Whatever happened to audio?

In television, sound is the other half of the picture. No matter how gorgeous your video is, its impact depends in part on the quality of the audio. Lousy sound can ruin even the strongest pictures. So if sound is so important, why aren’t more students being taught the basics of audio production? The question comes …

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NPR journalists talk audio slide shows

Few will argue with the statement that NPR journalists know how to use audio, so it’s no surprise that when they’re producing audio slide shows, they focus on sounds before pictures. Producer Andrea Hsu has worked on multiple projects and developed her own technique. “I took photos of everything and then figured out what fit …

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Ten tips for recording audio interviews by phone

Sometimes you’re just stuck conducting an interview by phone.  Many of the same rules of interviewing apply, but if you want to use the audio for a story, you’ll need to handle some aspects of the the conversation a little differently. 1.  First, be sure the person you’re interviewing knows you’re recording the conversation.  In …

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How to sound more conversational

I’ve always been a huge Robert Krulwich fan. His stories on NPR and ABC News break through the standard news blather thanks in part to his memorable delivery. Unlike so many reporters who tend to “announce” their scripts, Krulwich just talks, or at least that’s how it appears to the listener. But don’t be fooled. …

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Lessons from a viral video

So, how do you get more than 5 million people to watch your story?  Take a look. 1. The content is compelling.  Many people, including me, have entered into this debate and the student producer, Patrick Romero, used a simple point-counterpoint approach to shaping the story. 2.  The audio is audible.  If you read Advancing …

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Audio slide shows with Final Cut Pro

For years, Soundslides has set the standard for audio slide shows, but it’s certainly not the only option.  Andrew Lih, who teaches at USC, says he’s been using Final Cut Pro (FCP) to teach student journalists the same principles.  He recently posted the following on the Facebook page for educators in the Online News Association: …

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College radio in an Internet world

Is your campus radio station threatened? A couple of high-profile cases lately have spotlighted what some college radio supporters call a trend of universities selling their FM licenses and moving their campus stations online. The most recent case involves Duquesne, which sold the license for WDUQ to a community radio station in Pittsburgh and laid …

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Natural sounding storytelling

It’s one of the trickiest things about delivering a broadcast story:  You have to practice sounding natural. Media consultant Joanne Stevens says on the RTDNA website that the trick is to think about “cognitive chunks.”  According to Stevens, you should be deliver your copy as chunks of related information. Here are her examples: Example 1: …

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How to breathe more quietly

When you record narration for a multimedia story, do you sometimes hear yourself gasping between phrases or sentences? Those audible intakes of air can be a distraction for the audience and can also make you sound nervous, undercutting your credibility. What’s the solution? It depends in part on the cause. Some people only breathe audibly …

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