prof. e.

Mass Communication, [multi]media, methodology and much, much more!

Archive for April, 2015

Stop, or I’ll Record

Posted by prof e on April 17, 2015

StopCSU-Pueblo  MCCNM alum Daneya Esgar (class of 2001) is co-sponsoring legislation before the Colorado state legislature. Before becoming a State Representative, Esgar was a news producer for local affiliate KOAA-TV. In her new role Esgar is promoting legislation that expand protection for citizen journalists and ordinary citizens who may find themselves eye witnesses to law enforcement agencies working in the local community.

HB 15-1290 “would allow a civil suit against a law enforcement agency if an officer seizes or destroys a recording without a person’s consent, possibly resulting in damages of up to $15,000.” Recent incidents in the news have demonstrated the value of civilian video recordings that have brought to light misbehavior by law enforcement personnel.

Body cameras on officers are becoming the new norm and many expect this change to have a positive effect. Now, with nearly every citizen having the ability to record and broadcast (in near real time) video from the scene of the incident, we may have even more evidence of wrongdoing and…perhaps more important…incentive to do the right thing in the first place.

Of course one downside is the loss of privacy that we all will experience as the “surveillance state” expands.


Posted in 1st amendment, ethics, journalism, politics, regulation | Leave a Comment »

What happened in Vegas…

Posted by prof e on April 14, 2015

Many companies were demonstrating drone technology

Drone demo on the exhibit floor

Actually, it’s still happening. It’s the annual convention of the National Association of Broadcasters and it will be continuing through Thursday. According to their press release, “With more than 98,000 attendees from 150 countries and 1,700+ exhibitors, NAB Show is the ultimate marketplace for digital media and entertainment.” Conveniently for academics, the Broadcast Education Association annual convention runs concurrently and overlaps the NAB for a few days.

I, along with several of my colleagues from CSU-Pueblo, made presentations, attended sessions and workshops, and toured the more than 1 million square feet of exhibit space. Of course I didn’t see it all. Even if I had been there for the entire 4-day run I would have had a hard time seeing all of the booths, exhibits, and displays.

But I can tell you one thing…in just a few hours today I saw more pixels than some people see in a lifetime. There were 4K displays everywhere, and quite a few 8K displays as well. Monitor walls stretched from floor to ceiling, and there were $50,000 digital cinema cameras everywhere you looked. Companies (including: Adobe, Arri, Canon, Dolby Laboratories, GoPro,  Red Digital Cinema, Sony, and Zacuto, just to name a few) were showing off the latest and greatest hardware and, perhaps more important, software used by radio and TV broadcasters and media content producers. One of the highlights this year is the aerial robotics and done pavilion. Other buzz words for 2015 include UHD (Ultra High Definition), ATSC 3.0, Virtual Reality, and SVOD (Subscription Video On Demand, e.g. Netflix and Hulu+).

So, what was my ah-ha moment? During a State of the Industry report one of the speakers made the point that the media production/distribution industry was moving from hardware to software. More and more of the tools that we use to acquire, edit, manage, and distribute content are primarily software tools. Once media content is digital, software allows us to do any number of things to it in the process of making it available to our intended audience. The future of media production will be less about engineering breakthroughs and more about software development. And in the future most of our media and software will live in the cloud. It’s an exciting time to be in this business.

Posted in media industry, new media, radio, tv | Leave a Comment »

Marketing Missteps Turn Into PR Pratfalls

Posted by prof e on April 2, 2015

Companies take risks and try new things. Sometimes they work, and other times…well, let’s just say they sometimes fail to produce the intended result. Starbuck’s “Race Together” campaign is just one of the most recent examples of a well-intended effort that backfired when consumers used social media to push back. Interactivity is one of the things that makes social media so incredibly powerful and valuable. But like any powerful force, if it gets out of control (which it so frequently does) it can wreak havoc.

Mae Anderson, of the Associated Press, makes the point that this is not unique to the coffee giant. Plenty of other marketing blunders have mushroomed into PR blunders when corporations lose control of their message in social media spaces. Coke, the Gap, Lululemon, and even J.P. Morgan have felt the wrath of consumers who didn’t like the: new taste, new logo, new transparency, or lack thereof.

In another AP news article the Starbucks campaign was defended as simply a failed attempt to try to do the right thing.

At its annual meeting, Schultz said he didn’t think Starbucks would solve the country’s “centuries old problems of racism” but that he thinks it can make a difference. He said workers don’t have to participate, and that stores will make customers another drink or cover up cups if they don’t like the message. “This is not a marketing or P.R. exercise,” Schultz said.

Even if we take their word for it and accept that they did not intend for this to be a marketing or PR exercise…it is clear that it has become exactly that.

Posted in advertising, PR | Leave a Comment »