Media industries self assessment

 Contribution and collaboration

I think our group collaborated together really well. Most of us had worked together at some stage over the degree meaning we had a strong sense of what people strengths were. In terms of my own contribution I think I helped run meetings, as I have quite a loud voice I used it to help guide the meetings. In the lead up to the event we had several meetings to arrange guests, organise our seminar style and to plan questions and finer details. One problem that did occur was our organisation of guests, which fell through at times. This meant we had to find other guests in a short amount of time. However as we were all working together these glitches seemed as though they never happened and it all worked out in the end. The main problem of organising the guests later than we had anticipated was then creating posters and advertising was all slightly delayed, however in saying that it was all ready to go by the Monday our week started.

 Proactive Learning

Within the organisation of the seminar I did feel that pressure being the presenter and holding the main grounds for how it would ultimately run. To make sure I was prepared for this I had to draw off prior learning I had done, ie the live interviews I had done with RWAV on RRR. I think that often we are learning and having to deal with new situations, none of the group had organised or ran a seminar such as this so it was a learning curve putting it together and organising it. A lot of the skills involved I already had but making sure they were all used appropriately came down to how well we worked as a group and given that I think we all came together really well I believe that everyone could utilise there skills to create the best seminar. It consolidated my skills in talking and meeting people, from the seminar I was able to further contact some of the guests as part of my PNR which gave me really great individual advice about entering the industry.


I was able to attend most of the seminar series; I made it to all except for two. In terms of group meetings I was in attendance at all of them and always made sure I stayed up to date with the facebook group so I was constantly in the loop with the progression of the seminar. As mentioned previously I was able to actively contribute to group meetings and being a loud voice amongst everyone was able to run some of the meetings/ keep people on track. My contribution to the event itself I believe to be quite significant as I was the MC. In preparation I did background research on all the guests and made sure I knew what questions we wanted to ask as a group. I believe I did a good job and facilitated an interesting and informative seminar (even if I am a bit bias). As I was more involved in the pre production and production the post production fell onto other people, however given how many people there were in the group this seemed fair enough and a good way to evenly spread the work around. I believe that my participation and involvement within the seminar series was of a high standard that I am happy with.

 Connections & intersections

I think the seminars were so valuable in teaching us ways of entering the industry. At the start of the semester I wasn’t ready for graduation but now am excited and happy about it!

The seminar not only informed us of the many jobs and different skills within the industry but illustrated ways to “get in” and do what we are really passionate about. As all of us have different interests it was a great way to break it up amongst ourselves and organise a seminar we were really passionate about. I think this is why the series was of such a high standard. The seminar has taught me that networking isn’t even too bad, that people are willing to talk to you and give you tips and advice. I think that it has enhanced and helped my networking abilities to a point where I am confident in myself that I will be able to find a place within the media industry. I have learnt that I can pull off hosting a seminar that I do have a personality, which is a good fit for the industry and gives me the ability to talk to people easily. The missing step was always how do I find the people to talk to, and this has helped a great deal in solving that missing link. I now can actually see myself entering the industry (radio specifically) and am really excited by that prospect, this seminar series has demonstrated that our graduating class is highly talented and that whether you are a filmmaker, internet whizz or radio kid there’s a place for all us out there. I say bring it on, graduation 2012!

Overall grade:




“28 Minutes Later” Seminar 3 RMIT lecture series.

This weeks seminar was another knowledge filled adventure with a line up of great guests! This week we saw a change of pace from the film based “panel” run seminars to a different style. The group this week opted for a one-on- one interview with each guest finishing the seminar with a Q&A.

To begin to explain what i learnt and how this worked I will introduce the guests from this week:

Chris Gist- Commissioning editor ABC/ executive producer

Lawrence Leung- Writer/ Actor/ Comedian (Unbelievable and Lawrence Leungs choose your own adventure)

Matthew Saville- Director (The slap, Tim Wintons Cloud Street)

The line up of guests ws once again very relevant and people at the top of the field, who could not only encourage us with there experience but give us great tips on how to proceed into the industry. The seminar was kicked off with a really creative promo vid playing on the groups theme of “28 minutes later”. Next the seminar went straight into the individual interviews of guests which allowed the audience to understand what they all did and get a really strong view of there jobs in the industry. These interviews were not only informative but allowed for tailored questions to get the best information out of each guest. We were able to learn about Matthew and how he started at film school slowly making his way to TV direction because all the other students wanted to make “films” and didn’t look into TV. As he seemed to mention he wasn’t the most talented but he was always there and willing to learn. Lawrence Leung started his journey into TV through his stand up comedy which led to his involvement in the Chaser, which later turned into the creation of his own television series. Chris also had a really interesting perspective as he commissions work to be put on TV and he talked about this process and how he came to be involved.

The Q&A talked about how TV has more opportunities than Film as there is a requirement to have a certain amount of hours of Australian TV on air, this means that the content has to be made here. As Matthew mentioned (its) “A leap of faith, when putting on a TV show that has never aired before”.

This seminar was really interesting and the different set up of guests worked really effectively for the group. The guests had a great report which showed within the seminar making them easy to interact and even ask each other questions. I think the standard of these seminars has been so high I’m blown away!

Our seminar is next week so I hope that we can keep up with the pace and high standard that has been set.

“Digging up the truth” Seminar 2 RMIT lecture series.

So the second seminar begins and its off to another flying start. The bar once again raised and another outstanding seminar is demonstrated. First thing to be noted is the excellent line up of guests which led to a packed lecture theatre and a very excited audience.

The line up consisted of:

Helen Gaynor– A freelance documentary director with over 25 years of experience.

Dennis K. Smith- An award winning director, writer and producer.

John Safran- A popular documentary director, writer, producer and radio broadcaster.

Nicholas Hansen- A renowned Melbourne based documentary director, producer and cinematographer who has created short and feature length documentaries for the last 15 years.

Ok so these were the guests, with such a wealth of knowledge between them the group running the seminar successfully fleshed out how to successfully create a a documentary and handy hints to those wanting to enter the industry. The documentary started with a general question of “Why” the filmmakers do what they do. This led to further discussion about the industry of documentary and how one goes about finding a subject/ idea. In which the advice I took was that you have to look for someone with a story but also someone who is a story teller. Also that when first approaching a potential talent treat the meeting as though its not a big deal, dont make them feel pressure/ that its going to make them “famous”. Begin with a discussion and push them far enough but not all the way- save that for the actual shoot.

The discussion specifically about ethics really interested me, Helen talked about feeling bad and as though you are using people at times. You dont want to make them look or appear dumb/ ridiculous but sometimes thats on them. It’s a film line between ethics and dishonesty. As one of the guests mentioned which I think is really a key point in any documentary, it is a film and it is used for entertainment so no matter what happens its always about cutting out the boring bits and making it the most interesting story it can be.

The final advice given to those looking to head out into the industry was simple:

“Go out and do it, create evidence, do what you can with the tools you have”

or in John Safran’s words:


Overall a really slick, well run seminar which was interesting, engaging and gave positive feedback about the industry and what to do if you want to enter it. I think this was an insightful and well run and deserves top marks!

“Filmenstein” Seminar 1 RMIT lecture series.

So this was the first of the third year seminar series based on the theme “Pick Your Brains”. We plan on gathering media professionals and picking their brains about their experiences in the industry and their advice for us as soon to be graduates.

This first week was all about, bringing your ideas to life, how to go from script to production. The panel worked through all the stages of production and provided the audience with a really interesting perspective on the industry and how to best enter it. The panel had guests from all fields of film media, including director Glendyn Ivin, Sue Edwards the acting general manager for film Victoria and lastly Don Linke a producer. All of them had interesting examples and tips from their own experiences within the industries.

The panel was used effectively to work through the stages of production and paint an accurate picture of the industry. Whilst there were specific questions asked often the panel worked together to flesh out each stage of production, even asking each other questions. The great chemistry that this produced made for an interesting and engaging few hours.

In reflection I dont think the group needed the break for 10 minutes as it wasted valuable “picking brains” time and also meant that we were stuck for question time at the end. Also there were some technical problems with the powerpoint slide show which meant that the guests faces had a line of light half way over there faces. Obviously one of those first week situations were it was something we could fix for the next session.

All in all the seminar was highly informative and very appropriate. The guests were really interesting and had such a great background of work! Well done to this group I think they set the bar really high for the next few weeks of seminars!

comments on others blogs

Here are the 3 comments to other peoples blogs:

Peter Yak’s post about the office: Click here

Ruth’s post on Reality TV: click here

Dianas post about TV to DVD: Click here





TV audiences

The new creation of the internet has changed a lot of the way we view and consume television – we now can access up-to-the-second news reports, live stream (and download) TV shows at will via network-supplied catch-up services and the like, and the fourth wall has been broken down between the audience and the stars of the shows we watch as we interact with them via social networking.

It seems that now the tide has turned, the audience holds the power to cut a show, we can now pas judgement of a show to the second it is being aired through tweets and facebook, we also hold the power for the show to be taken away, this is all because shows have pressure to impress now, and if they don’t come up with the good the audience is going to tell everyone about it.

Niche programming has never been under more pressure, on the most part people who are interested in certain shows are already watching them via the internet/ download, so airing them will appear as though the show is unpopular when really it has already been seen and put away.

So now with the internet playing such a massive role who is watching tv? Heres a quote I found online: “Boomers watch some 170 hours of TV a month, or five to six hours a day, according to Nielsen Co.—compared with an average of four hours and 49 minutes a day overall. Almost half of boomers use digital recording devices and stream shows online.”

And another fact just worth noting: “Viewers 55-plus make up nearly 60% of the weekly audience for CBS’s legal drama “The Good Wife” and ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.” Even for high-school singalong “Glee,” the turn-on, tune-in, drop-out generation accounts for a per-episode average of 2.5 million viewers, or 21% of the total,”  Nielsen says.

Who knows where TV is heading, but maybe if the biggest audience is baby boomers we are going to the re-emergence or a whole lot of old school shows soon.

check this website, link to the article quoted above. 

Its Hybrid times out there

So as TV has progressed through the years, the genres have changed slightly as well- obviously not too dramatically but if you have a think about it you can now see this “hybrid” genre that appears every now and again, for example- “Docu- Soap” the combination of two successful genres combining to form one ultimate production. Combining factual information with confessionals, real life events and reality.

using the example above a very QUALITY… haha (NOT) television show is the series which has extended from its original release as the “The real housewives of Orange County” has spread to create 6 different shows all filmed in different areas of the USA.  The show is a voyeuristic look into the wealthy lives of these housewives, as they shop, get plastic surgery, gossip, fight and live lavishly. So basically i am using this to demonstrate one element of docusoap- whilst it might while a little thin on the documentary side of things i suppose if you think about the documentary in the way the show is shot and filmed- verite- style camera work, real people, real places.

This is another show that comes under the same umbrella as “Docu-Soap” whilst totally different to the glamourous lives the women in the housewives series leads it is a representation of how many different directions this genre can go. Something to be aware of though is that most docu-soaps are very much reality based, hence giving the illusion we are watching real events and adding to the shows suspense.