Several months ago, following the slowly building success of my weekly “underground internet radio show” (as described by NBR) I decided to produce a live online “internet TV” election show.
I’ve been live streaming our weekly show sessions, and have made a couple of live video shows (though in about the lowest tech way possible). I mentioned my idea to a couple of my friends & collaborators on the show, Ben Gracewood & Dylan Reeve. Dylan is an old friend, we’ve made short films together – and won an award for one of them – and he works in TV as an editor on the most popular show in the country. He has a bunch of talented friends in the industry, and with his hard work and sustained effort, we made something quite special.
It’s not just me that thinks it was special either, our viewers said things like “The Discourse election special is going off.”, and “Most entertaining, loosely-based election coverage is at discourse.co.nz.”, and “Loved the Discourse live election show. Can’t wait for the next election now!”
We had our share of technology problems, but considering the truck load of gear that arrived needing installation, configuration, and operation, all in the space of just a few hours, I think we did pretty well. There were some problems that could have been easily resolved with a bit more testing, but testing was extremely difficult given that all the hardware only existed in one place on the day itself. So we didn’t have our on-screen graphics, diagrams, tickers, twitter box and so on for most of the show – but it all came up in the end.
If you didn’t watch the show live on election night, it is possible to watch it on justin.tv/discourse, but the recording there is sketchy, and broken up into quite awkward chunks. Once I get my hands on a good copy, I’ll chop it up into sane chapters, and put that up in a more readily digestible format – as well as making a highlights reel. But it will take time.
Here are a few behind the scenes photos.
Dylan working on the control centre for the show, on the other side of this desk is the Mac we used to do the live hookups, Skype and so on.
This is camera 2, mounted on a big swinging jib arm, some people in the chat room didn’t like it moving around, but it was so damn cool we had a hard time listening to those people.
This is Wendy, sound recordist extraordinaire, you can see a couple of the cameras – all Sony PDW 700s, there’s one more hiding in front of her.
And here’s a big giant gallery of grabs from the stream.