Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Roanoke reporter video

I recently spoke at a University of Florida seminar and it is posted on Mindy McAdams' blog at:

I’d like to point out that I may have given a wrong impression in describing Roanoke’s videos.

I characterized their video efforts as low end, mixed with photographers’ high-end video.

Rather than using point-and-shoot cameras as I said, they are using decent mini-dv cameras in their newsroom and have brought in outside training for their reporters to make sure their quality stays high. The video I showed during the presentation was not typical of their report.

I was trying to differentiate between Roanoke.com’s deliberately not-like-TV approach to video and the TV-on-the-net approach of their sister company, HamptonRoads.tv. I was trying to point out the very different approaches taken by different papers in the U.S., and made it sound like Roanoke doesn’t do quality work. Nothing could be further from the truth. (In my defense, I was trying to avoid mentioning that paper in California that I usually pick on…. )

I did not highlight some of the great and sophisticated reporter’s work (such as http://www.roanoke.com/multimedia/video/wb/120830 (High School graduate takes big steps))that they’re doing in Roanoke on a regular basis, so I left the impression that they’re only doing low-end. They aren’t. Roanoke is doing incredible work in multimedia. Their day-in and day-out multimedia coverage of Virginia Tech athletics is a model for our industry and is something I regularly point to as the way it should be done.

If this sounds like I’m sucking up to Seth Gitner and his work at Roanoke, you’re right. He’s doing things right there and I wronged him when I shouldn’t have. In this era of ever-tightening budgets and reduced resources, Roanoke still manages to produce quality work on a daily basis.

My apologies.
Chuck Fadely