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The Sun launches ‘multimedia studio’ with video webchat

January 24th, 2013 | No Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting, Multimedia

Sun webchat

The Sun has launched a new “multimedia studio”, which it used this week to host a video webchat with actor and politician Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The studio will not be in full-time use until February, but Schwarzenegger helped open the studio on Tuesday (22 January).

The 30 minute webchat used the Showcaster platform to provide live video from their new studio, alongside a chatbox in which users could post questions. The questions were moderated and put to Schwarzenegger by showbiz editor Gordon Smart.

A video of the interview was then posted on the Sun’s online ‘showbiz’ section, accompanied by a write-up of the interview focusing on the show-business related aspects of his answers.

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Olympic figures: BBC reports 12m video views via mobile

August 13th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting, Traffic

The BBC has revealed the figures showing the number of people consuming Olympics news across four platforms: desktop, tablet, mobile and television.

The BBC Internet blog reports that the broadcaster saw 9.2 million browsers to its mobile site and iPhone and Android Olympics app over the course of the Games.

The post also reveals the BBC clocked up more than 2.3 million browsers using tablets.

Writing on the blog, Cait O’Riorda, head of product, BBC Sport and London 2012, said:

Consumption of video content on mobile has been perhaps the key takeaway from the two weeks: we saw 12 million requests for video on mobile across the whole of the Games.

Overall the broadcaster had “106 million requests for BBC Olympic video content across all online platforms”.

The blog post has several interesting graphics, including one to demonstrate how people used each of the four platforms at different times of the day.

The key findings are:

  • PC usage maxes out during the week at lunchtime and during mid-afternoon peak Team GB moments
  • Mobile takes over around 6pm as people leave the office but still want to keep up to date with the latest action
  • Tablet usage reaches a peak at around 9pm: people using them as a second screen experience as they watch the Games on their TVs, and also as they continue to watch in bed

The blog also reports that the video “chapter-marking feature, enabling audiences to go back to key event moments instantly, received an average 1.5 million clicks per day. The chapter marker for Bolt’s 100m final win was clicked on more than 13,000 times”.

The most-watched livestream of the Games was the tennis singles finals. There were 820,000 requests for live video of the matches that saw Serena Williams and Andy Murray take gold.

O’Riorda states in the post:

The peak audiences for Team GB’s medal moments were bigger than anything we’ve ever seen. Over a 24 hour period on the busiest Olympic days, Olympic traffic to bbc.co.uk exceeded that for the entire BBC coverage of FIFA World Cup 2010 games. On the busiest day, the BBC delivered 2.8 petabytes, with the peak traffic moment occurring when Bradley Wiggins won gold and we shifted 700 Gb/s.

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MSN UK study release: Quarter of respondents ‘overwhelmed by the volume of news each day’

MSN UK recently commissioned a survey of 2,000 people (carried out by OnePoll) which looks at audience behaviour in certain news situations, as part of its Best of Now marketing campaign.

The findings including looking at the sources people turn to for breaking news coverage. This found that the majority (40 per cent) of respondents (who were able to select more than one answer), chose online news sites as their source. This was followed by newspapers with 30 per cent and social media with 20 per cent of respondents.

The survey also asked what news sources were most trusted by respondents, which saw broadcast television and radio come top with 43 per cent, followed by online news sites with 19 per cent, newspapers with 15 per cent and magazines with 9.1 per cent. Social networks were named as most trusted by just under five per cent.

A quarter of respondents highlighted in the survey that they can be “overwhelmed by the volume of news each day and demand quality, not quantity”, according to a press release. And when it comes to time spent consuming news, with the survey finding that on average 10 years ago respondents felt they would spend around 10 minutes a day consuming news, compared to an average of 15 minutes today.

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Audio: voices of the gentlemen (and ladies) of the press

Next Friday, 8 June 2012, I am going to cycle alone and unsupported 1400km from my home town in Brighton to Oslo Norway to raise money for the Journalists’ Charity. I aim to complete the journey in 11 days.

The Journalists’ Charity used to be called the Newspaper Press Fund. In 2004, the BBC Radio 4 programme The Time of My Life visited one of its care homes and interviewed some of its former Fleet Street residents. The charity kindly lent me a cassette recording of the show and I have converted it to digital for your listening pleasure below.

I think you will agree it’s a delightful piece. And I am hoping it will finally convince you all that this is a worthwhile cause (because frankly raising money so far has been like getting blood out of a stone!)

So, if you haven’t already sponsored me, please do so here. I aim to raise £1,000 and, at the time of writing, I am just under half way with £475 with six days to go before I start.

You can also learn more about the work of the Journalists’ Charity in this video and more about my ride and route here.

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#GEN2012 – Dos and don’ts of connected TV strategy for publishers

June 1st, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting, Multimedia

Image by por brylle on Arte & Fotografia. Some rights reserved.

The connected TV audience “wants to be multitasked”, editors were told at the News World Summit in Paris today, as part of a session looking at four screen (and more) strategy.

Users do “not want to wait 12 hours” to discuss programming “at the water cooler”, head of digital strategy at France Televisions Bruno Patino said. Instead they want to do it “live on social networks”.

Patino called it “the social couch”, a “very rich and augmented TV experience.” which enables users to share their experience and not be “limited by same place or same time”.

So what should broadcasters be offering these audiences? Patino shared a list of dos and don’ts with delegates:

Don’t:

  • Don’t try to maintain the system closed – you won’t be master of the TV set anymore
  • Don’t try to limit the user experience
  • Don’t believe your content will rule the users’ experience

Do:

  • Always distribute – wherever you can. A new path is a new chance for your programme to be seen, don’t think exclusivity, think ubiquity
  • Engage the audience at every level including creation
  • Be xenophilic
  • Be pragmatic
  • Try, experiment
  • Talk about the whole universe
  • Try gamification
  • Promote connections
  • Test technologies
  • Put the user at the centre

Also speaking on the topic of four screen strategy, the BBC’s general manager of news and knowledge Phil Fearnley shared his own recommendations:

  • Work on standard and scalable solutions
  • Consider apps and browsers, not apps v browser
  • Simple design – quality content
  • The importance of live

At the BBC, he added, the importance of live is the “absolute focus”, as opposed to “trying to deliver all functionality” possible. That is “not going to work”, he said.

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Tablets and mobiles boost BBC iPlayer use

The BBC has reported a 94 per cent year-on-year surge in the use of its iPlayer TV and radio catch-up service on mobile and tablet devices.

New figures covering the first four months of 2012 show 15 per cent of all programme requests made in April were on tablets or mobiles – some 28 million streamed programmes in a month.

The total number of requests for TV and radio programmes rose 24 per cent year-on-year to 190 million in the period from January to the end of April.

Radio use of the iPlayer was boosted by demand for football coverage on BBC Radio 5Live. Among the most listened-to radio programmes in April were 5Live’s coverage of the Champions League (Barcelona v Chelsea), Premier League (Manchester City v Manchester United) and FA Cup (Liverpool v Everton).

The BBC said it would publish iPlayer statistics on a monthly basis from now on. The report does not include requests for web-only content (such as online news clips) – only requests for full-length programmes which have been transmitted on a TV channel or radio station.

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Western Mail journalist stands by translation article

The Western Mail caused much debate yesterday after publishing a front page editorial responding to a report claiming that proposals had been made for records of meetings at the Welsh National Assembly to be translated into Welsh at an estimated cost of up to £400,000.

In the editorial the Western Mail said this sort of service may therefore be “a luxury we cannot afford”.

The report prompted a Twitter hashtag debating the decision to run the editorial called #westernfail and much press commentary, from the Independent’s Rob Williams here, to the BBC’s political editor for Wales, Betsan Powys, who said the article worked to “raise some questions about the value for money of a set of recommendations from politicians – albeit in pretty uncompromising terms”.

Here’s the response issued by the Western Mail:

We fully support the right of AMs and others to address meetings in Welsh or English, according to their choice, and the publication in both languages of the official Record of Proceedings of plenary meetings.

But we believe the recommendation to translate all Assembly proceedings into Welsh, at such enormous cost, is a step too far in this period of austerity.

At a time when front-line public service and benefits to poorer people are being cut, we cannot in all conscience support a huge increase in the National Assembly’s translation budget. That is why we back the Assembly Commission’s draft Bill and oppose the amendment proposed by the communities, equality and local government committee.

At the time of writing the online version of the article had received 448 comments. BBC Radio Wales yesterday asked if the editorial is “an attack on the Welsh language?”.

Chief reporter Martin Shipman, who secured the original story, said “this is not about the Welsh language” and that the newspaper will not be apologising and stands by the piece.

In all conscience when priorities are being looked at we could not support the spending of a considerable amount of extra money on Welsh language translation services at a time when the poorest people in Wales are being hit by benefit cuts and public service cuts.

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Video: what the Journalists’ Charity does and how you can help

Video by the Press Association. Presenter Anna Botting (@annabotting)

This two year-old video shot by the Press Association helps explain the work of the Journalists’ Charity.

The charity usually raises money at high-profile dinners and speaker events, but now you have the chance to support your fellow journalists (and your future selves) in a much easier way.

Just a fiver (or more) will help speed me, Journalism.co.uk publisher and owner (@johncthompson) on my way on an epic 1400km solo and unsupported cycle from Brighton to Oslo, Norway on 8-19 June 2012 (see earlier blog post for full details).

My sponsorship page is here.

 

 

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Voice of America: China’s Foreign Ministry questioned on Al Jazeera journalist visa issue

Image by jamiejohndavies on Flickr. Some rights reserved

Voice of America has published what it says is a transcript of questions put to the spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry, in relation to Al Jazeera English’s report that its China correspondent Melissa Chan had her visa renewal application “refused”.

Journalism.co.uk reported on Tuesday (8 May) that Al Jazeera English has closed down its Beijing bureau after Chan’s visa was apparently “refused” by authorities.

Al Jazeera said in its report “it is continuing to request a presence in China”.

Voice of America has published “a transcript of some of the questions and answers at the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s daily briefing” in which a spokesman is said to have responded to questions from foreign journalists about what had happened.

Hong Lei: I have stressed that China welcomes foreign journalists to report in China and we have also provided convenience to foreign journalists in reporting objectively in China. I think you have been in China for several years and are very clear about this. At the same time I want to stress that foreign journalists should abide by Chinese laws and regulations while reporting in China.

Read Voice of America’s full article here.

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Media release: Japanese broadcaster NHK expands into US market

April 23rd, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Broadcasting

Image copyright Dhaval Jani on Flickr. Some rights reserved

NHK, Japan’s public service broadcaster, has expanded into the US market with the launch of a 24/7 English-language news channel for New York residents.

In a statement announcing the launch, Tetsushi Wakita, head of NHK WORLD, said the launch would help fill the gap in the market left by US media organisations closing or downsizing their bureaus in Tokyo.

NHK WORLD TV is expanding to New York because we believe there is a market for a US audience interested in Asian programming, focusing on breaking news from the region, Japanese culture, developments in society/politics and on being a key source for natural disasters news.

The new channel will broadcast to approximately 7 million people in the New York area and Newsline, a 30 minute round-up of Asian news, will be broadcast nightly on the Regional News Network. The channel already broadcasts in the UK on Freesat and Sky and has a total European audience of 76.1 million.

 

Updated April 24 with information about UK broadcasts  and European viewing figures.

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