Can MMJs Do Serious Investigative Stories?

Posted February 01, 2020
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While many TV networks and local TV news stations have begrudgtingly accepted both MMJs (or VJs or MoJo), they most often ghettoize their work and potential.

They are fine for 'some kinds of stories'.

Shooting with an iPhone is OK 'in a crunch when you can't get a crew'.

Stuff like that.

About a year ago, Spectrum1 in Los Angeles was launched. All MMJ, all the time, and pretty much all iPhone all the time.

Yesterday, I got a story from LA MMJ Natalie Brunell.

It's a full blown, full bore serious piece of investigative journalism. The kind of thing you might see on 60 Minutes. Except 60-Minutes takes 3 or 4 months to produce a story like this, with a crew or two, a producer, an AP, a researcher, a reporter and editor and a lot of money spent.

Natalie did all of this on her own, using only an iPhone and in a few days.

This the future not just of local news in LA, which it very clearly is, but of television journalism worldwide.

This should clearly answer the question - Can an MMJ do qualty investigative journalism?

Clearly, the answer is, you bet. 


I wanted to add a few notes from Natalie on this.  


Shooting time was 4 hours total, spread over two days.

Research took place over a week.

Here are some of her own comments on the process:

the iPhone 11 is what I use and I believe it has some sort of stabilization in it! I anchored my elbows on a desk for the long interview (did the same with Arnold Schwarzenegger last week!  Originally we thought the piece would be 6-7 minutes but we had to add a lot of statements and wanted to be thorough since the piece has so many nuances and the dealer himself has a lot of history (with suing the automaker etc). There was never really an issue of “its too long” which was really liberating. The only other tools I used are the lavalier microphone with a Rode attachment to get the sound.


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