So much reconstruction, so little affordable housing

With the borough of Wandsworth constructing unaffordable housing can Labour be residents saving grace in the local elections?

By Isla Russell, journalism student

London is a city of constant regeneration. Buildings are endlessly being torn down only to be built back-up again in more extravagant and costly ways. Wandsworth is just one borough of London currently going through a phase of housing regeneration. But with the promise of luxury housing comes the threat of a luxury price which leads present and future Wandsworth residents wondering, how will they afford their rent?

“I know that in the not too distant future I’ll have to pack myself and the children up and leave our home for good. I just don’t know where we will go”. Joanne Martin has been living on the Patmore Estate in Battersea for nine years. She is a mother of two young children who balances caring for them with working full-time at her local Tesco Metro. Her flat is a mere 10-minute walk away from the Battersea power station where a nine-billion-pound reconstruction of luxury homes and shops is taking place and she fears the repercussions of this distance. “The Battersea Power Station construction is only a few minutes away from us, and you know what’s going on there. It could be our estate they knock down next”.

Wandsworth has been under a conservative local government since 1978 who have over-seen the regeneration work happening in Wandsworth. However, the local elections on May 3rdcould change the Tories nearly 30-year rule.

The Wandsworth labour party have put affordable housing at the forefront of their campaign. Sitting with Simon Hogg, labour MP for Lechmere, it’s obviously something the entire Labour party of Wandsworth is passionate about. Whilst keeping perfect eye contact with me, almost as if he knows I’m skeptical of believing anything a politician has to say when there’s an election going on, he explains to me: “inappropriate housing in Wandsworth has gone way too far. There are too many unaffordable houses being built and I fear that this will cause people to relocate to a different borough of London, or even outside of London”.

A study by job search engine Adzuna found that the average Wandsworth salary is £29,009 a year, and this has gone down 1% every year. In 2017 the average Wandsworth house cost £796,214 to buy and £511 per week to rent. Regeneration will only push these housing prices higher which may result in Wandsworth residents having to leave the borough. But this is not what the labour party wants. Simon tells me: “we [the labour party] really want to give the present and future Wandsworth residents what they want. We want to work with them to provide homes for the community that is affordable, and stop Wandsworth being a soft touch for developers”.

The labour parties plan for affordable housing sounds great in theory but how will it fair in reality? And what will the outcome be for people like Joanne? “I fear it’s already too late for this building, but maybe with labour controlling this borough we may be able to stay for longer”.

Week seven live show review

I found this week particularly challenging in terms of filming the VT as I was working alone the majority of the time.  

 

After deciding before Wednesday’s lesson that I really wanted to do a VT package on International Women’s Day (Thursday) I approached my group to ask if they would be available to film on that day. Despite none of them being available I still thought that the story was too good to not do. This left me researching, planning, filming, presenting, and editing the VT.

 

I decided that I wanted to show a range of events that were happening for International Women’s Day rather than just show what was going on at LSBU. I was already attending an International Women’s Day breakfast on Thursday and thought this would be the perfect place to get some expert interviews and some good vox pops. Despite the company running the event initially declining my request to film the event, on the day they allowed me to conduct some interviews and get some vox pops and GV’s as long as a permission form was completed. This provided me with a really good base to build my VT on.

 

I did want to include what we were doing at LSBU in my VT and so set up a range of interviews with individuals and groups involved in the day. My first interview was with LSBU’s health and wellness advisor who gave me some really good information on what was happening around the university and how LSBU combats gender equality. Despite being an incredibly good interview, I only used a small part of what she had to say in the end VT because of time restraints.

 

I was granted permission to film a guest lecture that was being put on for International Women’s Day and an interview with the speakers. Periodical diaries were a soon to be charity that aims to eliminate the taboo surrounding periods, which is a potential VT in itself. They were incredibly open to speaking to me about their work and why International Women’s Day was important to them, which provided me with some incredibly useful footage.

 

My main issue with filming my VT came from doing everything alone. I was both camera operator and presenter on most of the filming days and found it difficult and slightly unprofessional to have to set up a camera in front of the people I was interviewing. This resulted in some not so clean shots and framing where you could only see half of me. I tried my best in the edit to fix these issues, however, it was incredibly difficult. I also found that I had a lot of good forage in terms of interviews and vox’s that I found it difficult to cut down to just under 2 minutes. All in all, I believe that my VT was a success and something that, despite doing alone, I am incredibly proud of.

 

Due to illness I did not attend the live show.

 

Week 6 live show review

This week’s live show did not go as smoothly as previous shows have, however, there were some ambitious ideas trialled that should be commended.

After reading an article in the Guardian about sex education apps I pitched the idea to my group to base our VT on exploring these apps and how useful they are. It was decided that I would present, Elle would operate the camera, James would edit the VT, and Olivia would be editor and write the article. We had great difficulty trying to arrange a time to all meet, however decided that Friday at 9:30am would be best.

Despite it not being part of my role as presenter I compiled all the research for the piece, including downloading the apps and researching each one. In addition to this I planned what we needed to film for the VT, and tried to arrange our expert interview. Prior to our filming day I also recorded the voice overs.

On the day of filming it was myself and Elle who turned up. Luckily, we were only filming on campus and so managed to record our PTC and GV’s swiftly. Despite ringing several sexual health clinics around the Southwark area all refused to provide us with an expert interview. However, on the day of recording, after speaking to several members at the Student Union we managed to secure a very good interview with the unions head of representation advice and insight.

James successfully managed to edit our VT into a good package complete with GV’s, voice over, PTC, and an expert interview. Unfortunately, we didn’t have any vox pops included which was down to both the time restraints on the VT and the fact that when we were filming there were no students willing/available to speak to us.

This week I was editor-in-chief of the show which meant I co-ordinated the heads of departments to ensure a smooth-running show. I think I had varying degrees of success in this role, however do believe that I could have done a better job.

The day began with a news meeting to discuss the VT packages and the upcoming show. My first job was to sort out changes in staffing. Due to illness, I had to find both a bulletins and sofa presenter. I decided to use Mariah as the sofa presenter and Nicola for bulletins.

After the meeting I sat with Charlie, James, and Nick to discuss the running of the show and set up and the running order in inception. We had some difficulty regarding which VT’s we should drop to ensure there was time for a two-way-interview and an on the sofa interview. In the end Charlie, as news editor, was very good at being decisive and ended up cutting the KFC VT as it was no longer relevant. Besides working with Charlie to sort out the running order and checking in with the other heads of department I feel like my role was very limited and I didn’t really achieve much else.

As seems to be the case every live show our rehearsal did not go well. It was incredibly disorganised, partly due to the fact that the scripts had not been printed, however there were also issues with Inception and trying the movement of equipment between VT’s.

2 minutes before the live show our VT wouldn’t work on the system as it had been incorrectly exported. This caused somewhat of a panic just before the live show aired, and the issue was not fixed before we went live. Luckily part-way through the show we managed to effortlessly fit the VT into a slot and play it.

There were many positives to this weeks live show. Theo in particular was a very natural presenter and came across well on camera. Nicola was excellent at filling in as bulletins presenter and came up with three very good and relevant stories. The skype call was very good and, despite a few timing delays, was an interesting segment to have. Additionally, we also had a guest on the sofa which provided the show with some additional content.

There were a lot of changes made by Nick as director. Some worked very well, such as having the bulletins presenter with the sofa presenters, however in the end it was slightly over ambitious. Additionally, we had a slight issue with sound due to diverted attention which is definitely something that needs to be looked out for.

Despite the slight issues the show was not the worst we’ve done. On the day reporters did well at getting their stories in on time, all presenters worked well in front of the camera, and the editorial team did a very good job at putting the show together with some very interesting VT’s.

 

Week 1 live show review

I was particularly proud of how our first live show went. As director of the show and editor of my VT team, I took a very leading role this week and believe that my hard work paid off.

This week my VT team was assigned e-sports. I found a story about a new e-sports play coming to London and took the initiative to contact the director to ask if he would be interested in being interviewed and providing us with some exclusive rehearsal footage. Despite being very enthusiastic about being involved, the show was not coming to London until 13th February and therefore would not be available to be filmed.

Luckily Sam provided me with a story about real sports team owners investing in e-sports. He sent me an article to read on the subject and using that, and some related articles I found myself, I put together a research document that I sent to my team.

Along with the research document, I also attached a plan of what we needed to film, who we needed to talk to, and how the PTC should be filmed. As part of my planning, I had contacted several e-sports bars to try and get a filming location. Only one bar, Meltdown in Angel, gave us permission to film on their premises so this was our agreed filming location.

As it had already been decided that I would be the editor for the week I left the role decisions to the rest of the group so no one ended up in a role they didn’t feel comfortable with for the first week. In the end, Olivia was the presenter, Elle VT editor, and James camera operator.

I had instructed my team that I needed the voice-overs and PTC scripted and sent to me by Friday. Because our VT allowed for very limited interview opportunities I also wanted to include some graphs as an additional visual. Therefore, I asked VT editor Elle to start doing some research into e-sports investment and begin thinking about graphs that could be made. In the end, I had to script the PTC and voice-overs as our presenter said she didn’t understand the story despite reading through the research I provided. As the editor, I made the executive decision that I would rather script the VT myself and use accurate information than risk producing an inaccurate and vague VT.

We filmed the whole VT on Saturday afternoon as soon as the bar opened as this was the only time we were all available. The filming went rather well although it was slightly rushed. Because it was mid-afternoon, and the bar had just opened for the day, there were not many people in attendance, and therefore our GV’s of the bar juxtaposed our voice over which stated that e-sports was a growing industry. Additionally, we found it difficult to approach people to do vox pops as the people who were in the bar were very intent on playing their games rather than speaking to us. This being said, we did manage to interview the bartender who was incredibly helpful and provided us with some very good information.

We managed to salvage a good amount of footage from the bar including several good e-sports related GV’s and an entertaining PTC that included a good filming sequence. I was disappointed with our final edit as, despite me expressing my want, there were no graphs added to provide an additional visual element. However, the VT was still entertaining and informative.

The day of the live show was incredibly stressful for me. As director, I had a lot of ideas about how I wanted the show to look, however, I am not the most confident when it comes to using the technical equipment which put additional stress on me. As well as this, not only were we showing VT’s on the show but we also had a guest, on the sofa reporter, and a live Skype call, which had never been attempted before.

The week leading up to the live show I had re-watched the past live shows to see how previous directors had set up cameras, lighting, etc. I then began to write down how I would like to present the show, starting with placing the cameras in different positions for interviews, moving the bulletins to in front of the production desk, and using the bulletins light for social media. A lot of my ideas were influenced by what Delina did while she was the director.

After the morning meeting where we discussed how the weeks filming went and what order the VT’s were to be played in, my first job was to sort out how the beginning interview would be filmed. This required me to liaise with several members of the team- presenters Elle and Saf, editor and chief Nicola, assistant director Charlie who was looking after the guest, and Pascal who was producing the piece. I had provided some plastic bottles and a bag for life for the interview which provided the piece with a visual aid. I knew that I wanted a close up of the bottles, however, had to speak to the presenters first to establish when they were going to ask a question specifically related to the plastic so I knew when to cut. Once this had been established then I needed to set up my cameras.

Setting up my cameras was arguably the most difficult part of the day. Camera 1, which is attached to the autocue, cannot be moved and therefore provides the staple shot of the presenters. There is then a camera for social media and a second camera attached to autocue for the bulletins. There is only one other camera spare other than these which can be manipulated for different shots.

Because we had two separate occasions where there would be additional people on the sofa I wanted to use a camera for a three-person wide angle and another for close-up’s. My original idea was to use camera 2 for the three-person wide shot and to use the social media camera for the close up’s. This would have meant not only moving the social media camera in-between VT’s but also having to adjust the height of it as well. After careful consideration, I realised that this was an unrealistic expectation to have of my floor manager, George, and therefore would have to think of an alternative method to get close-up’s. Sam suggested that I use the presenter’s camera for close-up’s. I could adjust the camera on the vision board after the presenters had introduced the guest to adjust it from a two-shot to a close-up, and then cut to camera 2 to adjust the shot back to a two-shot. I decided that this was the best method to use, and could also be used for the on-the-sofa presenter should I want to use it.

After setting up the sofa cameras my next task was to set up the social media and bulletins cameras. The bulletins camera was fairly easy to set up as I already knew that I wanted to change its position. The only issue I had with it was adjusting the height for it as I needed Delina, the bulletins presenter, for height reference. The social media set-up was slightly harder. I knew that I wanted to use the bulletins light to eliminate glare on the social media screen, however, this was a lot harder than I first expected it to be. I had to first move the light several times so that it wasn’t blocking the camera and was also no causing more glare. I then had to adjust the intensity of the light to ensure that it wasn’t causing a glare and was also not blinding the presenter. This took several different adjustments and a lot of trial and error. In the end, I managed to create an image that I wasn’t entirely happy with, but that was suitable for the show.

Once I had led the afternoon production meeting which outlined the running of the show I was eager to do a full rehearsal, complete with a stand-in guest. Annoyingly, the scripts were late to be printed so this delayed our rehearsal slightly. Once we began, the rehearsal was awful. It was the first time I had used the vision board fully to vision mix a full show and I was really struggling to both follow the script, cut on time, and adjust the cameras. The presenters were doing incredibly well at reading their script, and the VT’s ran smoothly, however, I felt like my role as director went horribly wrong. This did not give me much hope for the live show, however I still insisted on changing the angle of camera 1 for the interview.

I was incredibly nervous just before we went live, however, once I heard the JLDN intro music I found myself in full director mode, with my full attention focused on smoothly running the live show. Despite a couple of mistakes where I cut to VT’s too early, the show was very efficient. The close-up shots worked well, all the interviews ran smoothly, and luckily the skype call worked incredibly well.

Despite being stressful and sometimes frustrating, I was incredibly proud of how the live show went and believe that it is my greatest achievement to date.

Week 10 live show review

This week I was ill on Monday so didn’t make it to the first VT meeting. Instead I was given all of the information via my VT teams slack group chat. We were doing an E-sports VT this week which was going to be about loot boxes, specifically in the new Star Wars Battlefront 2 game. I was going to be presenter, Barbara was editor, James was VT editor, and George was camera operator. Equipment had been booked for Tuesday and that was when we were going to record all of our footage.

Once I had been told the story on Monday I carried out some research on loot boxes as I was not overly familiar with what they were, nor what they were used for within games. I researched into what they basically were, how they were used, and why there was such an uproar about them in the new Star Wars game. I used a BBC article as my main source of information. After researching I planned my piece to camera, as well as my voice overs, and some interview questions.

On Tuesday, we began by filming our PTC with the Battlefront 2 advert playing behind me on the screen in the newsroom. We had some slight issues with lighting for this as the screen was creating a shadow of myself that didn’t look quite right in the frame. To fix this we had Sam help us set up the light used for the bulletins, which we placed to one side of me as a way to give some extra light to the shot. It was a lovely creative shot that worked very well with the information I was giving in the PTC, and was something we hasn’t done before.

After shooting the PTC we went to the games department to interview the head lecturer there and get some vox pops and GV’s from people that we knew understood the topic and would have an opinion on it. We found it difficult to get an interview with the lecturer as we hadn’t booked in to see him and he was teaching all day as well as through the night. Luckily Barbara managed to catch him in-between classes and got a statement from him. Getting vox pops was quite easy as we had two third year students who were eager to participate, however didn’t manage to get a third as everyone seemed uncomfortable being on camera.

The final edit of out package was very good. I was impressed with our PTC and thought that this week our sound was the best it has ever been. We did forget to put in lower thirds however, and in one of our interviews there is too much empty space in the shot that could have been prevented with a slightly closer angle. Overall though I think this package was the most professional one we have done yet.

This week I was social media presenter in the live shows which I was slightly nervous for. It was the first time I had done any kind of presenting and the thought of not having an auto cue for help was slightly unnerving for me. However, out of all the presenting jobs I felt like social media was most appropriate for myself as it is slightly more relaxed and allows for more personality than the other roles.

I began my day by going on Twitter and seeing what was trending, and checking out the ‘moments’ feed- this let me know what the worldwide public were tweeting about as well as what was going on in the news. The first thing that caught my eye was a story about Kellogg’s breakfast cereal axing one of their oldest cereals ‘Riccicles’ in a bid to cut their sugar consumption by 40%. I saw that there was a mixed reaction to this as some were upset at outraged that they were getting rid of the vintage cereal, whereas others were glad Kellogg’s were making an attempt at making their cereals healthier. I thought this would be a good story with a good mix of reactions. We agreed that there should be something about Prince Harry’s engagement mentioned in the social media, however because it was announced on Monday, I had to find a way to make the story relevant. I found an article on that the Metro had tweeted about Stormzy wanting to play at the wedding. I thought this was quite a funny story as it was two completely different worlds coming together. My final story was about St Andrews day. I wanted to celebrate the Scottish day and wanted to mention some traditional Scottish items and end my segment with a bit of humour. I did briefly discuss the thought of doing a sports story as part of social media however, as someone not entirely enthralled by football, knew it was something I wasn’t bothered by and therefore wouldn’t be able to commit to reporting about.

After deciding on my stories, I wrote a script that I used to rehearse from. I had to keep an eye on social media to make sure that something more relevant didn’t start trending, however stuck closely with my script. I rehearsed a few times with Alice and initially found it difficult trying to remember what to say. In the end I realised I knew what each story was and I didn’t need to stick completely to my script, so ended up adlibbing a bit. I found rehearsing with Alice reassuring as we only had time to do a full rehearsal once before the live show.

This week the live show went very well. James was, unfortunately, incredibly ill this week, and Saf had to step in as sofa presenter. Despite being a last minute adjustment to the show Saf did incredibly well on the sofa and came across as very natural. The show as a whole went very smoothly with some very good VT packages. I managed to get through my social media segment with only a few stumbles. Overall it was a very good week.

“A smaller fat”

The change from exclusivity to inclusivity- but how far has the fashion industry expanded to fit everyone’s waist line?

 

Walking down the stairs of Jaks on Kings Road I immediately felt relieved that I had opted for a smart casual look today. I was surrounded by antique pieces of furniture while business men in crisp suits perched on 100% real leather sofas as they discussed the stock market and god knows what else. I felt slightly out of place, until I heard a warm voice call my name. I looked to the bar to see lifestyle blogger Chloe Pierre dressed casually and beckoning me over. She immediately grabbed my hand and led me to a leather sofa where we sat and discussed the industry she had grown her life from while it grew around her.

According to Global Data since 2012 plus size expenditure has grown by £800 million as, according to the NHS Health Survey for England, 26.8% of females have become obese since 2015. With the plus size woman becoming an ever-expanding consumer to cater for there is obvious money to be made from designing their clothes, but how inclusive really is the industry? Chloe admits that the fashion industry has come a long way in the past 4 years in accepting plus size women, however explains that there is still a very long way to come: “they use smaller plus sized models and I don’t think that’s right, if you’re marketing to a certain person than you need to show it”.

The argument regarding what counts as ‘plus size’ has been debated for several years. With plus size clothing store Evans starting their stocking sizes at a 14, compared to H&M and Marks and Spencer’s not classing anything under a size 16 as ‘plus’ how are clothing stores supposed to know how to market their clothes to the right sized women? No matter if you’re a “smaller fat”, as Chloe has been called before, or a size 32, YouTuber and plus size model Callie Thorpe believes that the answer is diversity. She thinks, “we need to make sure we have better fit models and more diverse models to make sure that we’re reaching the plus size consumer in a good way and not doing a one size fits all”.

45% of female shoppers buy their plus size clothing online, which means that the women who model their clothing must show an accurate representation of how the outfit will fit. However, the models showing us our plus size clothing are showing a size 14-18 representation of it, when most garments are stocked up to a size 32. Does this mean that women above a size 18 are supposed to play a game of guess the fit, wait 3-4 working days for their delivery, and if it doesn’t fit just shrug it off send it back while dealing with ill-fitting clothes? No, but that’s the way they are made to feel by the industry.

With plus size clothing being dedicated a small amount of shelf space, if any, in many retail stores, women over a size 12 are constantly being made to feel undermined and unimportant by the fashion industry. There is no doubt that there has been great progress made in the inclusivity of larger women within fashion, but they need to be better represented. The fashion industry has expanded but not enough to fit all of our waistlines.

 

Week 8 live show review

This week I was the editor of my VT package, which meant I was the leader of my group. As always, we began the week with a VT meeting on Monday where we delegated roles and decided on a story for our package. I was immediately drawn to the Church of England news report that outlined the new guidance for COE schools stating that they should allow children to be gender fluid without risk of judgement or labels. We quickly decided that I would be editor, James would do camera, Barbara would be the presenter, and George would edit the VT.

I booked equipment out on Monday to be picked up on Tuesday and instructed my team to ring around COE schools in the Southwark area as well as COE churches. Myself, James, and Barbara rang around several establishments, however no COE schools were willing to give a statement on camera about the new guidance. We did manage to secure an interview with a COE Father for Tuesday at 4pm thanks to James, and I spent the rest of Monday researching into the story and planning what needed to be filmed.

On Tuesday, I picked up the equipment and we began filming straight away. We headed to a church in Lambeth to film our PTC and get some GV’s of both the interior and exterior of the church before our interview with the Father at a COE church in Borough. Barbara hadn’t previously prepared a PTC to use, however managed to formulate one when we got to the church and delivered it successfully. We got some lovely GV’s of the church, most notably a shot of a stain glass window. We moved onto the church in Borough at around 30:30, and managed to conduct a 15-minute interview with the COE Father. We rounded the day off by getting vox pops, which proved difficult. Many people didn’t want to be visually recorded making a comment on the situation, which is why we ended up with only 1 visual vox pop and 1 voice recorded. Overall, I would say that the shoot went relatively smoothly and that myself, James, and Barbara worked well as a team. George did an excellent job at editing the footage together and managed to create a good package from what we had filmed. My only critiques would be that there was a great difference in lighting from the GV’s and interview to the vox pops because of time difference, and that there was no outro to the package.

In the live show this week I was assistant editor again which meant I was helping the editor (Alice) with running the show. At all the meetings that were conducted throughout the week I took notes on the various stages of the VT’s, running times, running orders, and general observations. After the Thursday morning meeting, me and Alice began inserting the running order and scripts into inception. My main job in this process was to make sure that everyone had inserted the running time, outro, and intro of their VT, as well as their lead in. After this I then had to edit all the scripts with Alice before they were approved. This process was something I found particularly hard this week as there seemed to be a lack of organisation between the VT teams regarding who was writing the lead in, which meant the script couldn’t be edited and approved as fast as last week. However, once it was I managed to print out all the scripts before the final meeting and run through of the show.

I would say that this live show has been one of the best we have done. Despite it being slightly chaotic pre-show with scripts and timings the end result was a positive one. The presenters had a very relaxed chemistry together which made for good ad libs in between VT’s. Jacob did well at social media, and Reemeka improved greatly on presenting bulletins from last week despite still seeming nervous.

Live show notes week 7

Live show opening week 7

This week I personally found the live shows quite difficult. Admittedly this is down to me being absent from the Monday briefing due to illness, and this therefore made the rest of the week harder for me to catch up with.

Due to me, and 2 other members of my VT team, being ill for the Monday briefing my team had no equipment booked out for filming. Despite me messaging them via slack regarding what out VT story was, who was taking on each role, and when we were filming, I got little to no response, expect from James who informed me that we were commenting on the Westminster sexual abuse scandal.  I, therefore, took the initiative to assign myself as editor, book out equipment, research the story, and arrange to meet my team on Wednesday at 2pm once I had collected our kit.  

When Wednesday arrived, I collected the equipment needed for filming and waited half an hour for my team to show up. I had slacked them several times to no response and was losing hope. Thankfully James arrived and we decided to travel to Westminster together to begin filming and the rest of our team could meet us there. In the short amount of time we had to film, as I had to leave for work that night, we managed to film a PTC and 2 GV’s. Unfortunately, nobody wanted to be recorded discussing the scandal that is Westminster and therefore out attempts to find vox pops were futile. In the end me and James had to admit defeat and come to terms with the fact that we couldn’t present a VT to the class on Thursday despite our best attempts.

This week has taught me that I am the organiser within my VT team who does the research each week and books out equipment. It would also appear that there is a lack of communication that needs to be fixed. Nevertheless I also realise that I need to prioritise university work before my part-time work as, had it not been for having to leave the shoot early, myself and James could have presented a VT. This upcoming week I plan to be a lot more organised with my team, and ensure that all of our filming has been completed by Tuesday for editing on Wednesday.

I was the assistant news editor this week which I found an exciting role. The previous two live shows I have been an on the day reporter which was a role I felt comfortable doing as it was simply writing a news story for the website. However, I have had no experience at being an assistant news editor and so felt like this role was pushing me to try something different.

Despite not being in on Monday’s lesson to write up notes from the VT meeting I was ready to throw myself into the role come Thursday. I began by looking on PA and in the news for any breaking news stories that we could report on that day before the VT meeting begun. At the meeting, my role was to write down notes, making sure to gather information about each VT, including the length of it. After the meeting, my job was to work closely with the editor of the week (Alice Heather) to make sure the show would run smoothly.

I focused a lot on working with Inception this week to make sure our auto cue was accurately set up for the presenters. Previous to Thursday, besides a one hour training session, I had never used Inception and was nervous to attempt to use it. Despite my nerves, and with the help of Alice, we managed to schedule in the show with all the auto cues and timings successfully. Besides working on scheduling the show I also helped Jacob with his social media content, looking at what was trending, and what would be of interest to our audience.

I believe that as a class we are getting better at the live shows. Our VT’s contain better content which address a greater range of topics, and are generally shot better. The actual day of the live shows runs a lot smoother now also with our presenters being a lot calmer and more charismatic on the sofa, and the director really leading the rest of the class on what needs to be done and by when. I would say that there is still an issue with sound in our VT packages, however believe that with more practice using the various different microphones this issue can be fixed.

 

Bloody Mary anyone?

Every women’s worst time of the month has now turned into their best, Isla Russell reports

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Fleurcup_and_tampons.jpg
Every woman’s true best friend.

Every month, for one week and one week only, a woman will experience blood, cramps, cravings, and pain. It’s the worst time of the month for them; but not in Israel. Thanks to ‘Bloody Hour’ at The Anna Loulou bar in Jaffa all menstruating women will get 25% off their total bill. All they have to do is approach the bar, tell the bar tender they are on, and the pact of trust will grant them their 25% off.  

But The Anna Loulou bar has a more sincere motive behind it then getting women on their periods drunk. Owner of the bar, Moran Barirr, wants to stop the childishness surrounding periods. When speaking to Haaretz newspaper she said, “There is no platform for addressing the subject of menstruation and there’s no legitimacy in the public sphere for discussing it without people immediately going, ‘Ick, why are you talking about that?’”. The idea is to normalise the discussion of periods for both men and women, and urge men to ask questions and gain a better understanding about the subject.

Luckily the ‘red river’ chat is becoming increasingly normalised. With the tampon tax in the UK slowly being discussed into extinction, Bodyform, the sanitary towel power house, has really been pushing the conversation forward by broadcasting the first sanitary product advert featuring blood. Previously all adverts used a less than accurate blue gel to imitate a women’s flow. Bodyform are not only using a red liquid to symbolise the blood, but their latest advert is all about normalising the crimson wave. It shows women in everyday situations dealing with the everyday struggles of being on the blob. #BloodNormal

Companies such as Bodyform and The Anna Loulou bar are pushing aside the stigma of periods and letting the conversation flow, encouraging both men and women to openly talk and learn about their bodily functions. So, get a 25% off cocktail (if you’re in Jaffa) and let’s talk about periods.

Week 5 live show evaluation

In the same manner as last week we started planning for the live shows on Monday with a meeting between all the VT teams. After a look at the news that day I found an article in the Evening Standard about a woman who eats with only £5 a week. She uses apps that offer discounted food from restaurants as well as food that is being given away for free from people in the local area. After discussing it with the rest of my VT team we agreed that this story would be interesting to pursue.

Our first task was deciding how we wanted to present the story to the audience. After much deliberation, we decided that there was little chance of an expert interview as the only person we could think of would be the woman in the article, so instead I would test the apps and be used as a case study. We decided to keep the same roles as last week- George as editor, myself as reporter and researcher, Barbra as camera operator, and James as VT editor.

Unlike last week not everyone was available to film straight away on the Monday, however George had booked out equipment for that day which I took to begin filming my trial of the app. My plan was to enlist the help of my flatmates to make sure the camera was correctly set up while they got shots of me browsing the app and potentially using it to get some food. This plan was unsuccessful. Unfortunately, none of my flatmates were available until late that night by which time the local offers had closed, and despite attempting to film alone I found it incredibly challenging to make sure the camera was in the right place and recording while also being in front of it. Instead I scripted and recorded our voice overs, as well as scripted the piece to camera and writing a brief outline of what needed to be recorded for the next day.

On Tuesday we spent the whole day recording. We successfully recorded 2 vox pops, my PTC, GV’s, and even managed to get some good footage of me successfully using the app to get food. We got all of our footage on that one day and handed the equipment over to James so he could edit it.

In terms of the success of our finished VT I think it was a great improvement on last week. Again, James did a very good job at editing our footage together to make an interesting package. Our sound was greatly improved from last week where it was incredibly distorted from the microphone being placed too close to my mouth when speaking. This week we used a lapel microphone for the PTC which made my speech clearer and not half as loud. For our vox pops I did still use a handheld microphone, however, after last week, I placed it further away from the interviewee so not to cause issues with the sound. I think we had a strong idea for our package, which was well executed, however I do think we should have explored more than one of the apps available for getting free food, and that we had discussed the negatives of the app in greater detail.

On Thursday, my role was on the day reporter again. While having our Thursday morning meeting a pre-arranged interview was mentioned as one of the stories that needed to be covered. It was about a discussion happening that night at LSBU about gentrification and regeneration in South London, and the interview was with one of the organisers, Dr Elena Marchevska. I was not immediately grasped by the story when it was mentioned as it wasn’t something I could see myself writing well- I personally feel my writing style is suited for lifestyle features and more light-hearted journalism. However, after the success of my article last week, Theo assigned me the piece.

I began by researching exactly what the discussion was going to be about as the brief was vague and used a lot of academic words I did not understand. My interview was at 11:30 which gave me an hour to research and generate some questions to ask. After researching I was still not 100% sure what the discussion was about and was feeling defeated as I wasn’t sure how I would be able to relate this article to students. I decided my best option was to out rightly ask as my first question what the discussion was about and what it’s aim was. I wrote several other open, yet generic, questions such as asking about why the discussion was important, how it would impact on the students at London South Bank, and how the panel was decided upon.

The interview itself went very well. Dr Elena Marchevska was a very open speaker and gave me lots of material to work with. Once she began talking about the event and what it was about it became easier for me to ask more specific questions about the event and it’s intended outcome. I voice recorded the whole interview using my phone so I could refer back to it for quotes whilst writing my article, and took Nick with me to take photos for the featured image. He managed to capture a couple of reasonably good shots of the interview that I eventually used in the article.

Despite feeling more optimistic about writing the article after my interview I still wasn’t entirely clear on the angle I wanted to write from, or even what to include. I decided the best option was to use the pyramid writing structure and include all the key information about the event at the beginning before going into more detail about the organisers and the outcome of the event in later paragraphs. I started strong with a quote and including who, what, where, when, and why. However, by 150 words I was running out of things to say and was running out of time to get my story uploaded to the JLDN website. I didn’t know how to finish the piece and needed to get it to at least 200 words before uploading. In a snap decision, I tried to relate the content to students and wrote some further details about future discussions on a similar topic to round it off. I uploaded the article to JLDN with a featured image, tags, and categories.  Although this piece was something outside of my comfort zone, and something I could have written better with more time for research and preparation, I enjoyed being pushed.

The actual live show on Thursday ran surprisingly smoothly. It seemed that after a successful morning meeting, where everyone confirmed they knew their roles, the whole show fell apart. People who were part of the production team were not always readily available in the newsroom when they were needed which meant the show couldn’t be set up properly, and certain people just seemed unfazed by the fact that the show was going live. Our show rehearsal was quite frankly a disaster. We never managed a full rehearsal with no interruptions as there were issues with the auto cue, the vision mixer, and again there were people absent.

Thankfully the actual live show was relatability smooth and a great improvement from last week. The presenters were a lot more relaxed and had a greater level of chemistry between them which seemed much more authentic, and all the VT packages were shown in full. I think the VT packages in themselves were also stronger this week as there were more interesting stories and the sound was a definite improvement.  I think the underlying problem of the show is people disappearing and missing the rehearsal. To fix this I think we need to devise a time for people to go on lunch breaks rather than letting everyone go whenever they want.

I am greatly looking forward to the next live show and to exploring a new role.