on our mac-inspired set

As the new year starts, we are kicking off another round of “What’s Your Trip?” with Andrew Zimmern for The Travel Channel.

The show is a platform for independent VJs and would be Travel Journalists,

We’re looking for short pieces (1-3 mins), and we’re paying! ($250 a minute, up to a max of $1,000).

We’re looking for the unusual, the interesting, the humorous, the amazing.

Lot’s of things qualify as travel – food, great stories, sports, adventure. Pretty much anything that makes us look at it and go ‘geez, this ought to be on TV’. From past experience, funny works great, but don’t feel limited.

We’re starting to review now, so upload your submissions to: (http://www.travelchannel.com/yourtrip) and we hope to be in touch with you soon!


3 responses to ““WHAT’S YOUR TRIP?” IS BUYING

  1. Hi Michael, I was having coffee with a friend from a very… very small production company, they are having legal issues with a guy who has been arrested in Bangkok claiming he works for them.
    Apparently before this guy left he dropped into their office for some advice on how to use his camera, with the understanding that if he got anything good while he was on an extended holiday though Asia he would send it to them. Thinking about the Boxing Day Tsunami and “what do we have to lose?” they walked him through the camera and even gave him a box of old recycled mini DV tapes.

    Now he’s been arrested he’s claiming they are his employer and liable for his legal fees.

    At one level the production company is not worried. The guy is obviously just trying it on but they are a small company and don’t need the hassle of international court cases. Just another damn thing they don’t need.

    It made me wonder what is the exposure for The Travel Channel?
    I mean the people do your course and are paid for footage. Does that make you liable for their behavior? Even though I carry my own liability insurance (do you advise your VJ’s to have that? Normal travel insurance wouldn’t cover it.) I know when I travel for a show the production company has insurance for at least 10mill.

    In a world where someone is always to blame i.e. sue, just not the actual person who did it, production companies could find themselves the target of a lot of legal nonsense. How does the Travel Channel handle it?

  2. Hi Stephen,

    Your comment raises an interesting point, as this technology percolates out into the general population.
    At the Academy we spend several hours in a ‘legal session’ to make sure the grads understand the rather complex world which they are entering.
    As the grads are not hired by The Travel Channel (or us), and as the freelancer your friends gave the tapes and advice to was not hired by them, there is no legal grounding here for their being involved. Our graduates (and anyone who submits to Whats Your Trip) are freelancers, and act much as contributors to The New Yorker or National Public Radio, (or America’s Funniest Home Video for that matter). Once we purchase their work, we bear a degree or responsibility for its accuracy and the rights issues associated with the content. However, while they are making efforts to create work that we might want to buy, they are very much free agents. The grads all have certificates from The Academy, which shows that they are indeed certified by The Academy, but are in no ways employees of either The Academy or The Travel Channel. We instruct them very clearly that they are free to say they are shooting something in the hopes of selling it to The Travel Channel, but we also instruct them very clearly that they are NOT employees of The Travel Channel.
    As more and more cameras move into more and more ‘regular people’s hands’, this is clearly going to become an issue, not only with us, but with everyone.
    I don’t know Thai law or Australian law, but IMHO, your friends are in no trouble. But as you say, in this litigious society, anyone is free to sue, and I have no doubt many will.

  3. NZ law if you do over a certain amount of work for a company, even as a freelancer, there is an implied responsibility… I’m not explaining this well with the right terminology it’s not my field… contract employment law over here is a bit complex.
    But in NZ if you booked a freelancer often enough then they gain some limited rights and obligations as an employee, not certain at what point that happens but I do know that’s why the production company’s over here have to carry a lot of liability cover even if most of us freelancers have to have our own.
    Fun and games.

    Happy New Year

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