What’s it like to cover a political convention for a local TV audience? Steve Sweitzer, news operations manager at WISH-TV in Indianapolis, took a little time between live shots and feeds at this summer’s conventions to lift the curtain a little, posting a series of vlogs on his station’s Web site.
Who knew that in addition to coping with layers of security at the Republican convention in St. Paul, Minn., you also had to avoid running afoul of the “wireless police“? Who knew that at the Democratic convention in Denver, not even CBS’s “magic bus” could cut through the chaos, or improve the working conditions?
Sweitzer says he’s not proud of the technical quality of the videos, but they weren’t that hard to produce:
They were shot with a Flip Video camera and edited in iMovie (often while riding in cabs) and then e-mailed back to the station. I just used the mic in my MacBook to record the narration. We were too busy to actually write a script so I’d cut together some sequences and then just talk about them while the video played.
We’ve long encouraged stations to produce “Web extra” videos to supplement their online offerings. These “behind the scenes” videos from WISH-TV give users more than they can get from TV–and that’s a good thing. Are they perfect? Not hardly. But remember, the perfect is the enemy of the good. Don’t wait for the “Goldilocks zone” (where everything is “just right”). Sometimes “good enough” really IS good enough.