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University video standards - quality wise

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I got a bit of mail today from a firm who make very popular video mixers and production systems in the states, as they'd supplied a UK university with video kit for their BSc course - and there were the usual one-liners from the uni staff.


I planned on giving a few of the quotes - but it seems Google have it well spidered, and even one sentence gives the game away - and I don't want to do that.


I had a look at the links and watched some of the stuff and came to the conclusion that the stuff I did in college 5 years ago was equally as good, maybe even better. The fashion show consisted of a big room - no platforms, decks, lighting or other typical fashion show production equipment. Interviews seemed poorly planned and it was easy to spot people not quite in control. Lighting seemed random - as keys were frequently poor, and some sections = like a lady singing against a keyed in yellow solid background were shot single camera for the entire song, and the camera was static, zooming in and out. A couple of presenters framed awkwardly against a virtual background that didn't quite match - very basic mistakes and I expected more than this from uni students. Some of these people will leave with a BSc, perhaps feeling they are equipped to work in the industry - from what I saw, this is far from reality.


They managed 4 hours of consecutive output - wow! My 16 year olds in their first year managed a whole day, and in year two managed a 28 day RSL with very little staff input. I've seen the uni sports output on identical kit in the US and this was very poor compared to the US versions.


I'm really rather depressed with what I saw. I expected a University Programme, concentrating on broadcast would have been able to produce something better than this. However - many of the 'presenters' would have been at home on the BBC recently at the Diamond Jubillee.

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I've been to a number of uni open days recently, and one of them had a media production course as well as the engineering course I was interested in. At the end of the day, they gave out a combined DVD for the media and acoustics courses, supposedly with a menu on startup to select which course you want info on.


When I put it in my laptop I got an error message saying the DVD is corrupt and cannot be played; a message replicated on numerous other forms of DVD player.....and this is from the uni that have invested billions in a new media centre (trying not to be obvious and mention names). It doesn't give the best first impressions does it http://www.blue-room.org.uk/public/style_emoticons/default/dry.gif

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We've just had Ravensbourne2012, which is a huge showcase of all the courses at Ravensbourne from, Broadcasting to Architecture to Ideas and Fashion....


On the first day we had just over 1300 people in the building to look around, and about another 500 watching from home on our live stream, unfortunately this year we were unable to broadcast on freeview, for the first time in 20 or so years of transmitting the event, due to some technical reasons.


Day two was more of a fashion based day with other supporting acts and shows on around the building, on this day we had over 4000 people visit, which is a record for the building, and another 3000 watching the streams at home, another record.


You can see some of the content from the two day's here: http://ravensbourne2012.com/on-demand/


The only real issues we had with the event was the lack of broadcasting content, (4hours and 6 hours per day) lack of CREW (only 5 people rigged the whole of the major spaces (Level 4 and the Walker Space)), and the lack of cooperation from some courses in regards to building clearance during the set up of the event. Apart from these small issues the event was a huge success with industry professionals from all courses praising sand hiring students left right and centre...

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