Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Team A Newscast 3:50

This was the first week we had 5 newscasts, meaning the first one started at 3:50 instead of 4:00. Lucky me, I was assigned as producer to the 3:50 newscast. On top of that, we also changed from NCC News to NCC News On-Campus, meaning we could only do on-campus stories, which turned out to be a lot harder than most, if not all, of us thought it would be.

Click here to listen to the newscast.

The anchor of the newscast was Jess. She did not have a foner planned before class, but she was very helpful with helping Allie with a story idea. In the end, Jess used this back-up idea she gave to Allie as her foner. She interviewed architecture students about their final projects that are due tomorrow and what the students had to do for these final projects that they have been pulling all-nighters this past week for. Jess was not able to get in contact with someone until about 3:00, so that ended up being a bit stressful because she was rushing to write her story while I was printing out the rundowns. However, I think Jess did a great job under the time pressure and came out with a good story. She was also very helpful with writing stories and helping me figure out the order of the rundown.

Allie was one of the reporters. As of Tuesday night, Allie was going to do her story on the withdrawl deadline (this past Monday), but when the person at the registrar's office was not there to give her an interview, she made a last minute switch to doing a story on Junior Day at SU. Allie did a great job remaining calm and never giving up on finding a story...she went right out into the field and reported on what was right in front of her and I thought it was a great recovery.

Eric was my second reporter. Since Eric was going to the women's lacrosse game in Cornell today, he was planning on finishing his wrap on the trip to Cornell and then e-mailing it to me. He had his interview done this morning, but while I was in the production meeting I got a frantic phone call from Eric saying none of his sound recorded. It worked out okay, though, because Eric did a live hit from the women's lacrosse game. We were in contact all day working out the details and the communication there was great.

The actual newscast went okay. Jess sounded really good and comfortable on air for only reading through the script one time beforehand. At some point we must have went over on time a lot because I had to have Jess cut Eric off in the middle of doing his live story. This was definitely my fault because I told Eric he had 50 seconds, the time allotted, and I probably should have given him a lesser time in case he went over. Eric DID go 50 seconds, but we were heavy going into it, so I had to have Jess cut him off with "NOW THIS". However, because Jess and I were communicating so well before the newscast went on air, we had already planned everything out in case this happened, so it went smoothly considering the circumstances.

We came back from the break with 23 seconds left. I told Jess to read the kicker and then judge what weather and close to do based on how much time there was left. When she still had a full sentence to go in the kicker and we only had 8 seconds left, I motioned for her to cut the last line and go to the weather. Luckily, she noticed this and closed with a short weather and a short close with 2 seconds to spare.

The only thing that got messed up at the end was that Jess didn't say "NCC News On-campus." This script error annoyed all of us, I think, because just 10 minutes before we went on-air I reminded Jess to introduce herself in the music and headlines (something I forgot to do last week) and she remembered to add "On-Campus" to the music and headlines, but we just forgot to add it in to the close.

All in all, being the first 3:50 newscast and first week doing on-campus stories, I think we did a good job. There was definitely a ton of stress and a lot of last minute story changes, but we all dealt with it well. Also, I think the news team as a whole worked well together because everyone was using each other's stories and everyone was very open to giving each other sound from their interviews or other information about their stories.

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