The People Want Live Video. Here’s How Reuters Responded


This post is by Joe Strupp from MediaShift


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Reuters is taking video live-streaming to another level with a new multi-feed service it claims gives print outlets a leg up on their broadcast rivals. Reuters Connect, launched several months ago, now boasts “real-time coverage of up to six concurrent news events for use by television broadcasters and professional video publishers,” according to an announcement. Heather Carpenter, Reuters public relations manager and head of special projects, adds via email: “We developed the product after seeing an interesting trend among our media customers: an 88% surge in demand for live video since June last year. With the new service, broadcasters and publishers will be able to access up to six different streaming news feeds to publish across their platforms. This will also help traditional print outlets compete with broadcasters, since they’ll now be able to live-stream news events in the same way broadcasters do.” The service taps into what
Continue reading "The People Want Live Video. Here’s How Reuters Responded"

Henry Blodget: We’re “deeply underestimating how big digital media can be” in the next decade


This post is by Shan Wang from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Many of the digital news organization that used to be called startups have outgrown the term — they’re established players by now. Among that group: the Axel Springer-owned Business Insider, which is turning 10. (Its Silicon Alley Insider brand officially launched July 19, 2007, though the earliest posts were a couple months before.) The main site hit 50.8 million unique visitors this past May, according to comScore, up 15 percent from a year ago and placing it third behind Forbes Digital and Yahoo Finance in the business news sites category (Business Insider, like other sites with a distributed presence, disputes comScore measures as incomplete). Its research arm hit 7,500 subscribers the same month. And with a leg up from Axel Springer, especially in Europe, it continues to eye new countries for localized editions of BI. “The digital media industry is just now hitting its stride,” Business Insider Continue reading "Henry Blodget: We’re “deeply underestimating how big digital media can be” in the next decade"

The New York Times’ popular morning news podcast The Daily is coming to weekends and to Spotify


This post is by Shan Wang from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




The New York Times’s morning news (“narrative news“) podcast will soon come out on weekends as well. Other ambitious Serial-style audio shows are also in the works, the company announced at its NewFront presentation in New York Monday morning. The Times’ presentation included a live rendition of The Daily, hosted by Michael Barbaro with Times executive producer of audio Lisa Tobin, interviewing prolific White House correspondent Maggie Haberman. The Times is also exploring how to bot-ify Barbaro, so Times listeners and readers might eventually be able to interact with “him” in the way that users interact with Alexa on Amazon Echo. By Continue reading "The New York Times’ popular morning news podcast The Daily is coming to weekends and to Spotify"

The 74 is getting into Spanish-language education reporting, starting in Los Angeles


This post is by Shan Wang from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




The small Los Angeles-based education site LA School Report is relaunching today under the auspices of The 74, alongside a mirror site in Spanish which will attempt to dive further into original Spanish-language education reporting. The 74, an education news site cofounded by former CNN anchor Campbell Brown, had absorbed the four-and-a-half year old LA School Report — which had previously been a tiny but consistent presence in coverage of the Los Angeles Unified School District — in February. “It was a natural fit to have them merge into The 74, as we were looking to ramp up our presence in terms of our West Coast reporting, and we’re already big admirers of the work that LA School Report was doing, really owning that Los Angeles education beat,” Romy Drucker, cofounder and CEO, told me. “This is at a time that Los Angeles was emerging as a Continue reading "The 74 is getting into Spanish-language education reporting, starting in Los Angeles"

How Snapchat is Changing the Way We Communicate


This post is by Bethany Swain from MediaShift


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Bethany Swain admits on Snapchat that "sometimes I get carried away snapchatting sequences." (Snapchat selfie: Bethany Swain)

Bethany Swain admits on Snapchat that “sometimes I get carried away snapchatting sequences.” (Snapchat selfie: Bethany Swain)

Thousands of years ago, cavemen painted in caves to tell stories. Today, my students’ favorite way to share stories is an app where their posts disappear after they’ve been watched. Unlike the cave paintings of bison and birds, Snapchats are only designed to last 24 hours after they’ve been shared. Snapchat is changing the way we communicate. The app is affecting our audience, even if you don’t use the social media platform. I noticed changes in video throughout all my social media, and I don’t think it’s a coincidence that I began seeing these changes at the same time I started to use Snapchat. I was confused when my students first asked me to join Snapchat. I didn’t understand the appeal of an app with disappearing messages. But this is an appealing way
Susan Shinn UMD '17 works on a story for her ViewFinder capstone class. Her video is produced horizontally because it will be enjoyed on numerous platforms (snapchat: Bethany Swain)
Bradleigh Chance UMD '15 works for NBC and ran the @MSNBC Snapchat account for a behind the scenes look at the red carpet at the White House Correspondents Dinner on April 30, 2016.
Multiple screens for breaking news (Photo: Bethany Swain).
Good Luck America with Peter Hamby is an example of the original content Snapchat is creating for the audience to consume in their app, on their phones.
Continue reading "How Snapchat is Changing the Way We Communicate"

Bloomberg’s new global chief of digital innovation on the company’s careful hunt for new audiences


This post is by Shan Wang from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Ensconced within the larger Bloomberg empire, Bloomberg’s editorial operations are in an enviably comfortable position. “If you look at our approach at how we play on platforms that we don’t own, compared to other media companies, you’ll see we do it a little differently, because we’re part of a bigger exceedingly well-capitalized, healthy — for lack of a better term — technology company,” Michael Shane, Bloomberg Media’s newly appointed global head of digital innovation, told me. “So we aren’t subject to the stormy winds of the rest of the media industry.” michael-shane-headshotShane was previously managing editor for Bloomberg digital and before that director of operations at The Verge, which he joined shortly after its launch — and before that, a professional clarinetist. He was especially confident in the new readership he felt Bloomberg was poised to attract globally, and the monetization opportunities that come from building a Continue reading "Bloomberg’s new global chief of digital innovation on the company’s careful hunt for new audiences"

Must Reads in Media & Technology: Sept. 30


This post is by Kelly O'Mara from MediaShift


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Must Reads is MediaShift’s daily curation of the big stories about media and technology from across the web. Sign up here to get these delivered right to your inbox.

1. Survey of Large Publishers: 30 Percent of Our Website Visits Come From Facebook (Joseph Lichterman / Nieman Lab)

2. Washington Post Initiative Aims to Keep Reporters From Writing ‘Unnecessarily Long’ (Bejamin Mullin / Poynter)

ADVERTISEMENT

3. The Inevitable Burst of the Video Bubble (Esther Kezia Harding / The Media Briefing)

4. Publishers Tweak Their Approach to Facebook Live (Jeremy Barr / AdAge)

5. The Times of London is Shuttering Its International Paid Weekly App (Joseph Lichterman / Nieman Lab)

ADVERTISEMENT

6. Why Time Inc. is Expanding Its Contributor Networks (Max Willens / Digiday)

Frontline is finding new mic-drop moments for good old-fashioned reporting


This post is by Laura Hazard Owen from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Raney Aronson grew up without television. Her mother and stepfather were back-to-the-landers who moved the family to a rural Vermont town when Aronson was eight, grew their own organic food, and occasionally took Raney and her brothers and sisters to the local theater to see documentaries. That gives Aronson, one year into her role as executive producer of PBS’s Frontline, something in common with the next generation of Frontline viewers: Watching stuff on TV isn’t a big part of their lives, either. Frontline’s original producer, David Fanning, never believed that Frontline was operating in some golden age of television, even in the pre-Internet era. “We have a minute to a minute and 30 seconds to prevent zapping,” he told The Washington Post in 1991. Frontline launched its first website, with supplemental materials for episodes airing on broadcast, in 1995, and began streaming some full-length episodes online in 2003. Continue reading "Frontline is finding new mic-drop moments for good old-fashioned reporting"

With a scripted daily comedy news show, Mic looks to add a little late night TV to the social video mold


This post is by Shan Wang from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




None of my friends own (working) TVs. Left-leaning, smartphone-toting, annoyingly predictable content consumers that we are, we’re instead constantly emailing each other links to clips from shows like John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight and Samantha Bee’s Full Frontal. The other week, an outlier snuck in among our usual fare: a two-minute clip about Florida Governor Rick Scott from a new Mic daily series called Mic Check. The show takes a page from these satirical news shows — which makes sense, given the backgrounds of its young team members. “His state is plagued by giant snakes and deadly sinkholes, and he still manages to be the worst part,” host Sage Boggs, whose priors include Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and The Late Show with David Letterman, quips in the video. Boggs helps write the scripts for the Mic Check segments and hosts the show, along with staff writer Natasha Noman. mic-check-videos-facebook
Mic-Check-video-Facebook-nudity
Continue reading "With a scripted daily comedy news show, Mic looks to add a little late night TV to the social video mold"

Inspired by “independent YouTubers,” wary of cable, Vox.com takes its explainer mission to video


This post is by Laura Hazard Owen from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Last fall, Vox.com published a video on Syria’s civil war to its YouTube channel, where it’s ended up with nearly 2.5 million views. Vox editor-in-chief Ezra Klein also posted it to his Facebook page, where it racked up millions of views. (Today it has more than 53 million views and has been shared nearly a million times.) A few days later, Vox writers started getting tweets and Facebook posts accusing Klein of freebooting: vox screenshot 2 vox screenshot “The way this person knew Vox was as a YouTube brand,” Klein told me. “When he saw that someone was taking our videos and making them viral on Facebook and it wasn’t Vox, he was honestly upset.” The anecdote goes to show that the Vox brand means different things to different people, and “explainer website launched by Washington Post wunderkind Ezra Klein” is probably not the most common. “There are a lot Continue reading "Inspired by “independent YouTubers,” wary of cable, Vox.com takes its explainer mission to video"

Live, local, late breaking: On Facebook Live, news outlets take a cue from TV (but don’t call it TV)


This post is by Shan Wang from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Around 5 p.m. on April 1, everyone in our little office crowded around my desk, watching a live video of baby goats roaming inside BuzzFeed Motion Pictures president Ze Frank’s office — a prank by staffers for his birthday. Would Frank be angry? Would the goats escape?? Would chaos ensue?! Five of us waited for the grand climax, baffled by our own interest, along with 81,000 other viewers.

One week later, BuzzFeed was at it again, lassoing the Friday afternoon bored-at-work Facebook crowd — including, the entirety of media Twitter — with a live video of two staffers putting rubber bands around a watermelon until the fruit exploded.

At peak, 807,000 were watching and waiting for the moment of explosion. (This is far from the first time an exploding watermelon has captivated the Internet.)

This is the power of Facebook Live, the platform’s — and Zuckerberg’s — latest

BBC-Facebook-Brussels
Fusion-Facebook-Live-comments
Fusion-Facebook-Cuba-correspondents-live
Daily-Beast-Cheat-Sheet-Facebook-Live
HBR-Facebook-Live
HuffPo-Facebook-live-primaries-kasich-rally
Continue reading "Live, local, late breaking: On Facebook Live, news outlets take a cue from TV (but don’t call it TV)"

Bloomberg’s Hello World tech-and-travel show trades talking heads for Vice-like filmmaking


This post is by Ricardo Bilton from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




For Bloomberg, making video for the web means rethinking everything it knows about the stories people want and how they want them told.

Last week, Bloomberg premiered Hello World, a half-hour technology and travel series hosted by Bloomberg Businessweek technology reporter Ashlee Vance. The show’s first stop is New Zealand, where Vance interviewed scientists and inventors about artificial intelligence babies, rockets, and robot exoskeletons.

The project is a departure from the bulk of Bloomberg’s television output, which consists largely of traditional daily finance and politics coverage from talking heads in television studios. Hello World, in comparison, is meant to be more accessible and easier for the average person to absorb. The show, for example, weaves in Snapchat videos from Vance and the Hello World crew in an effort to make

Hello"
Continue reading "Bloomberg’s Hello World tech-and-travel show trades talking heads for Vice-like filmmaking"

#EdShift Chat: Visual Storytelling


This post is by Stacy Forster from MediaShift


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Some say 2015 was the year of video, as social media video viewed on such platforms as Facebook, Periscope, Snapchat and more exploded, and viewership of all forms of video expanded. And while it’s easier than ever to watch real-time or produced video, it’s also easier to create it. How do you join in the trend in 2016 and start creating visual stories that will engage audiences? Join us on Tuesday, Tuesday, Jan. 19, starting at 1 p.m. Eastern time/Noon Central/10 a.m. Pacific time, for an #EdShift Twitter chat about visual storytelling and how new digital tools and platforms are making it easier than ever to connect with audiences through video. The chat, which you can find by searching for the #EdShift Twitter hashtag, will be moderated by Stacy Forster of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Participants will include journalist and filmmaker Bill Gentile, Al Tompkins of Continue reading "#EdShift Chat: Visual Storytelling"

Bloomberg Business’ new look has made a splash — but don’t just call it a redesign


This post is by Caroline O'Donovan from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Bloomberg launched a fresh, new Bloomberg Business Tuesday night, to both acclaim and confusion. Change has long been afoot lately at Bloomberg Media, which hired Justin B. Smith away from Atlantic Media in 2013 and Josh Topolsky away from The Verge last July to help reconfigure the company’s digital presence. The new look — inspired in part by the boldness of Bloomberg Businessweek, the print magazine the company bought in 2009 — is fresh, colorful, and not a little bit dizzying. In a piece for VentureBeat called “Bloomberg Business’ new site design is beautifully bizarre — and it’s begging for haters,” Harrison Weber writes that the design “pulls you in as much as it spits in your eye. Yet, for some reason, I want more.” This sentiment was, meaningfully, echoed on Twitter.

CNN, anywhere: How TV Everywhere strategy is evolving in the world of cable news


This post is by Caroline O'Donovan from Nieman Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




It’s 2014, and if you want to, you can watch cable news live on a mobile device from pretty much anywhere. It might well stream poorly, and you’ll have a hard time figuring out how to log in to (or “authenticate”) your account, but you can do it. TV Everywhere has begun to make simulcasting available from a variety of networks and channels — according to Adobe’s state-of-the-industry report (via The New York Times), viewership has grown 246 percent in the last year. Companies have started experimenting with what’s possible in terms of bringing broadcast TV content to smartphones and tablets. For example, NBC notably broke traffic records with its Olympics coverage last fall, which was pushed out live on mobile. WatchESPN has also been remarkably popular. But over the summer, CNN has rolled out a product meant to go above and beyond what competitors offer when it comes to live, mobile TV news. Of its competitors, CNN’s Alex Wellen says, “They’re usually one app, for one show on one network that’s probably pre-baked and planned for and needs to be synchronized. So I think it’s a different proposition altogether.”
The proposition he’s referring to is CNNgo, which originally launched as CNNx in April. Available on iPad or desktop, CNNgo can be accessed by TV Everywhere subscribers who can remember their cable login and password.1 The new name — CNNgo mirrors the successful HBO GO as well as CNN’s new slogan, “Go There” — will bring with it a week of no-authentication-needed streaming that includes bonus content from Anthony Bourdain, Mike Rowe, and Lisa Ling. CNN is hoping the combination of exclusive on-demand content and an authentication-free experience will seduce users into testing — and falling for — the product. “CNNx is all about control, whether it’s controlling what you watch or when you watch, how much depth you get around a particular segment, how you share it, how you personalize it — it really was about control,” says Wellen, vice president of product, strategy, and operations. “The control in the past had always been inside the control room. The director decided what segments came up. Our goal was to put the consumer inside the control room. When we knew it, you knew it.” When you open up CNNgo, it starts playing whatever’s currently on CNN. Along the bottom, you’ll see a few choice, curated links from social media — photos, tweets — selected by a CNNgo standalone editorial team. CNNgo2 But the real feature is a sidebar that allows users to both look ahead at the day’s rundown as well as scroll back and watch already aired content from the last 24 hours. So, if you’re not interested in watching Wolf Blitzer talk about climate change at 1 p.m., you can go back and watch Obama’s comments on ISIS from 10 a.m. while you wait for a segment on the IDF to air around 1:45. Thus is the traditional, top-down, linear model for broadcast TV tweaked into a digital approach that allows users to choose what they watch — at least within the world of already-aired CNN content. CNNgo-images CNNgo squares nicely with the network’s “always on” public image. The difference between an app like this and other second screen and TV Everywhere apps, according to Wellen, is the ability (or ambition) to handle breaking news. “If there’s breaking news, first, pictures come in. We can deliver that in the app. You can see those first pictures, as opposed to waiting for it to come on the screen,” he says. “In most other scenarios, if something happens unexpected, the app falls apart. This app actually thrives when there’s breaking news, which is exactly what CNN is.” As far as what kind of audience CNNgo has brought in thus far, Wellen would only say that it’s “early days” for the product.2 But TV Everywhere viewership continues to climb for CNN, with August breaking all previous records. More impressive is the average time spent per user — a somewhat astounding (and almost TV-like) 47 minutes on the iPad and 104 minutes on desktop.
That kind of time investment is, of course, music to the ears of advertisers. Video content is already a solid proposition for marketers, but CNNgo offers something more — data about individual users and the exact segments they do and don’t want to watch. Someday, information on what content viewers click on and what content they choose to ignore might even inform coverage. “Should the focus be on engagement…whether they’re staying in this experience longer, how many segments they’re watching? That could inform some of our programming,” says Wellen. “The segments that are performing better, where we lose people in a particular story, that could inform a lot of what we do across all platforms.” CNNx launched initially on iPad because the device fit both the “lean in” and “lean back” experience, Wellen says. The move to desktop was mostly aimed at getting more viewers interested. For now, the iPhone screen is a little small for all of CNNgo’s functionality, but someday CNNgo will be the standard face of CNN across platforms. “The reality is people want to time shift and get context and share TV wherever they are. It will be, I think, critical for us to put that in the palm of your hand, which is your phone,” says Wellen. “I would say that what we’re doing with this product is really setting the future architecture for CNN.”
Photo by Peter Dutton used under a Creative Commons license.
Notes
  1. This login tutorial from Fox gives you a sense of the difficulties the average cable TV viewer faces when it comes to authentication.
  2. Measuring digital TV audience, especially on mobile, is notoriously murky. Writes Deborah Potter of TV News Lab in an email: “I’m afraid to say that no one really has reliable numbers on TV viewership on mobile devices. Nielsen says they’ll begin to measure that this fall but it’s not clear they’ll be able to do it effectively right off the bat. ComScore says it can track ads on mobile but I wouldn’t call that an audience measurement. Individual programs (especially major sports events) have put out live stream numbers based on authenticated log-ins through TV Everywhere systems and other video technology systems like Ooyala have their own measurements but again, that doesn’t cover all viewership.”

The third draft of history: Retro Report looks back at media-hyped stories of the recent past


This post is by Caroline O'Donovan from Nieman Journalism Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




When trying to get people excited about his video news nonprofit, Chris Buck relies on one question to get the conversation started. Do power lines cause cancer? Buck founded Retro Report about two years ago, although the idea for an investigative, video-based media criticism project had been percolating with Buck well before that.
“Do power lines cause cancer? I love asking that question,” he says. “We all remember that story — if you’re of a certain age anyway. Eighty percent of the people are like, I don’t know, do they? After all that stress and strife the country went to trying to figure out if their kids were safe, we don’t know!” With Retro Report, Buck wanted to revisit some of these major headlines from the recent past and, with the help of over two dozen investigative reporters and video producers, figure out how these major events — and the reporting around them — look different in retrospect. For example, remember all those stories in the 1980s and 1990s about the crack baby epidemic — children of addicts who were supposedly “destined to a lifetime of pain and suffering”? One episode of Retro Report discusses the research that originated that claim, and how it became so wildly overblown: Love Canal, the McMartin preschool “Satanic abuse” case, Biosphere 2, Tawana Brawley, the medfly scare, the McDonald’s spilled coffee lawsuit — for people of a certain age, Retro Report will bring memories of nightly newscasts from the late ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s rushing back. The idea for Retro Report actually came to Buck 15 years ago, watching TV. “A Saturday afternoon, they came on to tease the news, and the reporter said, Is your water killing your children? Details at 10. My dad and I had a discussion about how unfair it is — this temporal advantage that newscasters have to leave us hanging, to scare us into watching the news,” says Buck. That kind of headline baiting hasn’t gone away. Perhaps you’ve seen a Huffington Post teaser headline like this one: But on Twitter, one man with more than 34,000 followers has proven the satisfaction audiences get from seeing those inflated headlines burst, saving you a click: < p> What Buck is doing with Retro Report is not wholly dissimilar — only the stories are decades instead of minutes old and the format is 12-13 minute mini-documentaries. Retro Report is personally funded by Buck, whose day job is managing his family’s foundation, which does not contribute financially to Retro Report. With around 35 published videos under its belt, Buck says the next move is to look for philanthropic funding. “It’s kind of a transitional period right now,” he says. “I’m doing a lot of thinking about what we’re going to need in five years, and what the management structure should look like.” Much of the Retro Report aesthetic comes from working with journalists who have experience at organizations like Frontline and 60 Minutes, including managing editor Kyra Darnton. Buck hired Darnton as the concept for Retro Report was still being shaped. At one point, he and cofounder Larry Chollet had conceived of the project as primarily text based, with video augmentation. Later, after hiring documentarian Stephen Ives, the project became video focused — but Buck felt it still lacked a reporting edge. “There was no real strong investigation,” he said. “There wasn’t that component that we would need, in the end, to dig into these stories a little deeper.” It was then that he hired Darnton, who brought a strong culture of storytelling with her from 60 Minutes — though she says she thinks of the videos as mini-documentaries more than newsmagazine pieces. For Darnton, part of the joy of the project is producing videos that help journalists think about their present-day work. For example, the story on the “superpredator” scare of the 1990s resulted in a piece at Poynter reminding journalists about the danger of inflating statistics. Science reporting, with its inherent complications, has proved to be especially fertile ground for germinating Retro Report stories. “That says a lot about the way science is reported,” she says. “It really takes the passage of time to know if something was a breakthrough or wasn’t a breakthrough.”
Producing a broadcast-caliber video every week is expensive — consider the cost of re-reporting each TV news story, plus the content licensing for old clips. (Most of the older content Retro Report uses falls under fair use — and they keep fair use lawyers around, ready to defend that argument — but some of it ends up being paid for.) Philanthropically-backed investigative journalism is not new, but documentary film is a costly addition — and that’s not the extent of Buck and Darnton’s ambition. “Our vision for this project is that we’ll eventually have a living library of modern news events,” says Darnton. “You’ll be able to come to our website and search by theme, by person, by year, and put together different short videos and watch them. It’s almost like a choose-your-own-adventure book.”

Finding a home at the Times

The real coup for Retro Report came early on, when Ann Derry, The New York Times’ editorial director for video and television partnerships, agreed to distribute all of their content. “At that point, the only other outside video content we were running on our website was Op-Docs, which was something I started about four years ago,” Derry says of Retro Report. “I thought it was excellent. I thought, this is what we should be doing, but we’re not doing it. Luckily, they are!” The Times posts new Retro Report content every Monday when it’s in its production season and distributes their videos on Hulu, YouTube, Yahoo, and AOL. From its inception, the Times has added text stories to the Retro Report content, at first as part of the now-defunct Boomer blog, later via beat reporters, and now through former Times columnist Clyde Haberman. Darnton also regularly meets with an editor on the news desk to discuss stories and coverage. Sometimes, as with the story of Vietnam War protesters who stole FBI documents in 1971, the Times adds additional reporting and an original package to a Retro Report story. In a more recent case, reaction to the “superpredators” video ended up in print on the Times opinion pages.
Derry says Retro Report videos are “shockingly popular” and are consistently among the most-watched pieces of video content at the Times. “Everyone says to me: When are we going to find another Retro Report?” she says. Times executive editor Jill Abramson has often said she believes it’s the Times’ responsibility to tell “the story behind the story.” Retro Report, Derry says, accomplishes that mission in a visually compelling and powerful way. “If you say journalism is the first draft of history, this is like the third draft of history. You see how it’s reported, what the first draft was, and then you see what was really going on. We learn more about the story and/or you learn the effects, on social policy or politics,” she says. Since bringing in Retro Report, the Times has added a variety of outside video content producers to its roster, including a series on skiing with Teton Gravity Research, car reviews with Tom Volk and interviews with women entrepreneurs in a collaboration with StoryExchange. “We’re acting in a very mini way like a television network,” says Derry. “Most television networks don’t produce all their own programming in house. They may produce some or none of it, and they certainly go to outside people.” The Times’ strategy for video was further elucidated last week at the Times’ Digital NewFronts presentation. Rebecca Howard, general manager of video production, announced Times Video at the event, a newly designed hub for the paper’s ever-expanding video content offerings. She underscored how the Times plans to incorporate its existing star columnists and reporters into its video strategy, while also continuing to seek out partnerships outside the paper. For example, the Times has entered into a new partnership with Vimeo with a video series on “adventurous eating” called The Perennial Plate. The Times is training more of its journalists to shoot iPhone video, but the overall strategy seems focused on video with a more documentary feel, production that reflects the core values of Times journalism — quality, character, originality, and wit, according to CEO Mark Thompson. “In the last year and a half, there’s been a whole anti-short-web-video thing circulating, saying people watch much longer content on the web if it’s good enough,” Derry says. “Retro pretty much bears that out.” Around the same time that Buck was preparing to launch Retro Report, he was inspired by a Nieman Lab story in which Megan Garber wrote: “What if we had an outlet dedicated to continuity journalism — a news organization whose sole purpose was to follow up on stories whose sheer magnitude precludes them from ongoing treatment by our existing media outlets?” Retro Report accomplishes that goal by bringing up long-forgotten controversies, and then satisfying the desire to know what’s happened in the intervening years. In doing so, it plays into an important dynamic of digital audience that we’ve learned from BuzzFeed and its ilk: Nostalgia is a powerful driver of eyeballs online. Says Buck: “It scratches an itch.”
News broadcast image of J. Edgar Hoover via Retro Report.

The third draft of history: Retro Report looks back at media-hyped stories of the recent past


This post is by Caroline O'Donovan from Nieman Journalism Lab


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




When trying to get people excited about his video news nonprofit, Chris Buck relies on one question to get the conversation started. Do power lines cause cancer? Buck founded Retro Report about two years ago, although the idea for an investigative, video-based media criticism project had been percolating with Buck well before that.
“Do power lines cause cancer? I love asking that question,” he says. “We all remember that story — if you’re of a certain age anyway. Eighty percent of the people are like, I don’t know, do they? After all that stress and strife the country went to trying to figure out if their kids were safe, we don’t know!” With Retro Report, Buck wanted to revisit some of these major headlines from the recent past and, with the help of over two dozen investigative reporters and video producers, figure out how these major events — and the reporting around them — look different in retrospect. For example, remember all those stories in the 1980s and 1990s about the crack baby epidemic — children of addicts who were supposedly “destined to a lifetime of pain and suffering”? One episode of Retro Report discusses the research that originated that claim, and how it became so wildly overblown: Love Canal, the McMartin preschool “Satanic abuse” case, Biosphere 2, Tawana Brawley, the medfly scare, the McDonald’s spilled coffee lawsuit — for people of a certain age, Retro Report will bring memories of nightly newscasts from the late ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s rushing back. The idea for Retro Report actually came to Buck 15 years ago, watching TV. “A Saturday afternoon, they came on to tease the news, and the reporter said, Is your water killing your children? Details at 10. My dad and I had a discussion about how unfair it is — this temporal advantage that newscasters have to leave us hanging, to scare us into watching the news,” says Buck. That kind of headline baiting hasn’t gone away. Perhaps you’ve seen a Huffington Post teaser headline like this one: But on Twitter, one man with more than 34,000 followers has proven the satisfaction audiences get from seeing those inflated headlines burst, saving you a click: < p> What Buck is doing with Retro Report is not wholly dissimilar — only the stories are decades instead of minutes oldand the format is 12-13 minute mini-documentaries. Retro Report is personally funded by Buck, whose day job is managing his family’s foundation, which does not contribute financially to Retro Report. With around 35 published videos under its belt, Buck says the next move is to look for philanthropic funding. “It’s kind of a transitional period right now,” he says. “I’m doing a lot of thinking about what we’re going to need in five years, and what the management structure should look like.” Much of the Retro Report aesthetic comes from working with journalists who have experience at organizations like Frontline and 60 Minutes, including managing editor Kyra Darnton. Buck hired Darnton as the concept for Retro Report was still being shaped. At one point, he and cofounder Larry Chollet had conceived of the project as primarily text based, with video augmentation. Later, after hiring documentarian Stephen Ives, the project became video focused — but Buck felt it still lacked a reporting edge. “There was no real strong investigation,” he said. “There wasn’t that component that we would need, in the end, to dig into these stories a little deeper.” It was then that he hired Darnton, who brought a strong culture of storytelling with her from 60 Minutes — though she says she thinks of the videos as mini-documentaries more than newsmagazine pieces. For Darnton, part of the joy of the project is producing videos that help journalists think about their present-day work. For example, the story on the “superpredator” scare of the 1990s resulted in a piece at Poynter reminding journalists about the danger of inflating statistics. Science reporting, with its inherent complications, has proved to be especially fertile ground for germinating Retro Report stories. “That says a lot about the way science is reported,” she says. “It really takes the passage of time to know if something was a breakthrough or wasn’t a breakthrough.”
Producing a broadcast-caliber video every week is expensive — consider the cost of re-reporting each TV news story, plus the content licensing for old clips. (Most of the older content Retro Report uses falls under fair use — and they keep fair use lawyers around, ready to defend that argument — but some of it ends up being paid for.) Philanthropically-backed investigative journalism is not new, but documentary film is a costly addition — and that’s not the extent of Buck and Darnton’s ambition. “Our vision for this project is that we’ll eventually have a living library of modern news events,” says Darnton. “You’ll be able to come to our website and search by theme, by person, by year, and put together different short videos and watch them. It’s almost like a choose-your-own-adventure book.”

Finding a home at the Times

The real coup for Retro Report came early on, when Ann Derry, The New York Times’ editorial director of video, agreed to distribute all of their content. “At that point, the only other outside video content we were running on our website was Op-Docs, which was something I started about four years ago,” Derry says of Retro Report. “I thought it was excellent. I thought, this is what we should be doing, but we’re not doing it. Luckily, they are!” The Times posts new Retro Report content every Monday when it’s in its production season and distributes their videos on Hulu, YouTube, Yahoo, and AOL. From its inception, the Times has added text stories to the Retro Report content, at first as part of the now-defunct Boomer blog, later via beat reporters, and now through former Times columnist Clyde Haberman. Darnton also regularly meets with an editor on the news desk to discuss stories and coverage. Sometimes, as with the story of Vietnam War protesters who stole FBI documents in 1971, the Times adds additional reporting and an original package to a Retro Report story. In a more recent case, reaction to the “superpredators” video ended up in print on the Times opinion pages.
Derry says Retro Report videos are “shockingly popular” and are consistently among the most-watched pieces of video content at the Times. “Everyone says to me: When are we going to find another Retro Report?” she says. Times executive editor Jill Abramson has often said she believes it’s the Times’ responsibility to tell “the story behind the story.” Retro Report, Derry says, accomplishes that mission in a visually compelling and powerful way. “If you say journalism is the first draft of history, this is like the third draft of history. You see how it’s reported, what the first draft was, and then you see what was really going on. We learn more about the story and/or you learn the effects, on social policy or politics,” she says. Since bringing in Retro Report, the Times has added a variety of outside video content producers to its roster, including a series on skiing with Teton Gravity Research, car reviews with Tom Volk and interviews with women entrepreneurs in a collaboration with StoryExchange. “We’re acting in a very mini way like a television network,” says Derry. “Most television networks don’t produce all their own programming in house. They may produce some or none of it, and they certainly go to outside people.” The Times’ strategy for video was further elucidated last week at the Times’ Digital NewFronts presentation. Rebecca Howard, general manager of video production, announced Times Video at the event, a newly designed hub for the paper’s ever-expanding video content offerings. She underscored how the Times plans to incorporate its existing star columnists and reporters into its video strategy, while also continuing to seek out partnerships outside the paper. For example, the Times has entered into a new partnership with Vimeo with a video series on “adventurous eating” called The Perennial Plate. The Times is training more of its journalists to shoot iPhone video, but the overall strategy seems focused on video with a more documentary feel, production that reflects the core values of Times journalism — quality, character, originality, and wit, according to CEO Mark Thompson. “In the last year and a half, there’s been a whole anti-short-web-video thing circulating, saying people watch much longer content on the web if it’s good enough,” Derry says. “Retro pretty much bears that out.” Around the same time that Buck was preparing to launch Retro Report, he was inspired by a Nieman Lab story in which Megan Garber wrote: “What if we had an outlet dedicated to continuity journalism — a news organization whose sole purpose was to follow up on stories whose sheer magnitude precludes them from ongoing treatment by our existing media outlets?” Retro Report accomplishes that goal by bringing up long-forgotten controversies, and then satisfying the desire to know what’s happened in the intervening years. In doing so, it plays into an important dynamic of digital audience that we’ve learned from BuzzFeed and its ilk: Nostalgia is a powerful driver of eyeballs online. Says Buck: “It scratches an itch.”
News broadcast image of J. Edgar Hoover via Retro Report.

Amazon Brings Its Videos to the iPad


This post is by from AllThingsD » Peter Kafka


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Amazon has been ramping up its digital video store for years. But up until now it hasn’t been able to get the videos it rents and sells onto the iPad.

Now it can: The “Amazon Instant Video” player is available on iTunes for free.

The app won’t work on iPhones, but other than that, it is basically an analog of Amazon’s iOS Kindle apps: You can use it to access videos you’ve bought or rented from Amazon’s store, but you can’t actually buy or rent the content directly from the app. (For more on this, review last year’s changes to Apple’s iTunes rules.)

So this won’t help Amazon do much to market its offerings, but it adds obvious value for its existing consumers. (Via 9to5 Mac.)

 

Amazon Brings Its Videos to the iPad


This post is by from AllThingsD » Peter Kafka


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Amazon has been ramping up its digital video store for years. But until now it hasn’t been able to get the videos it rents and sells onto the iPad.

Now it can: The “Amazon Instant Video” player is available on iTunes for free.

The app won’t work on iPhones, but other than that, it is basically an analog of Amazon’s iOS Kindle apps: You can use it to access videos you’ve bought or rented from Amazon’s store, but you can’t actually buy or rent the content directly from the app. (For more on this, review last year’s changes to Apple’s iTunes rules.)

So this won’t help Amazon do much to market its offerings, but it adds obvious value for its existing consumers. (Via 9to5 Mac.)

 

Fox’s New Girl gets free, early debut online


This post is by from Video


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




In a somewhat uncharacteristic move, Fox has released one of its new fall shows early on the iTunes Store. You can now download the full pilot episode of Fox’s New Girl, a half-hour comedy starring Zooey Deschanel, for free with a U.S. iTunes account.

It’s a bit of a surprise, because Fox is one of the networks that seems most interested in blocking or at least delaying the online presence of its content, and also because pre-releasing broadcast shows on iTunes is extremely rare. In fact, Fox calls it the “first ever network TV show available on iTunes before its broadcast premiere.” So what’s behind this exception to Fox’s usual way of doing things?

Considering that New Girl promotional material to date hasn’t really seemed to be able to pin down what to expect from the show, it seems like Fox is just trying to see if it might be possible to drum up some interest through other means. The show bets heavily on star Deschanel (whose previous work has mostly been in big screen hits like (500) Days of Summer), but based on early reviews, it doesn’t offer up all that much beyond your standard sitcom fare.

While iTunes is the first place you can check out the show, Variety reports it will also be appearing on platforms like Hulu, Fox.com, cable VOD and Hello Giggles, a blog endorsed by Deschanel, prior to its broadcast debut.

That kind of scattershot approach might signal desperation from Fox, which likely invested a lot in the show, but ultimately didn’t really meet its expectations and might have a hard time with broadcast audiences. Fox’s Lone Star, a series with lots of hype last year, was similarly previewed and suffered an early death despite early digital sneak peeks.

Since an HD or SD version of New Girl is only a free download away, though, you might as well judge for yourself whether Fox is pursuing a lost cause or doing something genuinely interesting with this pre-broadcast release, and then let us know what you think in the comments.

Related research and analysis from GigaOM Pro:
Subscriber content. Sign up for a free trial.