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Old October 15th, 2009, 02:45 PM   #16
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Video news release

I'd just like some help with a definition here.

A good few years ago I worked on a project (nothing to do with video) where I was expected to give a couple of news releases to the local paper. They re-edited and screwed them up so the items didn't make sense. I was later told that a news release should be published as it is - or the paper sends someone round to interview you for their own piece.

From the previous discussion, I'm totally confused as to what constitutes a video news release. Especially the "a package of material to be re-edited as the station sees fit" comment. What does that package comprise? And if someone can re-edit it, how can you be sure the news release says what you want it to?
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Old October 15th, 2009, 03:24 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Craig Seeman View Post
Paid advertisement is another story. At $19,700 that sounds like it doesn't include the airtime though.
Yes, the $19k included airtime.
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 09:04 AM   #18
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Annie

A VNR is usually, but not always, a selection of sound bites and supporting B-roll. It's usually uploaded to satellite for download to any station that wants it. They can repackage the material to look as if they produced it. Even a finished piece could be hacked up if the station really wanted to.
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 09:27 AM   #19
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These days VNRs can be delivered by FTP.
Pathfire, used by nearly all and cable stations in the USA, sends an MPEG-1 screener link to the stations, If they view and like they can download a broadcast quality MPEG-2 Program Stream.

Usually VNRs include a completely edited story, often with additional B-roll and bites.
They can also be just B-roll of footage and bites.
They can also be "evergreen" not tied to a specific airdate or timely event.
Often one sigma encodes the VNR which allows one to track actual use/success (since airtime is NOT guaranteed).

If the VNR includes a pre cut story the audio is often "split track" so the station can retrack with local voice over and/or sometimes cutting in their own on camera. Of course they may completely re-edit at will but the idea is to avoid them spinning the story another way by giving them little room to do that.

If one is paying for air time that's really a long form commercial (sometimes :120 but it depends on how the time is sold). That's not a news story AT ALL. That's advertising. Any station accepting money and guaranteeing airtime and not making it clear it's an advertisement is likely breaking FCC regulations in the USA. You can not BUY/Guarantee Airtime for a "news" story unless there's some "wink wink, nudge nudge" going on.

I've done this for a living so the above is not recitation of book learned knowledge but first hand experience.
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 05:17 PM   #20
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Thanks for the explanations.
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Old October 25th, 2009, 01:25 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Craig Seeman View Post
You can not BUY/Guarantee Airtime for a "news" story unless there's some "wink wink, nudge nudge" going on.
Ha, you're not "supposed" to be able to buy news time. I spent 10+ years producing tv news (most of that time at 2 O&Os) and I saw a lot of things happen that were not supposed to.

The Financial Times ran a story a few weeks back that made my head swim. Basically that media buyers say TV stations/networks are calling them, offering to match RADIO rates. Are you kidding? What does THAT say about the state our economy?

But those of you who produce commercials might be salivating at the thought :-)
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Old October 26th, 2009, 10:09 AM   #22
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Wendy, that'a the "wink, wink, nudge, nudge" method I was referring to of course. It's also why I have a deep and inherent mistrust for most news shows. Even the choice of what doesn't get covered is suspect. All news is biased and the biggest factor is usually money in one form or another. Someone watching with eyes wide open (which is unfortunately rare) can spot these incidences though. Fortunately the FCC hasn't totally given up on enforcement. Anybody openly selling placement is a prime target for FCC investigation.
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