Who wants video advice from a “newspaper” guy?
The Girl Scouts, that’s who.
And besides, I haven’t been a “newspaper” guy for more than a decade. More on that later. First, why did the Girl Scouts ask me to teach them about video?
It started when Heather Marshal, the leader of Cadette Troop 21191, attended one of the York Daily Record’s “How To Get It Published” seminars. That’s where we meet with members of community service groups and small businesses to guide them on the best ways to get the word out about the good work they do.
After the seminar, Heather asked if I might be able to speak with her girls. Later, she explained that they are part of a broad effort to interview women who been Girl Scouts many years ago. They will tape these interviews and create an oral history.
I have experience interviewing people, but that’s been as a newspaper reporter. The experience is much different with a camera rolling. For that, I needed to turn to my Visual Editor, Eileen Joyce, for some tips. You see, she heads up efforts that go well beyond newspaper reporting.
In our newsroom, we have four photographers, plus Eileen, who shoot still photos and video. They can do both on the same assignment if that makes sense. Or they might decide that only one of those tools is right for a given story. We have cameras that can serve as either a still or video camera. And we have some video cameras that shoot in such high definition that we can pull a freeze frame out of a video that is clear enough to be used in the paper and on the web.
Also, each of our reporters carries a video camera. At any time, they might want to get a quick interview with someone to complement their written story.
So Eileen has become an expert and a coach in the field of video interviews. It was a great educational experience for me to work with her to develop a list of tips for the Girl Scouts. Click here to see that list.
It was also a lot of fun to work with the girls on this. We got silly and noisy and a little crazy, and I think they all learned something that will help make their interviews better.
If you have a Girl Scout memory that you’d like to share, the Girl Scout Alumnae Association has an online form you can use.
If you’d like to attend our next “How To Get It Published seminar,” you can sign up here.