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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Standby... We are Going Live

Some shots need to be done live. Personally, I love the thought of having a reporter talking to the camera while showing the audience what is happening at that very moment. I think a live shot can enhance a newscast and a story. Whether a reporter is at the scene of an accident, in the middle of a protest, or on a pier by the beach… live shots make good TV.  

Last week we had the chance of doing a live shot in our 1pm and 6pm show. 

During the 6pm show we wanted to do an interview with USG President Rini Sampath about a diversity proposal that was being voted on at 7pm that same day. We knew that there was no broll to cover an interview and we couldn’t do a SOTVO. So we figured out the best way to tell this story was to do a live shot and interview Rini. Now that we knew we wanted to interview her live, our next thought was where. We figured out the best location was going to be right by where the bill was being voted on. 

We sent out our reporter and operator about 20 minutes before the live shot to set everything up. We had the phone numbers of both of them so we could keep in constant communication while setting the shot up. Everything went smoothly and our first live shot during the 6pm show was a success! 

Overall, I think live shots are challenging, but definitely worth doing. During a live shot there is a lot of technology to work with, communication on both sides is key, and the 4g service is not always reliable. However, as long as we are able to run through it a couple times before every show, I feel we will be in good shape. Three, two, one… we are LIVE.

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