Category Archives: video school

Travel Channel Academy Results

Jeff Day had never touched a video camera or an edit system before he walked into the Travel Channel Academy course in DC on Thursday.

We put him through our extremely rigorous 4-day video bootcamp.

We emphasize excellence.

The video above is the first video Jeff Day has ever made.

Pretty impressive.

And Jeff Day is no kid. He’s in his 50s.

But not all that unusual for TCA students.

The technology has made it possible for millions of people who had never touched a video camera or an edit system to learn how to do this quickly and efficiently.  And the quality of the small, digital hand held cameras (we use SONYs), is just astonishing. You can see it for yourself.

The Travel Channel is committed to creating a global corps of 1,000 trained and certified content providers.

We’re partners in this very interesting venture.

Soon Travel Channel will have a vast cohort of content producers all over the world who can begin to create content for the channel to sell not just programs for the channel itself, but also content for Travel Channel Media’s vast demand for online and on phone (!) video content.

So great job Jeff.

Keep at it.

And congrats to all the grads from this week. And we’re looking forward to our New York session next week.

See what YOU can do.


TC Academy New York

Today we conclude another session of the Travel Channel Academy in NY.  This afternoon, we will certify another 40 gradautes of the Academy.  We have sessions scheduled for 2009 in NY, DC and Santa Barbara, but places are already filling up.  Take a look.








Judy Rolfe

Professional photographer Judy Rolfe was a participant in last week’s Travel Channel Academy in Washington, DC.

Here a few photos she was kind enough to send us:





And here is a link to her blog, where she recounts her experience at the course.

Thanks, Judy.

More Than 10 Billion Served

The Revolution Will Be Televised….

The Wall Street Journal reports on Wednesday, March 5th that:

“in December, Internet users watched more than 10 billion videos online, according to comScore Inc. – one of the single heaviest months for online video consumption since comScore began tracking it in 2006.

As that is such an astonishing number, let me run that past you one more time, in bold:

In December, Interent users watched more than 10 billion videos online.

Clearly, the appetite for this stuff is limitless, and we are just at the very start of video online.

We are a video-driven society. While the average American watched more than 4.5 hours of TV a day (a day) in 2006, the average American household bought only 1 book per year. We are a video driven culture, and as video migrates faster and faster to the web, we are going to spend even more time watching video.

This raises two question:

First, who is going to make all of this stuff?

That is, who is going to provide this massive, almost incomprehensible volume of content to the web?

and second: who is going to make all of this stuff?

The second question raises far more interesting implications in terms of information, journalism and politics.

The first question is easy enough to answer. There will clearly be a growing market for video content, and it will be made by those who can manage to deliver both quality and meet a market cost point that is commensurate with the realities of a 10 billion+ videos a month universe. This is a demand that is  not going to be filled by conventional production companies, nor by production crews repleat with expensive gear, vans, teams of soundmen and grips and folks who take a full day (at several thousand dollars per day) to elicit 2-3 soundbites. It will be filled by folks who are talented, nible and equipped with a small camera and a laptop edit system – who can crank out a video, finished in an hour or three, and who consider getting a few hundred bucks for their time well worth it.

This the market will drive, and it is inevitable.

The more interesting question is one of content.

Until now, this most powerful engine for political discussion, public discourse and debate has been in the hands of about a dozen people – from Matt Lauer to Viacom to GE.

For a democracy, this is an act of insanity, if not suicide. We would certainly never accede to placing our free press in the hands of GE and Matt Lauer – but we do it without a second thought in the far more pervasive (and persuasive) world of video.

As video democratizes, both through the web and through increasingly inexpensive gear, it is critical that people rise up, so to speak, and Carpe Medium – that is, seize the medium, take control of the content, and vastly expand who gets to say what, both online and on air.

Why VJs are Inevitable


NBC News says ‘hello” to the VJ


This was in this morning’s NY Times.

A half-page ad on page E4.

Looks like NBC News is dipping their toe in VJ training. Maybe more than it’s dipping. It offers a full year program ($34,000 tuition).

I am not The New York Film Academy. But it sure speaks volumes about where the business is going.

More from TCA NY

 Images from Travel Channel Academy, New York.

We are off to Los Angeles where another TCA will start on Thursday.

We also announced the launch of the Advanced Travel Channel Academy.

We will run 3 of these in 2008.  We will take a group of 12 people to locations like Australia, S. Africa and Thailand for 10 days. During that time, the entire group will, on location, shoot, script, cut and produce a complete half-hour documentary.  The dates are set but places are limited. We think it will be a great experience.