Tag Archives: RTNDA

Flip This Camera


The Flip Video Camera.  I learned about them at RTNDA.  The Flip Video Ultra is the one I got.  Just $150 (I need to quit spending my economic stimulus before I get it!) and you can shoot an hour of 640 x 480 video on to 2 Gigs of flash memory.  There are no moving parts.  No zoom.  No traditional hard drive.  So the two AA batteries supposedly last for hours.  We will see!

So, I put this little video together last night.  It was also my first experience with iMovie 08.  Imagine my disappointment when iMovie woudln’t import the .avi movie files from the Flip!  After much reading online, I downloaded iMovie HD 06 and use that to convert the video files into something iMovie 08 can use, and there you go.  Seems like Macs aren’t immune to these types of frustrations!

So here is the movie.  Hopefully future projects will be a lot better!

What Would Murrow Do?

The last session at RTNDA.  A SUPER session combined with NAB and BEA (I don’t know who that is and I’m too lazy to Google it right now).  The subject?  With all this new technology and changing newsroom structures, just “What Would Edward R. Murrow Do?”  Anyway???

They had a couple of panalists who had written books on Murrow;  Marci Burdick, Senior VP of Broadcast and Cable for Schurz Communications;  Stacey Woelfel, News Director of KOMU-TV in Columbia, MO;  Harvey Nagler, CP of CBS Radio News;  Mark Effron, Senior VP Titanictv.com;   and the whole thing was moderated by ABC News Correspondant John Cochran.

I guess it was a fine session for what it was worth.  Really though, how much credence can you put in a session that seems to know what a guy who has been dead for a long time would think now?

What really upset me though was the whole discussion on, “Gee.  We as the media really messed up by giving Bush and Colin Powell a pass leading up to the war in Iraq.”  I will give Mark Effron credit when he pointed out that all the military and intelligence experts thay talked to said that WMDs was a slam dunk.  You think?  Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and the British Inelligence Service were saying WMDs were a slam dunk!  The whole premise that we didn’t find WMDs so the press must have dropped the ball is so ridiculous.  They weren’t going to go in and inspect Iraq!  President Clinton allowed the inspectors to get kicked out.  What do they think they should have done given EVERYBODY was saying there were WMDs in Iraq?

The discussion also deteriorated even more when the comment was made that Murrow wouldn’t have worn a US Flag pin after 911.  Who knows.  I have a problem with those who have a problem showing some patriotism on the air in a time of war.

This is pure speculation, but I am waiting for the day when it’s revealed that Saadam sent his WMDs into Syria.

I DID get a lot out of RTNDA, but it did confirm for me that the MSM is mostly very liberal.  Maybe RTNDA and/or NAB will surprise me and get Brit Hume on one of their panels.

Check it Out

Check out time is 10:00 a.m.  The RTNDA @ NAB Conference end at Noonish with exhibits continuing until 3:00 or 3:30 this afternoon.  That means I get to carry my bag and my carry on to my workshops this afternoon and around the exhibit hall, if I choose to do that.  I’m hoping the RTNDA will have a place for folks like me to stash their luggage while attending the other stuff.  Either way, I’ll make it work!  It’s not like I have a choice :-)

Tim Robbins Revisited


I was just on Drudge and there is a link to the 6 minutes of Tim Robins speech that I talked about earlier in the week that helped kick off RTNDA.  Robbins’ remarks were dripping with sarcasm, and I suppose if I shared his liberal views I would say even hilariously funny.  I guess as a Conservative Christian the best I could give him is offensive and at times mildly amusing.

As I mentioned in my previous post, he did end with a few serious points.  Some I do agree with.  It would be interesting to actually talk to him and see if we saw those points the same way.  For example he talked about the opportunity the media has to elevate the level of debate and to educate to make the world a better place.  To unite us, not bring attention to those who divide us.  Yet during his speech he took numerous swipes at President Bush and defended Former President Clinton’s lying under oath.  He also took a shot at some of my favorite conservative commentators like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham.  If that is uniting, who needs dividing!  As far as knocking off the celebrity type coverage and the car wreck type stuff, he and I agree.  When he says educate the public, does he mean liberal causes only?  In the case of Global Warming and other liberal ideals, the mainstream media already does!

The story mentions that the NAB ordered all cameras to be turned off.  I was there and didn’t hear that or see that.  I am still kicking myself for not recording those 6 minutes myself.  I had just finished video taping some of Charles Osgood getting an award.  If I had brought my FireWire for my camera I could have had Robbns’ comments on YouTube that very day.

What bothers me most is that the NAB/RTNDA would invite Robbins to speak at all.  He is obviously very partisan and by his own admission has no idea what the future of digital media even means (although I know he was being a bit sarcastic).  It just confirms for many that my business as a whole is very liberal.  If that’s not the case, why have Robbins speak and cause people to conclude that it is true?  Judging from the reaction to Robbins speech from most in attendance, it is.

Good Save


I was wondering yesterday if staying in RTNDA is the best idea for Family Life Radio.  I still haven’t decided that it is for sure, but today was a much better day at the RTNDA.  Today was the first day that I felt like radio is even a thought in the organization.  Most everything is focused toward TV.  Don’t get me wrong.  It IS fun to hear about and I can definitely relate!  It even makes me wonder if I should go back to TV since I keep hearing how someone who can shoot video, report, edit on a laptop, and post to the web is a valuable commodity these days.  Hmmm.  That’s me!  Of course, I keep hearing by “valuable” they don’t mean as much $$ as the big anchors used to pull down.  It sounds like there will be less and less of those over time too.

But, I really do feel called to Family Life Radio right now.  That means I need to figure out how to take these TV centered workshops and glean info for my radio job.  Today was a big help.  One workshop was even ALL radio!  The latest in recording devices for the field.  Nice stuff to know!

Also, today was the NAB/RTNDA Radio Lunch.  Great info on the projected future of ad revenue.  To summarize, Radio, TV and the internet are not drawing the dollars when compared to who uses the medium.  Radio especially is loosing out.  Newspapers, magazines and the Yellow Pages are pulling way more ad revenue than the eye balls they are drawing.  Eventually advertisers will figure this out and newspapers and the yellow pages will lose more and that $$ will migrate to radio, TV and online.  Pretty sweet!  It doesn’t affect us directly since we are listener supported.  Still.  It’s nice to have a healthy industry!

Back to whether to stay in RTNDA.  I’m going to have to go through my notes and determine if staying in justifies the station paying over $1,500 for this visit plus the yearly dues.  If I have enough useful information to share with my team back home that will help a lot.  There IS a benefit for me to be in the industry loop.   I do feel much more connected to what is going on thanks to this trip.  That is certainly worth a lot too.

Bright Spot of the Day

I was leaving the conference today, determined to eat a “real meal”  :-)  I went into a restaurant that seemed to have reasonable prices (for around here anyway) and sat down at the bar seating up front.  After all, it was a table for one.  I was talking to one of the ladies and I mentioned something about having joy even when circumstances aren’t great in response to something she said.  Then she mentioned something about the Lord and we were soon talking about God stuff.

She shared with me how her daughter was in medical school and how she was so proud that her daughter was going to have a better life.  Not working in a casino like she was.  She shared with me that she had to take care of her Mom and 6 brothers and sisters growing up.  She had had a rougher life as a result.

In the meantime, she was hugging ad encouraging co-workers and collecting money for a card for another co-worker who lost her Mom recently.  She has a beautiful heart was shining through!  Her co-workers call her “Mom.”  You could tell that she was a source of encouragement for all.

We had a nice visit as I ate and then it was time to leave.  At that time she was in the back or something and I decided to wait until she got back.  I had planned to pray for her, but I wanted to make sure it was OK.  When she got back, she said it would be just fine!  I just thanked the Lord for her ministry at work.  I asked that He would fill her with His Love, strength and peace and that He would bless her in ways she can’t imagine!

We talked for a few more seconds about how we were forever family.  Like she told me, when we bleed, it’s comes out the same color.  Then I said to her, “What color are we going to be in Heaven?  We are just going to be in His presence forever, and we don’t have to wait.”

She thanked me for the prayer and I left.  Both us with a blessing from the Lord.

Definitely the bright spot of my day!!!  If Sharon comes to your mind, you might want to lift her up to our Heavenly Father!

Bringing the Digital Future to Your World!

Sounds pretty good.  It’s this years theme here at the RTNDA Convention.  I’ve been to two workshops today that addressed that theme pretty well!  However, in both, the focus was entirely on TV.  Trust me, when I was a TV snob, I didn’t give radio much of a thought, except as a part time weekend job to supplement my income by playing my favorite music for a few hours!

Anyway, I digress.  I am pretty excited about my new laptop.  I love the internet.  I’ve had a web page since the early ’90’s when people were getting online via Prodigy and Compuserve and a baud rate of 9600 was fast!  I am excited that media is moving online in a bigger and bigger way!  I said in 1994 that someday anyone who wanted to have their own TV station in their living room would be able too.  I wasn’t that far off.

So.  I’m thinking it’s a high tech focus at the RTNDA.  This is where the industry has to move and quickly to stay relevant and therefore to survive.  Imagine my surprise today when I found out I couldn’t go online at the Las Vegas Hilton without paying the hotel $13.  I think that is per day!  My next thought was that maybe the RTNDA could have made a deal with the hotel to provide internet during the convention.  It’s ironic.  Here I am wanting to blog from the convention who’s theme is, “Bringing the Digital Future to Your World” and I can’t get online!

I figured I would include those comments in my comments that the RTNDA was sure to ask for as part of the convention, but then I had a chance to talk to the folk that planned the convention.  Of course, I found out it’s never as cut and dry as it seems.

This morning at “breakfast” (sorry.  I was hungry all day.   I’m almost over it.) there were speeches from people running for the board.  Director-at-Large and Treasurer and maybe one other office.  One of the Director-at-Large Candidates was sitting at the same table as me and his wife asked if I would were his button.  I politely declined.  I told her I wanted to talk to all of the candidates first.  So she sent her husband over and we had a nice discussion.  Very nice and smart guy.

After lunch I saw Donna Francavilla talking with some folks.  She is also in the running for Director-at-Large.   I went over just as they were wrapping up and said hello.  As we were talking I told her my concern over this internet “issue.”  She took me over to meet Ed Esposito, who is the Chairman-Elect and Ed Tobias who is also running for Director-at-Large.  Ed Tobias said, “Two Ed’s are better than one!”  Good line  :-)

Ms. Francavilla basically laid out my concern and I took it from there.  Ed Esposito informed me that they did look into getting access during the convention for attendees, but the Hotel wanted a chunk of change.  I explained that I certainly understood the tension between cost and benefit.  I went on to say that it would be nice for RTNDA Members who can’t attend the convention to have access to blogs, video, pictures all being constantly updated during the proceedings.  I’m not sure how RTNDA would overcome the cost issue.  They are already cutting corners at “breakfast.”  (I did it again, didn’t I)

I’m a good example.  I haven’t posted to this blog this often ever!  That’s by using the internet connection here at the Hotel next door where the internet connection is complimentary.  If I hadn’t forgotten my firewire, I would have a video of the opening reception already edited and posted.  How much more could I (and others) do if I could get online at the convention?!

I really think the RTNDA could make this a priority in the future.  I came from an afternoon workshop where the panel was talking about “community journalists.”  People in the community posting pictures and video and doing reporting.  We are the professionals!  Why not let us use our skills and tools and demonstrate the very thing we are talking about?  I hope they do next time around.

Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?

Time @ NAB

One of the cool things about RTNDA at NAB is the NAB exhibit hall at the Convention Center in Las Vegas.  I’m looking forward to having a little more time to explore, although I’m not sure when that is going to be!  I did find a couple of things that might be useful back at the station.

Here’s a snapshot of one of the more visual exhibits.  I told them they should have Chicago playing.  One of the younger guys told me it was 5:45 in Chicago.  He had no idea what I was talking about!


I feel like I am complaining a lot today.  More on the internet situation at RTNDA in an upcoming post.  This morning was off to a hungry start.  I was up early, as I often am.  I had my coffee and drank some milk first thing looking forward to the RTNDA Business Breakfast.  A nice helping of eggs, maybe some toast and some orange juice, right?  Well, not exactly.  It was a continental breakfast.  That’s fine, but it wasn’t advertised that way!  I would have eaten first if I had known.  The meeting itself was great and I got to meet several of the candidates running for office to serve RTNDA.  Really nice, quality, folk.

The other problem with the food here is the price!  My goodness.  I was hoping for a real dinner tonight.  It’s going to run me around $25 minimum for a “real” dinner.  I guess I can have a personal pan pizza for about $8 or a deli wrap for $7 like I did for lunch.  It’s getting late, I better eat something.

I will get into the problem with the internet at RTNDA a little later.

Tim Robbins


Dude.  Tim Robbins was one of the speakers at this morning’s “All Industry Opening Ceremony.”  By all industry they mean the RTNDA Radio and Television folk and the NAB Radio and Television folk.  Initially, Robbins was going to be interviewed by a guy from NPR in a question answer type format.  Right away, Robbins started talking about a speech he prepared but wasn’t going to give, and the NPR guy starts talking about how he read the speech and it’s great.  We’ll I wasn’t alone in thinking, “Just give the speech already.”  After several shouts from the audience, he did.

Boy was I kicking myself for a) not rolling video on the first 3-5 minutes and b) for not having my firewire to post above mentioned video.  I am convinced that if I did and if I had that it would be on tonight’s Hannity and Colmes.  It was basically a very partisan assessment of how the war in Iraq was a mistake and how he told us so.  Now that previous statement does not give his comments justice.  They were very sarcastic, and at times pretty funny.  However, from my point of view, not well reasoned at all.  Of course, as a Christian Conservative, I do feel like a minority at the convention.

Judging from the reaction to Robbins speech, it was well received by the majority in attendance.  He went on to defend Former President Clinton.  Saying basically that his impeachment was just a sex scandal that got so much attention because of the salacious details.  Well no.  It was about lying under oath.  The sex scandal ploy is the usual smoke screen thrown up by Clinton defenders.  Lying under oath is a big deal if you are the law enforcer in chief.   Robbins also seemed to be coming out solidly behind the equal time rule, which could kill Christian Radio if implemented.  Again, my comments are not doing his speech justice.  He was taking the opposite view, but his comments were dripping with sarcasm.  For the most part, the crowd loved it!  I guess if I was a liberal partisan, I would have too.  You can read much more about the speech here and hear it too.  I will warn you.  There is some very crude language including the F-bomb and a reference to a sexual act that is very crude.

Now, I will give Tim Robbins credit.  He did end with some good points.  There IS too much reporting on celebrities.  There IS too much attention paid to the car wreck and the sensational, but mostly empty, stories.  Robbins asks, why don’t we have more reporting that builds people up?  What if we consider more points of view and respect each other?  He says our country is great, and it is.  He says we are divided, and we are.  I didn’t see his speech as a starting point to uniting us though.  For some reason I was left with the impression that when he said as broadcasters we have a wonderful opportunity to educate and be a catalyst for change, he meant in a liberal, progressive sort of way.