Friday, December 25, 2009

One Man Band

It's a term used in music to describe someone who plays multiple instruments and used in television to describe someone who does a production by himself.

In this case, it's both — though I got help from some recorded drum loops and overdubbed bass for this one.

Note that this was shot on a consumer camera in about 30 minutes and does not reflect the quality of my professional work.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Dusted Off The Camera

And went to take some photographs. Tampa Bay Downs, the local horse racing track, has opened for the season. I'm not a betting man but I occasionally gamble a gallon or two of gas on whether I can capture the action at the track.

Then on the way home I stopped and squeezed off a few shots in downtown Tampa.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


And a little fun on Sony Acid (the music software not the LSD). The sound quality from my digital piano could be better. So could the sound quality from my playing.

Monday, December 07, 2009

A Walk Among the Tombstones

A cliche to be sure but what is a cliche but a well-said phrase that we are too lazy to restate? The tombstones in question here are sometimes cracked, broken and even scattered. Tampa's first mayor is among the city's luminaries buried in Oaklawn cemetery.

You can see a slide show of more images on my photo blog, to which I send you not to drive up its traffic but because its format lets me display larger images.

Outsourced Sports

WPTV-TV in West Palm Beach has canned its sports staff and handed its sports coverage to a local radio station, according to the Palm Beach Post.

Axing sports departments was once the province of bottom-feeding stations throwing in the towel on a segment of the audience it was never going to reach. But West Palm's NBC affiliate is a long-time powerhouse in that market, just like WFLA in Tampa was when it decided it could get by with just one on-air sports anchor. Instead of outsourcing to a radio station, WFLA shares sports reporters with the Tampa Tribune — which, like WFLA, is owned by Media General.

WFLA does still have a sports photographer. The Post article does not explain how a radio station is going to put together video highlights and stories or how a guy whose afternoon drive radio show begins at 4 o'clock will do TV segments at 5 and 6.

Not that it matters. One reader comment to the WPTV story sums up a growing attitude toward sports among many stations: "nothing personal... but ch 5’s sports was a minute or two of headlines... my 8 yr old could do it and for $100 a week... welcome to the new economy."

The TV station probably figured that no one was watching that "minute or two of headlines" so why not put someone on who will promote his appearance on the radio all afternoon. Click here to see a clip of the radio host Even Cohen who will now tackle TV duties.

Friday, December 04, 2009

We Got That B-Roll!

This will make more sense — and be funnier — if you have worked in television. But maybe not so give it a try for ten seconds. If you hate it, I'll refund your purchase price.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Murdoch: Media Must Get Online Readers to Pay

More than a decade after the term was coined, tradition media have not learned how to avoid becoming roadkill on the "Information Superhighway." The question facing journalism in a free market is how to make enough money from it to pay the people who produce it.

"Technology makes it cheap and easy to distribute news for anyone with Internet access," says media mogul Rupert Murdoch. "But producing journalism is expensive."

The obvious solution, he says, is to force readers of online news sites to pay for the privilege. That works for entities such as the Wall Street Journal, which Murdoch now owns, but the WSJ generates content for which readers will pay a premium. The stories you read there aren't available anywhere else.

How many other media outlets can say that? Even the WSJ, which once charged for access to all of its content, now gives a lot of it away for free. People can find most stories in too many places for any of them to be able to charge money for them.

Ads don't seem to be enough. People who are willing to let commercials interrupt their TV viewing get offended when ads pop up in front of what they're reading online. But just because ad revenue from websites don't make up for what newspapers and TV stations have lost from tradition ads doesn't mean that an ad-supported model won't work for a strictly web-based outlet.

Eventually, some enterprising reporters — in more than one sense of the word — will come together to form cooperatives that will take advantage of the cheap distribution channels now available without any of the baggage (printing presses, delivery trucks, broadcast TV towers and too many middle managers) that are sinking traditional media.