspapers are continuing to downsize, it is unlikely that they would hire a multimedia producer unless he or she had skills in several areas and could function as a photographer, reporter and videographer as well.

Mark S.Luckie

Mark S. Luckie is the author of 10.000words, one of the best blogs about multimedia and online journalism out there. Mark has produced multimedia and interactive projects for Entertainment Weekly, Los Angeles Times and Contra Costa Times (Ca.).

Mark S.Luckie

What is a Multimedia Producer?

In journalism, a multimedia producer is a journalist who combines different media such as photos, video, audio, text, and other media to tell a single story using several storytelling techniques.

What is the need for this type of skilled professionals?

There a wide variety of media skills that fit under the multimedia umbrella, but a multimedia journalist should know at least two different media skills that he or she can combine into a single story.


Where can MmP’s work? What are their business opportunities?

Multimedia producers can work every sort of journalism outlet including newspapers, television and radio stations, all of which have companion online sites where the multimedia stories resides. Multimedia producers can also work in other fields such as advertising and marketing, as well as freelance for the aforementioned industries.


Which are the main problems that a MmP might find in the current situation of the news industry?

Although multimedia skills are in demand, many news media do not have the financial resources to hire multimedia producers. There are a growing number of multimedia professionals, all of whom are competing for the same jobs. A marketable multimedia producer must have even more skills the average producer to ensure they land one of these coveted positions.

Zach Wise

zach wise

Zach Wise is an award-winning producer for The New York Times. Most recently his work a Peabody award and an Emmy nomination for “Choosing a President”. Before coming to the Times, he was the Senior Multimedia Producer at the Las Vegas Sun, where his work won many awards. He contributed to a Pulitzer prize winning piece on construction deaths on the Las Vegas Strip. His work at the Sun was also recognized at the Webby Awards, National Headliner’s Awards, Online News Association and NPPA Best of Photojournalism.

Wise was also a visiting professor for The School of Visual Communication at Ohio University where he was the executive producer of the Soul of Athens multimedia project and taught the classes that produced it. The project went on to win multiple awards from POYi and NPPA’s Best of Photojournalism.


What is a Multimedia Producer?

In the newspaper/journalism world this generally means someone who produces audio/visual narratives or interactive. In other professions such as tv/film/advertising a producer is the person who oversees a project. I was very confused by this when I first entered journalism having previously worked in the world of tv/film/advertising.

What is the need for this type of skilled professionals?

Not sure I understand this question. The skills needed? or the demand?

Where can MmP’s work? What are their business opportunities?

When I was teaching multimedia, most of my students found work in advertising and the corporate sector. In journalism, there is a great need for talented producers but few opportunities as with most jobs in journalism right now.

Which are the main problems that a MmP might find in the current situation of the news industry?

Quantity over quality is a large problem at smaller companies who are struggling with their identity as a news source.

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Read the other three interviews here.