Friday, November 4, 2016

News from the Future of News

BBC News is attempting a quiet drop of its pioneering mobile video offering "Ten to Watch". There'll be nowt quiet about it if I can help it.

The concept came from deliberations on The Future of News, led, at no small cost, by Director James Harding. It's either just part of Newstream, or at least its only current planned manifestation. Newstream was a key part of the BBC Charter commitments, re-emphasised by the Director General to the Welsh Assembly only this week.

Its physical manifestation is little bits of video cut together, captioned and co-ordinated from a central desk manned 24 hours in the News Temple of Doom; these are available to invited users on mobile phones in a beta version. One of many madnesses Ten to Watch has engendered is asking reporters to contribute 'portrait' footage, to suit consumers who can't be bothered to tilt their phones - "and, if there are two people in shot, can they be close together ?" Ready when you are, Mr De Mille, came the enthusiastic response from the few remaining news camera teams. "Thanks for that Prime Minister, and now Dominic would like to shoot the same interview for Android...."

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