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Old January 31st, 2011, 01:04 AM   #1
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Natl. Soccer Tournament: Make money taping? How?

Will be attending a high school level national soccer tournament in about three weeks.

I'll be taping the game(s) my friends son is playing in. Then it dawned on me the possibility other parents might want a copy of the game(s). A win-win if I knew how?

How would you capture this opportunity ? What kind of equipment would I need to generate DVD's in the field?
Basically what is the right/smart way to do this ?

As for equipment someone suggested :
Sony MC6 DVD recorder to have camera A/V out to and create the master DVD (are there battery operated DVD recorders out there?)
1-3 disc DVD duplicator ? If so what brand ?
DVD printer ?
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Old January 31st, 2011, 01:53 AM   #2
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Don't be bothered with making DVDs in the field. Let them order from you.

Andrew
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Old January 31st, 2011, 07:17 AM   #3
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Thanks Andrew.

Then have an order form ? Take money up front ? What's a fair price for a DVD ?
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Old January 31st, 2011, 08:10 AM   #4
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I agree with Andrew...trying to burn disks in the field is a pain in the backside, and you'd need to sell a bunch to break even just from buying the burner.

From a business standpoint...you have to look at a few things. The time committment first of all. You'll likely wind up doing a minimal amount of editing, and you've already committed probably many hours to shooting the raw material. What's the time worth? Sure, you will be there for your sons matches...are you going to stay for other team matches on spec?

Even doing little more than adding titles and rendering the video to burn to disc, you will at the very least spend twice as long as the match in edit. Then, assuming you get every parent of every boy on every team to order a DVD ( which won't happen in a million years), you sell....20 copies? 30 copies?

Factor in the cost of the medium; not a lot, but still a cost. Your time, shipping or delivery ( also costs that aren't huge, but overhead nonetheless), and the time and cost to produce an order form, and some way of keeping records of mailing addresses, etc. then calculate the value of the product to the customer

. On impulse buys, which this would be for most, $5-10 a copy would likey sell. If course, the winning game, or the "big goal", etc. can make the final product more "valuable".

You could make a few bucks since you're going to be there anyway and recording the action. It wouldn't be a lot though. If I were going to take on a project like that for fee, I'd want a guaranteed minimum order at a fixed price to make sure it was worth my time. Of course, it's good practice for your shooting skills too, so there is intrisic value in that.

I've done things like this before (community events, sports days at schools, etc.) and the value is reallly only there in the experience. You'll come away from it a better videographer, but you won't come away with any appreciable cash.
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Old January 31st, 2011, 09:23 AM   #5
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A friend of mine did something similar (was asked to shoot college marching bands). He shared his experience and this is what I learned:

Have a written contract with the school or stadium, whoever the organizer is - very important for preventing all sorts of possible legal issues! Also, having a contract will allow you to choose the best location for setting up your camera.

Shoot using a good manual camera on a high quality (smooth moving) tripod. Distribute flyers (nothing fancy, just half page b/w papers) pointing to your website and letting them know they will be able to see the game online soon.

Go home and immediately (and I mean immediately, within a couple of hours!) post a short edited version on your website or Youtube. Have a PayPal account set up, this way anyone can order a copy securely using a credit card. Shipping the copies out can wait a few days, even a couple of weeks.

As far as price, you will be surprized to find that you will be able to charge as much as $20-25 with no problems.

Good luck,
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Old January 31st, 2011, 10:56 AM   #6
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Wayne, thanks for the reality check !

It will definitely be good practice since my sports shooting has been mostly football.

Ervin, thanks for sharing your friends experience. Am going to get on it to find the organizer and get clearance / contract.

This is why I love DVinfo !
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Old January 31st, 2011, 11:37 AM   #7
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And don't get too carried away with editing. Just shoot to follow the action and the video content can be pretty much a straight dump of that.

And put some rudimentary type of copy protection on it, even if it's just a note on the disc art stating that the disc has copy protection. Sometimes parents get ideas .... sometimes openly discussing who would order a copy and make dupes for the parents whilst in the queue and only metres away from the ordering table.

Andrew
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Old January 31st, 2011, 09:40 PM   #8
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I hope I didn't come across like I was raining on the parade...certainly not my intent. I just have a fairly vivid recollection of one of the first times I did something similar for a community association sports day.

I was really stoked at the idea of having sold over 150 DVD's until my wife ( who is an accountant) informed me that I had almost broken even...what a buzz kill!

Of course, I'd gone out and spent money on some better accessories to do it "properly", which ate up the "profits" quite nicely.

I don't regret doing those shoots in any way...I did quite a few after that, I just went in knowing it was giving me experience primarily, and there was a chance of a little extra jingle in the jeans...
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Old February 1st, 2011, 12:07 AM   #9
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And something that pays for the new gear is always a good thing.

Andrew
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Old February 1st, 2011, 08:59 AM   #10
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Very true, and a very good point!
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Old February 1st, 2011, 10:24 AM   #11
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Works for me! :-P

(then again I am also so easily bribed with chocolate and really good espresso coffee)

Andrew
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Old February 1st, 2011, 12:29 PM   #12
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Not to rain on your parade either, but in Florida, shooting a schoolastic event sometimes has rules. Either you can't or you owe a percentage. This is just a friendly heads up, it is possible no one will bother you or possible someone might intervene.

On the other hand, if I can offer a suggestion. You could get fancy and add some still shots to help fill the boring scenes, and a step even further with individual player shots on the knees with their name, it might sell a little better.
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Old February 1st, 2011, 02:45 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Smith View Post
Works for me! :-P

(then again I am also so easily bribed with chocolate and really good espresso coffee)

Andrew
When you decide to come to Canada for a visit, I can help you out with that coffee addiction...I've been a home roaster/blender for about ten years, and I do a couple of REALLY nice espresso blends..

Everyone's gotta have ONE vice, don't they?
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Old February 1st, 2011, 02:47 PM   #14
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I've done this fairly often, here in the UK and you just need to accept that a few parents are going to burn their own copies and not worry about that. Others have talked about the logistics of the recording and burning process, so I'll concentrate on the shooting side.

If it is at all possible see if you can arrange some form of elevated platform so the lens is at least 7 feet above the ground.

I doubt you'll be able to pursuade them, but I got to use a proper scaffolding tower on one job, while another had tiered seating to give a bit more height. If the final has penalty shootouts, then you also need to be able to remove the camera from the tripod and get onto the pitch. I've put a few pictures up.

The reason for the height is that the most suitable location for a single camera is on the half way line - BUT the linesman will spend a great amount of time here and get in the shot, as the play moves towards the goal on the linesmans side then he will again get in the way. Not so bad the other way, as long as the team managers/teachers don't do the same. There's also the practical problems. Being close to the line means that travel from the left to the right means you have almost a 180 degree pan arc to deal with.

If you've not had plenty of experience, you will fall over your feet. I always try to stand in the finishing position so you can then be zoomed medium/wide to let you 'find' the ball, then you can follow it and then start to zoom in as the play passes your position, gradually going in.

If anyone has not done it before, but I assume the OP has - so this is for others interested, the real problem is made easier if the camera is up and a little away from the line - the pan arc is less, and movement past the camera is a little slower. The major problem is following play, for the viewer there, they can see what is coming, and make a good guess of where the ball is going next. Through the viewfinder the ball can suddenly vanish and you have no idea where, so you need to constantly be aware and being able to look out from the viewfinder, even if with peripheral vision is important for following the ball. Panning to follow a ball means you need practice watching the trajectory as it left the frame and being able to predict where it pops back in again. In tackles, the ball will go one way, or the other. You need to have good reaction times. With single camera, you will sometimes have to quickly zoom out which looks like a cop out, to regain the ball. Outside, focusing won't be a huge issue if it's bright - but sometimes here it's cold, rainy, and you really need to be good with manual focus. Auto focus (not that I have it) is very unpredictable when zoomed in. If you are able to get an extra camera that can rove around that you can use to cover some of the main camera dodgy shots, that's good - but don't be tempted to put it on the other side of the pitch - a classic example of where 'crossing the line' really looks bad!
paul
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Old February 1st, 2011, 05:13 PM   #15
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Florida State run events have restrictions on people entering the stadium with tripods etc. FSHAA rules actually prohibit what you want to do: Video their event and sell it to parents for your profit.

Legally, they are putting on the event and they "own it". The state competition I went to had a Media Company hired to produce the photography and video for the event which then got marketed and sold to parents. They, of course, get the best positions and access to the field. Each school is permitted one videographer to document the event for the school. That designated person is issued a permit which gets you in some places but not others. Warpaint is optional.

I would expect a national event to be as restrictive if not moreso. You aren't the first one to try and make money off the crowd at these events. All that just to say you might want to research the website of the organization that is hosting the tournament, connect with the team administration (they may already have someone) and get your ducks in a row.
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