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Archive for July, 2010

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

#NABJ10 Virtual panelist: Helping journos with the multimedia mindset

by Amani Channel

I’ve been involved with the National Association of Black journalists since my college days, and the relationships and friendships I’ve made over the years have led to jobs in the biz and other opportunities.

Being involved in a professional org like the NABJ is priceless if you ask me. The NABJ is made up of the best of the best journalists in the business and in recent years, it has been trying to prepare its members for the digital revolution.

Here’s an example from the 2007 conference of how the NABJ has been working to educate journalists about digital media:

While many journalists are great at fact-checking, storytelling, and making deadlines, the fact is that opportunities in traditional journalism aren’t what they used to be.

When I started blogging and producing online videos in 2006, I had no idea what I was getting into. In fact, I was a little embarrassed at first because bloggers didn’t have much respect or journalistic credibility amongst traditional reporters back then.

How things have changed. As the job landscape continues to shift, journalists are more and more having to develop their digital and entrepreneurial skills to survive.

Although, I didn’t make it to San Diego for the 2010 NABJ Conference, I did get to interact with my fellow journos on a panel that helped attendees get a better idea of why they should embrace technology, develop their multimedia skills, and think outside of the box for business opportunities.

I participated via Skype along with Natalie McNeal, and Retha Hill. Dr. Syb moderated the discussion with Rick Hancock and Julia Yarbough participating in person.

If you’re in the news business and haven’t thought about life after… Wake up and smell the smoldering remnants of yesterday’s paper.

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

The Kodak Zi8 was the star of my Cali trip

by Amani Channel

This time last week I was enjoying the cool Northern California Bay breeze. It was a great trip and just about every moment was captured on video.

You see, I told my brother about the Kodak Zi8 shortly after I bought mine, and he has become an evangelist. He now has four of them as well as all sorts of accessories, and even built a steadi-stick for his.

Though I’ve had the Kodak pocket cam for a few months this was my first chance to really play with the camera. I’ve been reading different blogs and sites where users have had issues editing the footage.

I’ve said it once and I’m going to say it again: If you’re serious about video, buy a Mac. The Zi8 shoots .mov files and whether you’re using Final Cut or Adobe Premier, video editing is a breeze.

Take a look at this video wrap up of the trip:

If you’re thinking about getting into the video game, the Kodak Zi8 is a win-win. It shoots 1080p, has an external mic input, and it is simple to use.

You’ll need to buy an SD card, and don’t forget about a tripod and microphone.

Affiliate Link Below

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

Cali bound: A break for a new year

by Amani Channel

It’s been more than two years since I last visited my hometown in Cali. If my memory serves me correctly, the last time I was home was for my nephew’s first birthday.

Lorenzo is now three. My son is 20 months, so to say the least, we’re way overdue for a visit to the West.

I think it’s a well deserved break. I’ve been busy with work, work, and work.

This last May, I graduated with my Master’s from the University of South Florida.

Public Broadcasting Atlanta is now re-launching Public Square Atlanta, which is the community engagement arm of Lens on Atlanta.

Visual Eye Media produced a series of mobile app training videos and a promo video for Apcellerator.

We recently produced a news package, and also helped the company Everywhere produce a live stream for Macy’s, and we just finished a political campaign ad.

Courtney Johnson Campaign Ad from Amani Channel on Vimeo.

Wheew. Now it’s time for to reflect on the last 35 years of my life, and think about what the next year and future will bring. My B-Day is the 22nd.

I’m looking forward to the break with my friends and family.

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

Celebrate the 40 Under 40 Awards tonight

from Atlanta Daybook
#atlpolitics #40under40

They are leaders of change, innovators in their respective fields and influencers among their peers. Amani Channel, Community Manager at Public Broadcasting Atlanta and Founder of Visual Eye Media, and Doug Shipman, Executive Director of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, have been selected by the New Leaders Council (NLC) to represent Atlanta during the annual 40 Under 40 Awards.

The NLC’s Atlanta chapter will host a reception to honor Channel and Shipman on Wednesday, July 14, at 6:30pm at Studio Clout, 144 Walker St, Atlanta, Georgia 30308. Food provided by The Real Chow Baby. Tickets are $20 dollars. The event will also feature Atlanta City Council President Caesar Mitchell and Georgia State Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan.

Food sponsor: The Real Chow Baby
Event sponsor: Studio Clout


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Thursday, July 8th, 2010

Hot vlogs and video links

by Amani Channel

It’s no secret that I’m a video geek, and apparently I’m not the only one who appreciates the power of visual communications.

Chris Brogan shares his thoughts on why video is such a valuable tool.

SMExaminer provides some social media, branding, and other business tips related to online video, courtesy Steve Garfield’s book.

Atlanta has a fairly active scene of independent video producers/vloggers, and of the best tech vlogs is TechDrawl. Dave Walters and his crew(s) are at just about every big event with DSLRs, lights, wireless mics… all the goodies.

As I livestreamed social media day last week, the TechDrawl crew was capturing interviews of all of the players at the event.

And speaking of vlogs, I just found this one to be quite entertaining. TheOreoExperience shares tips on how you can protect yourself from UV’s this Summer.

I think she overdoes it with the suntan lotion to the face, but I got the point.

If you have any favorite vlogs, send ‘em my way.

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

Happy 4th of July – my independence day

by Amani Channel
#4thofjuly #independenceday

As you enjoy the weekend to celebrate the 4th of July, I’ll be doing the same.

This is actually my independence day weekend as well. It’s been four years since I left local news full time.

How time flies. I have so many great memories, but my life changed when I moved to Atlanta in 2006.

My experience working at Black Family Channel opened my eyes to new/social media.

Though BFC shut down about 8 months after we moved, I managed to keep the bills paid through contract jobs, video production, and media consulting. I also was able to freelance as a correspondent for HDNews until that network shut down at the end of 2008.

I now work for Public Broadcasting Atlanta, and run a small business. I’m also looking for teaching opportunities since I just received my Master’s degree in Mass Comm from the University of South Florida.

What do I miss about local news? I miss all my friends who I lived and worked with in Tampa, Florida. I miss being well-connected in the community, covering breaking news stories, and being in the middle of the action.

Out of all my news experience, I enjoyed covering the 2006 Florida Gators National Championship win for Fox 13. That was a true “news tear,” but so much fun as you can probably tell from the video below.

In addition to being a newsman, I’ve had the honor to teach a digital media class at Kennesaw State University; I’ve traveled the country speaking and sharing my experiences and working on video projects for clients, and I’ve used my blog and content to re-brand myself within the social media community here in Atlanta.

Of course, I’m still telling and sharing stories through my vlog, but now that I have a son, it’s hard to think about going back to the news life.

A few years ago, I asked one of my best friends in news for his advice. He said, “Run like a track star” (expletive deleted). Ironically, he just got a job back in the biz in Orlando.

Would I go back? If a news station wanted to push the envelope for collaborative reporting, and creative storytelling. If a station valued quality journalism over flash and trash reporting. If a station respected the time, and life of its employees. That would be a dream news job, and I wonder if it even exists.

For now, I’m enjoying my independence. Happy 4th!


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