BBC, Mojo, iPhone, Video Journalist

The BBC Goes to iPhone Video - sort of

Posted May 31, 2018
Share To


News today from the Biting The Hand That Feeds You Department.

Full Disclosure:  I was hired by The BBC to convert their news operation from conventional crews to VJ in 2000. I spent 5 years there. I met my wife there.  So I hold no animus against The BBC. On the contrary, I owe them a great deal.

So, now I report a kind of mixed bag our of The Beeb.

It seems they are going to embrace shooting on iPhones in an experimentlal, toe in the water kind of way.

For the next three months, they are going to have 15 of their most professional camera crews shoot with smart phones instead of their giant chairopractor friendly cameras.

This is a good thing.

The program was entirely voluntary.

Also a good thing.


First, they are also going to allow the crews to continue to carry their old, giant, conventional cameras with them 'just in case they feel like they need them'.  This is like entering a 12-step program, but allowing the participants to carry a fifth of Johnny Walker Black, 'just in case they feel they need it'.

Also, if they have to schlep the big rigs with them everywhere they go, not to mention the attendant giant tripods, cables, batteries and God only knows what, then what is the bloody point (as we say at The BBC). The whole thing is kind of self-defeating.

ALSO - for those of you who are regular readers - as you know, the whole idea of the VJ concept is that the journalist shoots and cuts their own stuff.  You know, the way a print journalist writes their own stuff or a radio journalist records their own stuff.

Liberate the camera men and women.

Give them the phones but let THEM report.

Trust me, they are most often better and smarter than the on air reporters.

Anyway, let's see what happens. 

Better a little bit of something than a lot of nothing.



Recent Posts

The world of television before cable had been limited to 3 networks and a handful of local TV stations. But the advent of cable meant that suddenly there were 60, 70 soon to be 100 or more new channels. And all of those channels needed content. But where were they going to get it from? A huge market for content had just opened up.

Q: What do TV news and Netflix have in common? A: They both appear on the same screen. They both tell stories.

This morning, I went out early to buy my copy of the weekend FT — a great newspaper, by the way. I was a bit surprised to see that my regular newsstand, on 6th Avenue and 55th Street, had exactly 3 newspapers for sale — one copy of Baron’s and two copies of The New York Post. That was it. No FT, no NY Times, no Washington Post, no… nothing.

Share Page on: