Adam Westbrook // ideas on digital storytelling and publishing

Maybe letter writing does work…

Posted in Adam, Broadcasting and Media by Adam Westbrook on April 16, 2007

Today’s Media Guardian has a spread announcing the launch of the 2007 Student Media Awards – the annual parade of student journalism talent in the UK.

And for the first time, there’s a category for Student Broadcaster of the Year.

It’s taken 12 months exactly…but maybe letter writing does work:

Letter to the Media Guardian

Shame all three of us are no longer elible to enter though.

[Cheers to Doidge for the tip off]

Local TV on the way?

Posted in Uncategorized by Adam Westbrook on November 20, 2006

Interesting article in the Press Gazette this week: the Newspaper Society’s apparently criticised a report saying that the BBC’s Local TV project won’t damage the local press industry.

The BBC’s Laughton Report investigated the impact of the BBC’s uber-local TV project, piloted in the West Midlands about a year ago, a daily 10 minute programme of news focussing on small areas. It concluded there was:

“no statistically significant impact on newspaper circulation figures in the region” and that “Daily recorded 7-10 minute bulletins and on-demand news items and features are unlikely to have a significant impact on other players in local markets.”

BBC Local TV imageAs a result, the BBC is apparently planning a full roll out of 66 Local TV strands across the UK pending a Board of Governers’ decision. The Newspaper Society doesn’t agree though and is inherently threatened by the BBC’s plans.  

As indeed all newspaper hacks seem inherently threatened by anything that doesn’t use endless reams of paper and utilises that magic substance they call ‘electricity’.

As a wannabe VJ at Uni in Warwick, near Coventry, I near soiled myself when the pilot began in my area. It was for the most part successful (i.e. interesting) and was a mixed bag of crime, council news and silly stories. The production quality was at times questionable, but overall good.

I hope it rolls out next year, and I don’t think it’ll threaten local papers, just offer them stiff competition. Most local papers have a regularly updated website anyway.

But Joe, a colleague on my BJ course here at City, made quite a good point about the Local TV idea. It would seem there’s an inherent contradiction within the scheme. On the one hand, it makes news as local as it can get – daily 10 minute chunks of stuff at the end of your road; the people who tend to dig this sort of stuff are in their autumn years, and wary of new technology.

BBC Local TVOn the other hand, Local TV is the most hi-tech form of BBC journalism: a mix of online and “press the red button now”, not to mention it’s use of Video Journalism.  Who digs this? Young people. But they hate local news.

So there’s a dodgy contradiction here, which might stop the scheme creating a successful identity for itself.  But it’s a natural, inevitable conclusion in the hi-tech newsworld, and ought to please people who feel their half-hourly dose of regional TV is as local as Newsnight.

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More frustration

Posted in Uncategorized by Adam Westbrook on November 10, 2006

The bulletins yesterday went very well, and the interest rate announcement at midday made it pretty exciting.

In the end I didn’t get time to put my off-diary story about the lack of poppies on sale together (see here). Didn’t think much of it, until the London Lite ran the same story on their frontpage. Whoops.

After all the technical cock-ups on Wednesday it’s been a week of “how not to be a reporter”.

In other news, lots of lovely golds and silvers for RaW – my old student radio station – at the swanky student radio awards last night…not mention all sorts of goss…more soon (when the hangovers gone!)

And the nominations are in…

Posted in Uncategorized by Adam Westbrook on October 14, 2006

Raw logoCongrats to all at RaW this week after netting 8 Student Radio Award nominations.

Highlights include:

  • Chris Doidge’s interview with David Davis in the best interview category.
  • Matt Robeiro’s nomination for Best Newcomer
  • The Doppelganger radio play’s nomination in Best Comedy and Drama RaW Sport’s nomination in both Comedy and Drama and best interview (but not in the specific sport or journalism categories)
  • Digiplay got nominated for Technological Innovation
  • And a Best Entertainment nomination for Jimmy-the-B and yours truly.
  • And to top it all, we got a Best Station nomination as well!

Sadly missing was RaW News and the Electronic Music specialists. The big ceremony/piss up commences in a few weeks in Covent Garden, and it’s set to be a bit of a competition here at City Uni as well…three other people on the Broadcast course are nominated in other categories…but I’m with RaW all the way, honest!

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