Award-winning producer and new media expert Amani Channel shares tips, tricks and techniques that every journalist should know in this age of smartphones and digital media. You will learn how to livestream video from your phone to the Web, break news using Twitter, and how to syndicate your content across social networks.
Channel will also explain how to build your online brand through social media and how it can help you stay viable during these tough economic times.
On Saturday February 20, 2010, Super Bowl MVP Doug Williams, Pro Bowl MVP James Harris and several other notables like Jon Gruden, Arthur Blank and Ambassador Andrew Young will gather in Atlanta, Georgia, for the inaugural enshrinement ceremony for the Black College Football Hall of Fame.
Eight outstanding players, two coaches, and one contributor are among those being inducted into the BCFHOF, which was established in 2009 by Williams and Harris. Both former NFL stars have made a personal commitment to preserve the legacy of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).
Organizers say the event coincides with Black History Month and more than 26 businesses and 15 NFL Franchises joined in the effort to make the event happen.
The enshrinement is a well deserved honor for the inductees and will provide a history lesson for those who may not be familiar with names such at Big Ben Stevenson (Tuskegee University), Paul Tank Younger (Grambling State Univ.) and Alonzo Jake Gaither (Florida A&M). Some well known names like Jerry Rice (Mississippi Valley State Univ.), Deacon Jones (S.C. State Univ. & Mississippi Valley State Univ.) and Coach Eddie Robinson (Grambling State Univ.) are also being enshrined.
"It has been both an honor to be involved with this historic event, and a wonderful learning experience," says Amani Channel of Visual Eye Media. "All of the inductees were remarkable leaders on the field and outstanding role models that we can all look up to."
Channel's company is one of the Platinum Sponsors. Visual Eye Media donated production services for the ceremony, which included creating a biographical video for each of the eleven inductees.
It was an exhaustive coordinated effort that involved gathering archival film, video, and photos from the respective academic institutions. NFL Films donated footage of the athletes that went on to play on the professional level and some materials came from the family's personal collection.
"The videos will not only personalize the story of each of the inductees, but also help put their accomplishments into perspective," said Channel. "These athletes and coaches helped pave the way for many of the opportunities that exist in sports today."
Jeff McKenzie, the Director of Development for the BCFHOF explains why Visual Eye Media is participating, "We really needed a video production company that would create a high-quality professional product within our budget," he explained. "Amani Channel's experience as an award-winning producer speaks for itself, and the entire Visual Eye Media team has not disappointed."
The Priority Payment Systems Inaugural Enshrinement Ceremony will be held at the Four Seasons Hotel in Atlanta from 6-9:30pm.
The Black College Hall of Fame is headquartered in Atlanta, GA. For more information about the event, and the full list of inductees visit: www.BlackCollegeFootballHOF.org
Last year may be remembered as the year when social media went mainstream. Celebrities like Ashton Kutcher and MC Hammer created a buzz through their Twitter accounts. News organizations like CNN, companies like Comcast, and some marketersand PR pros joined in on the social media frenzy. Some folks have figured it out, while others are still sitting on the bench waiting to jump into the game.
"2009 was about the growth of Twitter and Facebook and the power of messages and news traveling at a speed I don't think anyone realized it could travel," explains James Andrews, co-founder of Everywhere, a social media agency that helps brands and celebrities leverage social media for marketing and promotions.
I'm stepping up my efforts to engage in conversations via social media, and have decided to start producing video podcasts to help people create DIY podcasts and vlogs.
While I want people to use my video production services, not everyone can hire a professional crew. The fact remains, however that the equipment is more affordable than ever.
What you can't buy is experience and expertise, which is where I can help. This video is an anwer to Twitter friend/follower musicfan214 who wanted to know: What camera is best for YouTube/iTunes?
Here is a short list of cameras you may want to consider. You may want to shop around. I found some alternative prices online.
1. Flip Camera Ultra - Standard Definition, no mic terminal, internal memory $149.00
2. Flip Camera HD Mino, no mic terminal, internal memory $199.00
3. Canon ZR960 Standard Definition, Mic terminal/Mini DV (tape format) $250.00
4. Canon HD Camcorder FS/Vixia Series Hi-Def, flash memory mic terminal starting at $299.00
-Amani Channel is available for media interviews, he can emcee, or speak at your next event. Channel is a Telly award-winning writer and producer. He's appeared on Fox News Channel, CNN, and has been a featured guest commentator on NPR. He is often asked to present at conferences, guest lecture at universities, lead panel discussions, and training sessions about journalism, new media, and video production. Call (404) 213-2121 for availability and booking.
I'm not an Atlanta city resident, but I'm following the city's race for Mayor. There are huge financial and resource issues that must be addressed, and as the state's capital city, what happens politically in Atlanta is important to other municipalities.
I've attended several debates this election cycle. I've met several of the candidates, and even participated
in a bit of social media history that invovled the runoff candidates.
An interactive runoff debate was recently produced on BetterAtlanta.org. I was asked to help with the production by providing lighting for the live webcast that featured veteran Atlanta journalist Maria Saporta. She spent about fifteen minutes interviewing the runoff candidates, while area bloggers submitted questions online.
Mobile devices are the future of video communications, and as the quality increases, there will be more opportunities to include mobile video in mainstream productions. The biggest opportunity right now is in news.
The iPhone is a great device for capturing and sharing photos and video with applications like Kyte. As soon as the video is uploaded, Kyte sends out a tweet to Twitter which gives any video the possibility of going viral.
A reporter can file segments from the field, record b-roll, or interviews, and quickly upload it online. If the clips need to be edited, the iPhone and MacBook Pro allows seemless editing using Final Cut Pro.
There are already a few examples of news reporters who have used the iPhone tofile live reports , and produce packages and this trend will continue.
The new media world is filled with user generated content, citizen journalists, and do-it-yourself producers. Cell phone cameras, inexpensive DV and HD cameras, and affordable editing software can make virtually anyone a video producer. There are some key differences you'll find when you closely examine user-generated or amateur content versus video that is produced by a professional.
Production Quality - While there's nothing wrong with a self-produced video, or a video produced by an amateur, take a close look, and listen to the quality of the pictures and sound. Does the video shake, drift, or seem to lack focus on a subject? How is the lighting and sound? Does it look like the videographer was distracted or zoomed in and out or panned for no reason? Does the music overpower the narration or interviews? A tripod is a best friend for a professional cameraman, and you may not even notice if the video was shot "off the shoulder." Professionals use lights, and microphones to bring out the best in a scene or interview. Professionals also know the importance and value of shooting sequences, using wide, medium, and tight shots to tell a story. Editing - There is an art and science to editing video. Professional editors prefer to use still shots that match the narration or copy. There is cadence, or rhythm to editing that helps bring out the mood or emotion in the piece. Amateur editors tend to be random in their shot selection. The untrained eye might not notice flash frames or jump cuts, but they're common. Look at how the editor uses graphics, text, and mixes the audio. Does the text cover up video instead of being placed in the lower third of the frame? There are all things to keep an eye out for.
Storytelling - A professionally produced video should tell a story. What are the qualities of a story? Every well told story includes a beginning, a middle, and end. The producer and writer will help craft the story using visual and audio elements. It could start with a problem, or a bit of history to give the video context. The heart of the story should focus on the solution, or benefits of your product or service, and end with a strong call to act. While user generated and amateur videos can certainly be entertaining, and fun to watch, the message can be lost if the producer lacks the overall vision or ability to tell, or sell the story.
It's important that all of the elements: audio, video, and storytelling come together in an effective way to share your message. You don't want your viewers to be distracted because of a bad shot, or edit, or unable to hear an important sound bite because the audio mix is poor. Your video should make you proud to show others. It should be creative, engaging, entertaining, and informative. Most importantly your video should help you build your brand, increase sales, or raise the visibility of your service or product.
VEM wrapped up production of a cool testimonial/promo video for Siddiq Bello's Digital Bootcamp.
Bello is a digital marketing expert who now plans, and organizes comprehensive workshops for advertising and marketing agencies. He helps them get up to speed on new trends like mobile phone and behavioral marketing, video game advertising, reaching consumers throughad networks, and other timely social media topics.
VEM traveled to Chicago to tape a two-day session with Burrell, then developed, and produced a two-minute promotional video. This was a fun project because Bello gave VEM creative freedom, and we decided to create a fast paced video that reflected the energy and excitement of the attendees, and presenters.
When the Atlanta Association of Black Journalists decided to add a video component to its website, the professional journalism organization turned to the experts at Visual Eye Media.
The company collaborated with EP2 Media to produce a news styled corporate video on the first ever Unity mixer. The event brought members of the AABJ (Atlanta Association of Black Journalists), AAJA (Asian American Journalists Association - Atlanta Chapter), and the newly formed NAHJ (National Association of Hispanic Journalists - Atlanta Chapter).
Visual Eye Media Senior Producer Amani Channel conducted the interviews, narrated, and edited the video, while EP2 Media Director of Photography Mario Page provided High Definition videography services.
"I really enjoyed this project because I was able to use many of the skills I've learned working in the news business," said Channel.
AABJ President Corey Dade who writes for the Wall Street Journal said, "It's excellent! Love it. I'll have it uploaded to the Web site immediately."