can we put the contact info on the screen as well?
In 2000, when I cut the deal with the BBC to spend five years converting their stations to the VJ model, I was asked to address the Board of Governors, the body that runs the BBC.
I gave them the standard ‘burn it to the ground’ rap, and the ‘democratization of video’ talk.
They listened attentatively.
When I was done, I asked if there were any questions.
Gavyn Davies, the Chairman of the Board of Governors raised his hand:
“If I understand what you are saying, in a decade The BBC will no longer produce television content.”
Gavyn Davies was no dope. He was not only the Chairman of the Board of The BBC, he was also the Chairman of Goldman Sachs UK.
“I think you will go from being producers to publishers”.
Today, I gave the keynote speech to the meeting of the Executive Board of PBS affiliated stations across the country. Around 200 General Managers and their lead staffers from PBS stations came together in NY at the Grand Hyatt Hotel. As I told them what I thought, we’ll see what happens.
I think PBS has enormous potential to become an engine of change in the new world of democratized video. Perhaps it is better positioned than anyone else to effect this change – this need for publishing instead of producing.
Youtube has shown us that the technology and more importantly the desire to create content has already found a home in the general population. But Youtube is a mess. It is already a synonym for raggedy video. “It looks like Youtube” is no compliment when it comes to production values.
Just as when writing percolated out to the masses following Gutenberg, someone has to organize the event – to help nurture burgeoning writers, to teach people how to do this, to craft and shape their work and ultimately to publish it….
This is what PBS could do, on a very local level.
Become a node for video literacy. A place where people could come for training, have their work reviewed, edited and if good enough, published. A true voice for the community and a place where the community could learn to speak and resonate.
Its a noble goal, and one that commercial broadcasters will not pick up.
iWitness, or iReport, CNN’s effort to reach out to ‘average people’ with cameras and edits invites them to shoot their trailer if and when the tornado hits. Accidental video. A subsititute for the news crew.
Public Broadcasting could do much more.
It could take the lead in the move to video literacy.
Personally, I think it would be the best thing since Sesame Street.