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Tuesday, 27 November 2012

5 News Review and Analysis

Top of today's bulletin was the continuing floods. This was a repeat of yesterday, where the floods dominated around 11 minutes of yesterday's 5 o'clock bulletin, and was followed by a Flood Special at 6:30.
It was great to see a quote from David Cameron in the headlines for the flood story, and the fact he was filmed beside a river was great.
The norovirus headline had no real problems and is somethintg that channel 5's audience would likely be itnerested in.
The decision to put a still image of Nadine Dorries in the headlines was an odd decision, mainly because the story didn't have much depth when it happened. I imagine it was mainly because she attracts a lot of attention right now.
The 'Sports Personality of the Year headline was fine, although I was unsure of the decision to have a cliff hanger in the headlines, although I can see how that sort of style would appeal to the 5 News target audience.

The link to the first flood story was particularly long, and I felt some of the information could have instead been used in the news package, or said by the reporter during the live OB.
It then through to a Live OB with a reporter standing in front of an ambulance. I've noticed that many live obs are used for the stories. There were 3 for the floods yesterday, and 2 today. On top of this there were others including the Nadine Dorries piece.
The vox pops in this were fine, as these were people that were directly affected by the floods. It's a story almost completely about people, and the news package reflected that.

The graphics in the flood package, showing the UK was fine, and provided decent information, it was the same graphic that was used yesterday but with updated stats which I thought was good for regular viewers.

Going back to the presenter allowed a smooth transition to the second live OB, which then lead to the second package which I thought was well done. I enjoyed the interview with the man through his upstairs window. It was a technique which emphasised his unlucky position, although I'm interested to know how they managed to get great sound, I would imagine he was wearing a radio mic to get the good quality.

The norovirus was a solid report, although I wasn't too keen on the opening shot(which was strangely also the final shot) mainly because of the music that was in the background. I assume it was a way of creating natural sound, but just seemed to be an odd inclusion.
The graphic was good, I thought it was a good use of the still image of doctors, and placing the information on the paper was a creative way to display the stats.

The eon oov was fine, the story was put across quickly and with ok pictures. But I don't really remember much about it, which could suggest it was an easily forgettable story, although it might be of more interest to your audience.

The Nadine Dorries news piece was an odd one. There was a mini oov which was just the still shot of nadine, followed by a short 30-60 second live OB from Westminster. The story didn't have much to it, and could easily have been dropped as the OB didn't provide much to the story. It could have just been an oov or dropped altogether.

The 'coming uo...' was good, and is something similar to what we do for our news broadcast, to try and wake up the audience and let them know that their are lighter stories still to come. Although I suppose the channel 5 'coming up' serves a slightly different purpose, as it has to convince the audience to stick around through the adverts, and has to entice them to return.

The story about the ex-palestine president Yasser Arafat was something that many people would have interest in, in terms of an international story.
I think the footage taken from the Al Jazeera documentary added a lot to the story, and provided some good natural sound. The archive footage was also good and helped fill out the piece for something which would otherwise struggle visually. The grags were fine, of the journalisrt and the scientist, and gave decent quotes.

The coronation street package had a good opening line 'Millions grew up watching him', and yet it had a shot a family watching on, instead of a shot of a large group of people which I felt would have been more appropriate.
The style choice of having reporters in shot for most of the interviews is an interesting one. I find it slightly odd, but may be because I've never tried it while reporting. It seems to take up room that doesn't need taking up, but as an editorial decision, I assume that theirs a good reason, possibly to appeal to the target audience. The interviews were relevant and had recognisable faces.

The crane fire oov was a bit of a strange one, it was definately interesting, I just wondered what the alternatives were.

Sports Personality of the Year had a good opening, with footage from BBC and Channel 4 to illustrate the nominees, and they were all shown in a good space of time, and I felt the music did a good job of creating that slightly upbeat feel, awards are to celebrated after all. It was good that both Chris Hoy and Ellie Simmonds were interviewed beside the sport that they're known for. Chris had bikes in the background, while Ellie was next to a swimming pool. It was also a nice touch to include the current odds of who would win, it's genuinly of interest, and also linked nicely to the vox pops and athelete predictions.
I was a bit unsure of the vox pops, it seemed as though they were there to fill time, I can understand the desire to include some 'regular people' opinions for this sort of story, but seemed odd to go from that to the athelete's opinions.Not sure if both were needed, although their was no real problem with having both.

The coming up to end the news broadcast made sense, considering their is another news broadcast at 6:30, and it was good that fresh stories were showcased. And things like 'and I'll be quizzing Nigel Farage' made me want to tune in again.

Notes on Monday's bulletin
The flood package from Simon Lane, which had a misted lens throughout. It was a shame that he had that, but I understand why the editorial decision was made to keep the package into the bulletin. It was a strong piece that fitted well with the top news of the bulletin, and could also be defended by it's surrounding of high water.

The UKIP story had some of the same shots (at least 3) at the beginning and end of the package. The black corners at the start of the package was odd, and made things seem very eerie, I didn't really understand what it was for, except possibly to add some drama.
I didn't really like that a quote was lifted from the Daily Telegraph for the story, although I can understand if it was a last resort, such as the reporterer being unable to get hold of the Rotheram parents. The Nigel Farage grab was good, but it is to be expected as he is quite a good speaker.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Crime - Court Reporting

Court reporting can be a great way to get good stories, and is a perfect example of potential great journalism. However, there are guidelines that you need to follow strictly, to avoid breaking any laws.

Prejudice and contempt are two big dangers when court reporting. You need to be careful of publishing facts or allegations that could lead to unfairness at a later stage in a court case. You also need to be careful of contested and uncontested facts. You should only publish uncontested facts, these are facts that can't be argued(usually meaning they've been stated in court by the judge etc...) These facts can't be argued as untrue.

Their certain points that you should (and in some cases 'can') mention when covering a court story. 
Name of the defendant
Their age
Name of the court
What they've been charged with(or close summary of the charges)
Dare and place of next hearing.

You can say about bail applications, but can't report the argument about it in court. You can only say if it's been granted or not. 

Privilege is a form of protection for journalists and can come from court and the House of Commons. You can usually report defamatory statements if they have been said in the House of Commons.
To keep the privilege from court, you need to be fast, fair and accurate in your reporting.

Privilege allows us as journalists top write or broadcast material which may be defamatory, or untrue, or even both at the same time. it gives us protection from being sued.

Their are 2 types of privilege - Absolute and qualified.

Qualified privilege
Reports need to be Fast, Accurate and Fair.
Without malice
On a matter of public concern (public interest)
- Public forums/meetings are covered by qualified privilege. They are not absolute, as you need to have the other side of the story to make it fair and keep the protection.
Press conferences are public meetings(Lords 2000). Written handouts are covered, and risks of live broadcasting (eg- trying to name someone etc...) should be considered.

Two levels of Qualified Privilege
1 - With or 'subject to'
Explanation or contradiction. Eg - local council committees, employment tribunals.
2 - Without
Explanation or contradiction.

Presenting Sportsweek

WINOL 14/11/2012

A good week for stories, just technical things that still need working out, and also the amount of knowledge and research you have for your stories. You should have more interest in them, and spend more time on them. Also written stories need to be coming in more frequently

Individual Feedback

The headlines were pretty good this week. Some of the more visually interesting headlines so far this semester which is a good sign.

I really liked this package. I asked you to look on Youtube to find some footage of ford striking that we could use, and you did that within a few hours, and it looked great at the start of the package.You also did great to get an interview with Steve Brine on Tuesday afternoon, and it helped lift your package. Without the strike footage, you would have struggled visually so if you want to continue with this story, you will need to continue to think of creative ways to carry your package visually.

Visually it was a difficult package, budget cuts are hard to visualise, but the archive footage was put to good us, except for the shot of the council building. If it's something you can film yourself, then there is no reason to use archive footage of it, especially when your filming of it would look better. You got the right interviews, which had opposing ideas,

A very solid package. Your profiles are now done, and I think you did a great job, and it's been rgeat to know I could rely on you each week. You seem to always have a technical problem when interviewing George Hollingberry, this time it was the colouring/lighting, but I think you did a good job of saving it, and it ended up not looking too bad. You also kept the text in the graphics up longer after feedback from the last one, which was a lot better. The sign off was very good as well, and you made the fact you were in London a big thing, which was great.

I liked the PTC at the start of the package, and thought the shot leading into the Thornber interview was very good. The cutaways and other shots in the package were good, making the most of the wind turbines, all relevant, and they're just visually interesting. A good package that we should definitely keep track of.

Your voice over still doesn't sound right. I'm not sure what it is, maybe you're speaking too close to the mic? You had the chainsaw at the beginning, and I'm sure you agree that it looked great at the start of your package. Your PTC was fine, but seemed out of focus.
The Uldduz part of the package was fine, but obviously carried the usual problems of skype calls. The cutaways that you used during that part were way too short and needed to be longer, they disappeared within seconds.

Good to get the mug shot, and also the reconstruction added something different to the package. Your becoming very good at these now, this was a very nice court story.

Even though your package didn't work out, you were still able to get me multiple oovs that I could use which I was grateful for, because we were in need of some oovs. Although if you find out soon enough that your story is falling through, you should try and take on another story for a package.

I was happy to have this package in the bulletin, I expected it to be in the sports part of the bulletin, but when I found out it wasn't, I was happy tot ry and find room to squeeze it in. I really liked it. A nice light way to follow on from the sport.

It was a good 'and finally', but your picture quality was very poor, and on another day i might have spiked it. However, we worked on trying to improve the colour and general quality which helped a bit, but was a bit grainy. You did a good job to tell the story, and the coming up you did was perfect, although it unfortunately had to be dropped in post-production because of timing restraints.

You tried to get your package to work this week, but it really needed that interview to be able to get into the bulletin, and with us back to so many reporters  you really need to fight and go the extra distance to push your story into the bulletin. Not a bad week, but just need to have a bit more confidence to go that extra mile for your story.

I was disappointed that you came to the news meeting with basically nothing, that's never really acceptable. You should have a story, even if it means going off of your patch.

I know your story was the same as Amy's, but you should still have back-up stories, even if they're not always on your patch. You got given a different story late on Monday, and had to go to a meeting for it. But didn't, so theirs no real excuse for not having the story. You needed to work hard this week, I'm pretty disappointed that you didn't.

Your package wasn't terrible this week, it was just way too much of a promo piece, I dropped it into an oov, but it eventually got cut in post-production for timing reasons. Filming was fine, just remember to radio mic someone if you decide to film them from more of a distance, and if you do that, they should ideally be actually doing something instead of just sitting around.

Notes for next week

30 Second Pitch
This Monday, in the news conference, I'm going to be testing out something new, inspired by the talk from Claudia Murg. You will each get 30 seconds where you should be able to convey all of your story, including the top line, who you're speaking to, who it affects, what shots you plan to have, and some general facts about the story. I will explain it in some more detail on Monday. But essentially your story should be heavily researched, and you should be able to talk about it solidly for 30 seconds(which will be a way of knowing if you've just lifted it from the daily echo or actually put some work into it).

Camera zooms are now banned
You've been told in the past by Angus that the camera shots should reflect what the human eye does, and our eyes cannot zoom unfortunately. Also it's normally a messy shot when you use a zoom, and it can be difficult to get a good speed. It also usually means that you don't end up holding shots for long enough so this should hopefully help. You can still do pans etc... but if you want to move closer onto something, you should do it through a sequence. This will look much cleaner, and help you in the edit.
The only zooms allowed in this upcoming week are for still images.

Earlier starts on Wednesdays
On Wednesday, most reporters weren't in until 10/10:30 which isn't acceptable. Nobody had a finished package, and I know that because i didn't sign off any of them, which means they're not done. And if you don't come in until that late, it means everything clogs up. Production are in for 9am on Wednesday, and so should the reporters. It's not fair that we slow down the production team by coming in more than an hour later than you should be.

Voiceover Audio
The original plan was to use the sound booth that Angus has mentioned for a couple of weeks. Me and Graham went to get it, but it turns out we need training. So we tried a couple of areas, and this week we settled for the studio, and wrapping the curtain around you. It sounded better this week, and more consistent. But I don't think it will be the permanent solution, but it is something we can discuss on Monday.

The links for your packages need to be in much earlier. Tuesday evening you should at least have a draft handed into the script writer/presenter each week. Your link should also be longer than one sentence. We should have a basic idea of your story even before your package is shown.

WINOL 07/11/2012

A good week considering we were quite short on reporters. We still managed to almost go over 15 minutes which must mean we were still able to produce more than enough content even without all of our news team.

Individual Feedback

US Election In-Studio
Ali did really well here I thought. He made clear exactly what it was about. It was a shame the package wasn't shown beforehand, but was just a lack of communication. Myself and the other editors(particularl Graham the production editor, have agreed to meet for 5 minutes at 1pm every Wednesday to improve communication so close to the bulletin going live.

HPCC Debate
Arguably, I could have given you more time for this to fit in quotes for all the candidates, although i was told this wasn't an issue, and decided that to fit in more content in our show, we'd stick to the slightly shorter time, with less grabs.
Overall the package was good, and made the most of the debate footage that we had, with some good cutaways of the audience.

Ford Update
This wasn't quite as strong as last week in my opinion, but it's great to keep tracking the story, Also this package contained some very good quotes from the UKIP member, and it was good to get him outside the ford factory for the interview. So simple, and yet so effective. Was a nice update, and will be good to see how you continue to develop the story as you become more and more of an expert.

Ash Trees
This was a big story in the week, and is something that people may care about. It was important that you got shots of ash trees, and that's what you did. Your voice over audio was pretty poor again, an it's something you need to improve. The interview was good, got some good quotes. We had to trim some of your PTC because you made a fact that ideally should have been fudged, because it quickly became out of date. But luckily, it wasn't too difficult to take out.

Alton Town
A good package, although you were clearly lacking for shots, a sequence with your interviewee would definitely have helped to get something different visually instead of just the pitch. The statement was also a bt too long. The sign off PTC was very good. A solid package.

Coming Up
The coming up is working very well. But I feel like it needs more of a sting, so that can be something to work on.  I also felt like the graduation piece needed some good NATSOT, it felt too quiet. The football clip had some great natsot that peaked at the end.

The oovs were fine. It was good that we followed up on the fluoride story, because it's come up a few times on WINOL, and the shots did the job. It was also nice to include the bonfire night event. It's very big in Winchester, with thousands going to it every year. It's relevant to our audience, and also looks good. Was also great to have natsot of the flame being lit.

The graduation package had the hat throwing, which was essential. We needed some more vox pops, you had another but said the visual quality was incredibly poor, and it would have been odd to use just the audio. You also need to improve your voiceover audio quality, it was very bad this week. Wasn't the best package ever, but it did the job, n had the important shots.

I really liked this package, it was a nice fluff piece to end with. Considering the lack of shots you had to choose from, I thought you did well visually. The interview was good, and it told a nice story. The PTC was also very good with the moustache.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

WINOL 31/10/2012


This week we introduced 'Coming Up' which appeared midway through the bulletin. We used a bed throughout and a sting at the end. The aim was to refresh the audience, and to let them know that lighter news stories were coming up. This is bulletin places the heavier, political stories at the top to lead it. The 'coming up' injects a fresh bit of life, and shows that there's more to come.

After the sting, we lead into the News Belt. We'll be looking to sort out a bed for the news belt in the near future.

Individual Feedback

HPCC Debate In-Studio
I thought this was really well done. Lou, you were calm and clear about what the debate was all about. A good way to open the bulletin.

You did really well with this story, you told it well, got some good interviews, and when I said to you that it needed balance you were calm in tackling the problem. It's also a good running story that you have it, that you should track for the rest of the year for more developments.

US Storm
We did well to get some good shots of the storm through both fair dealing(being a current event that we were covering) and also images that George was able to get us. We also had an interview with a former student, who is from America, and it gave us the local angle that we needed, and made a really good OOV ACT to break up the bulletin, instead of 'package after package' like last week.

We also did well to use it as a chance to promote our election in a back-anno after the piece.

Car Park Boycott
It was a very dull story, as most car park stories are. But we needed it to bulk up the bulletin, and you delivered it, with balance, and shots of the actual empty car park. You tried to vary your shots and be creative, which is tough with this kind of story, but I think it was fine.

Coming Up
I felt that this worked well, it wakes up the audience, and shows them that theirs more 'interesting' stories to come. We need a new bed, and a good sting to end.

First we had the gold colour oov. This was originally a package, but it was very dull, and when it turned out that you can't see the gold with the human eye, it became even more dull.
The library oov was pretty dull too, but it is something that would interest some of our viewers that live in Winchester, it affects the local area, and is information that some people might find useful.
The Royal mail didn't have amazing pictures, but that doesn't always matter with oovs, aslong as we have something to show. The story will affect many people, and links to the Ford story we covered earlier in the bulletin, and makes it feel more like a connected show, instead of separate entities.

Halloween Safety
This was a news story that didn't give you much to go on. Posters were being made available to tell trick or treaters not to knock on doors if they had the poster on them.
I feel like you did well with this piece, particularly with your opening(including the PTC). You had natural sound, and made the opening couple of shots flow together. The vox pops were fine, and you could have gone down two different routes to try and improve it a bit more. Either by making it even more cheesy, or by going down a slightly more serious route and trying to speak to a police officer.

Pub Bus
A perfect story for an 'and finally...' You told the story ok, but could have used a bit more voiceover to tell the story better, instead of relying too much on the interview. The shots were good, and I liked the sign off at the end.

This Week's WINOL News Bulletin

Sunday, 4 November 2012


Defaming someone is something that journalists need to be very careful of, defame the wrong person and it could cost you a lot of money, but worse than that, it can cost you your career.

However, before you can start to understand defamation, it's important to be able to recognise what is safe, what could be dodgy and what could be defamatory. It goes back to being able to recognise risk.
If you have doubts, you can refer it up, either to your editor or lawyer. It'sd also a good idea to remember 'If in doubt, leave it out'. Balance is important, but it can't really combat defamation.

Defining Defamation
If what you write or broadcast about someone or a company tends to-
- Lower them in estimation of right-thinking people.
- Causes them to be shunned or avoided.
- Disparages them in their business, trade or profession.
- Exposes them to hatred, ridicule or contempt.
Publication + Defamation + Identification = Libel
Defamation via pictures ('picture libel')
Careless use of background shots with voice over can be defamatory.
Eg- Making clear who the defendant is or showing a shop/company that you aren't directly referring to.
People or companies must not be identifiable, particularly when theirs is the potential of defamation.

Reputation and Meaning
Reputation is previous, especially if you are in public life, money or both.
Meaning is interpreted by a 'reasonable man'.
Inference - hazard
Innuendo - hazard
You should assess the whole context.
Libel Defences
- Justification - 'It's true and I can prove it in court'
- Fair Comment - Honestly held opinion based upon facts, or privileged material in public interest.
- Absolute Privilege - Court reporting (have to be in court for the sentencing when reporting it to have the privilege)
- Qualified Privilege - Police quotes, pressers.
Bane and Antidote - Defamation removed by context.
- Apologies and Clarifications
- Reynolds Defence (Includes material being in the public interest, a product of 'responsible journalism' and more)

No Defence
- When you have not checked your facts.
- When you have not 'referred up'.
- When you have not put yourself in the shoes of the person or company you write about.
- Got carried away by a 'spicy' story.
- Not bothered to wait for a lawyers opinion.

Recognise Risk
- Who am I writing about, and could they sue?
- Is what I'm writing potentially defamatory?
- Do I have a defence?
- Lawyers don't mind being asked, so if you're unsure, don't worry about asking them.


Regulations and Codes

It's important to recognise risk. It is a key skill to have in the newsroom. You should get a sense of when you're in danger. However, the Codes of Conduct aren't laws that could see you sent to prison, but they are a set of rules that are in place to try keep journalists regulated away from the law.
The codes fill the space between criminal offences and the right things to do. It covers things that aren't quite covered by the law. It also guides us through ethical issues which affect how far we go to get a story. Such as what practices are legitimate and when different circumstances change how we approach certain situations. It is also important in helping build trust with the public.

There can be a temptation to 'dress up' a story which can occasionally lead to misrepresentation.
A good example is Peter Fincham, a former BBC one boss that quit after a story came out in 2007 that claimed he misrepresented the Queen in a documentary trailer. A sequence was edited to make it suggest that the Queen had stormed out, when she hadn't.

Key areas that the code covers
Ethical behaviour
Fair treatment for privacy
Requirement for accuracy and impartiality
Protecting vulnerable groups (such as children)

Codes of practice
The 3 main codes -
- PCC (Press Complaints Commission) - Newspapers and magazines
- Ofcom - Broadcasters
- BBC - For BBC staff and licence payers

Press Complaints Commission (PCC)
It is a self regulated.

Has a few sanctions, but not many. These include being verbally reprimanded, reported to an editor, asked for a statement to be released.
It can't fine people, or really ask for people to be sacked. This means it has limited power.

It has more power than the PCC, because it can fine people. (It can take upt to around 5% of a company's profit)

Powers includes
- Decision not to repeat programme.
- Corrections or findings must be broadcast.
- Can impose fines - up to 5% revenue.
- Can revoke broadcast licence. (It can licence broadcasters to operate and can also take things off air.)

A good example is the Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand fining a few years ago. The BBC was fined £150,000.

BBC Editorial Guidelines
These guidelines are set by the BBC itself. Being such a big organisation, these regulations set their own expectations of employee's, but are generally not too different from other regulations. Being a publically funded means that it has a few different rules to other brodcasters and news providers.

When would you not adhere to the rules?
Investigative reporting - Such as hiding cameras, or posing as someone else(not a journalist).
Public Interest - The information would have a high value to society.(this could be a possible defence)

The Crown Prosecution Service
Explains when public interest is a valid defence.

Why has regulation been relatively successful in broadcast compared to print journalism?
Broadcast seems to have a much broader audience, and also it means TV shows like the news could be watched by anyway. It's easy to avoid the news in print, because you can either don't buy the newspapers or avoid the news websites. This could arguably make it feel like it has less attention and slightly less responsibility than broadcast.

Regime for broadcast. How might Leveson affect it. Is their a tougher regime for print journalists?
It's very difficult to predict what will come out of the Leveson Inquiry.

NUJ - The National Union of Journalists
It's Code of Conduct is still recognised, but is not as powerful as it once was. Some newspapers used to require journalists to be a member of the NUJ to work for them.
The NUJ is not as concerned about privacy, but protection of sources have more emphasis.

'Honest/Fast, Accurate, Fair' is a good rule to follow.

You should apologise immediately after an error.

You should also remember to differentiate between facts and opinions.