Thursday, March 13, 2008

Recent Newsround press pack reports showing press packers holding cameras and switching between the Press Pack Cam and the ordinary Newsround camera. What's that all about? Nothing like that in School Report today, which incidentally included a school's piece about equality and civil partnerships and another's about the need for better sex education (by the way, one of the Youth Parliament campaigns)

Take Tuesday's road safety report by Megan. First we saw a short clip of traffic outside Megan's school filmed by a Newsround camera, and then a cut to video from Megan's hand-held Press Pack Cam. Her footage is "helpfully" distinguished for viewers by a rectangular red viewfinder border, the words "Press Pack Cam" in red lettering and a red flashing "record indicator" - all of which are presumably added post-filming by the Newsround production team, and intended to simulate what would be seen in Megan's viewfinder.

At one point we see Megan filming interviews with some of her classmates; the view from the Newsround camera zooms in to show a closeup of Megan's viewfinder and it doesn't look anything like the obtrusive pretend view with its "Press Pack Cam" in big red letters and red framing border - surprise, surprise!

So Megan's report employs the use of a BBC camera and sound crew plus her "Press Pack Cam." Newsround could instead trust press packers to make their own reports and send them in without any need for a professional camera crew and without interference from the BBC - but then the BBC seems to be such a control freak organisation that it'll probably never happen.

If they insist on making such an issue of press packers' hand-held cameras then Newsround should go the distance and trust kids to make their own news reports.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Dave,

Our Press Packers haven't felt ready to film their entire reports on their own just yet. This is a step in the right direction to make this happen. So far the members of our club interested in mmaking TV reports have given us great feedback on this technique. They tend to be younger than the School Report kids and many do not have access to video cameras etc - hence the half and half method.
Sinead @ Newsround