Saturday, February 09, 2008

A Moving Image

I distantly remember graduating with a degree in practical film making well over two decades ago, and as I set out this week for Aberystwyth and the Ffresh Welsh student film festival I’ve been reflecting on the skills needed these days by anyone wishing to enter the TV industry.

It strikes me as ironic that I somehow, via the special effects film industry, outside broadcast camerawork and the marketing industry found my way as a specialist in a world where computers and moving images collide.

But the reality is, the old skills have not gone away. You still need brilliant writers, sound people, cinematographers, editors, but now you need them alongside great programmers and interface designer. On the ‘suit’ side of the industry being a wiseass lawyer is no longer as useful as being an SME or SEO expert.

It’s ironic in a world where lowering costs and targeting delivery are essential so that you need more, not fewer, specialists to be successful.

As a result I foresee the rapid development of the freelance support industry for the internet TV world. The ability to provision specialist services at rock bottom costs will be the key driver of this industry.

The film world has always been made up of an amalgamation of people who come together and work intensively to produce incredible results; the internet TV industry demands even more talent to be pulled into this conflagration.

The best and the brightest at the BBC have traditionally studied PPE (Politics, Philosophy and Education) at either Oxford or Cambridge, but a computer science graduate from Northumbria University may be the next Lew Grade or John Reith…

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