And later we’ll be talking to ………..

tv cam.jpgHad a blast yesterday afternoon when I was the recipient of some media training at Oxford Brookes. (This is the university, then a Poly, that 20 years ago, due to a computer error rejected me three times in the same week for the same course, but I’m largely over that now). The training was delivered through The communication training programme that runs out of Archbishops Council, the trainers Gillian Oliver and Andrew Greystone were excellent.
Anyway the training was a blast. We did outside TV interviews and spent time in the Radio Studio on a phone in programme. As ever I loved thinking on my feet and working out the best way to respond BUT the playbacks really showed how much more there is to know and how easy it is to look/sound like a complete Muppet.
Interestingly one of the key themes was the same as in preaching, selling, communicating generally i.e use story, paint a picture with story, be anecdotal. It was funny to see how boring a factual recital was, especially on TV. It also brought home how important it is to REALLY know your core message and to be able to deliver it concisely and to have anticipated what other stuff is going to crop up, like it or not.
I’m clearer now that I need to work hard in advance on the prep AND ensuring I know exactly what the format, length of piece, interviewers angle is before committing anything to ‘tape’
Meanwhile on the blog, I’ll continue to blather
This is Ian Macdonald, live from the Loft at Church House ……. back to you in the studio 🙂

3 Replies to “And later we’ll be talking to ………..”

  1. Did you discuss levels of honesty in reporting? Once I was at home watching local news when I saw myself in the background of a live interview! It seems the studio presenter was live, talking to a recording of an interviewer. The recording had gaps just the right length for the live presenter to ask scripted questions. Is that dishonest, and would you do it? (See also Songs of Praise Christmas special).

  2. That made me laugh, there’d be nothing like spotting yourself in the background of a live interview to know that there was something fishy going on.
    In answer to your question, no I wouldn’t
    Generally, we talked about this more in the context of being clear about what was being asked and being focussed on our response. Media has an enormous potential for being un-ethical and enormous opportunity to report and act ethically. I guess both of these exist and all the in betweens.
    In an entertainment led, sound bite culture some of the responsibility must be ours in terms of what we are choosing to watch.
    I’m going to be thinking about Ethics all day now (I was going to cite an example of where I though a Christian organisation was un-ethically misrepresenting itself but decided that would be not good (or ethical).

  3. I do like your Bridget Jones Stylee sign-off.
    I did a media course a few years ago that involved doing a radio interview and it was certainly an eye-opener and VERY useful when our church ended up interviewed by Radio and Channel 4 news!
    One of the things the guy talked about (ooh in fact he’s now on telly in “A Parish in the Sun”) was the average newspaper readership. Basically the CofE is in the style of Telegraph/Times/Independent but the nation as a whole tends to read Mirror/Sun/Mail. I suppose in th same way we’re more a Radio 4/Classic FM than Radio1/Capital/Radio 5.
    So how do we present not only ethically but in a style which is relevant/appealing to everyone not just our traditional readership.

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