Monday, 29 March 2010

Why BBC2?

Why BBC2?

What makes BBC2 my choice of channel for my documentary?

the reason why is becuase BBC2 describes itself as such:

"We embrace all television genres, but it is our factual programming that has always been integral to the BBC TWO purpose. We aspire to be a place where viewers can expect to find the finest arts, history, science and human interest documentaries, as well as the best-loved formatted leisure programmes anywhere in British television - output that is intelligent and rich in content, yet thoroughly accessible and entertaining." (BBC2 Commissioning)

Their output is factually entartaining which means the programmes draw the veiwer in through the presntation of information but in a manor that is visually pleasing. for example two programmes of which I have been studying, BBC2's Mastercrafts and The Victorian Farm are both true to this format. They both include detailed information, Whether historical, cultural, or industrial, to which they then present with visual imagery and re-enactments to stimulate the viewer. So the information is not lost but translated in a different manner to keep interest.

but I am digressing here. To answer the question of why BBC2 is becuase it is the home of documentary on the BBC Of which is one the most watched channels in Britain. My documentary would be broadcast over the whole country but also on the channel the channel that is best known for documentaries.

Also BBC2 gives me a format to which I can lay the foundations of the documentary. it states in its docmuntary page on it's immersive, presenter led expiriences:

"Experiential and not thesis driven, Louis Theroux, Monty Halls, Kate Humble, Charley Boorman and Bruce Parry all find very different ways of exploring a world that, distant or not, feels relevant to our own lives. Who else can take us on journeys of discovery or lead us into new subjects? Travel has been key to these programmes and we're keen to keep evolving how these programmes work. What's the next distinctive step in travel and exploration? Kate Humble's journey along the ancient Frankincense Trail was a tremendous success and we're particularly interested in more female and more diverse talent to add to the mix." (BBC2 Documentary Commisioning).

It is these reasons why I believe that BBC2 is best suited for my documentary. Or in fact why my documentary is suited for BBC2.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

This week I have been looking at qualative audience research via online forums. This research is look at the popularity of the television programme “Mastercrafts”. From has been said on the digital spy forum “Mastercrafts” has been well received by the public with certain forum members stating:
“Really enjoyed it as well, and learnt quite a few things about wood craft into the bargain. Looking forward to this week's programme.” (mossy2103 16/02/10)

“I'm loving this programme - shame it's half way through the series before I found it!
Blacksmithing this evening - really makes me want to have ago (but I'b need the Fire Service on stand-by) ” (Windy999 26/02/10)

“I'm really enjoying this series. It's so nice to have a show on that isn't dumbed down and treats all the participants with respect. It gives you a real appreciation of the skill and effort involved in these traditional crafts too.” (Lyricalis 26/02/10)

These reactions to the programme show that there is a positive interest in the subject. What also supports this are the BARB reports on the top 30 programmes during week 1, week 2, and week 3 of February. Although the programme slips down from 15th position to 20th by week 3 it does show that it is popular. Now for the negatives of the programme. It has been noted that the soundtrack to “Mastercrafts” has been some what too obvious in how they want to influence the viewer.

“It was good, but would have been far better if it hadn't been turned into some kind of dramatic competition with obligatory blubbing contestant.
There was also the annoying presence of the de-facto irritating background music (aka: "let's tell the viewers what they should be feeling right now").
7/10 - should have been a lot better” (Iggyman 16/02/10)

If I am going to investigate why the craft industry declined and use a soundtrack then I will need to be careful what music is being used and how strongly it will influence the viewer.

Aside from this I have also been compiling a list of online videos that will be useful in my presentation.

This video will be useful for the presentation to get across how crafts are relevant in society and how important they are the species.

the following videos are of craftsmen from stock footage.

Monday, 8 March 2010

After looking into legalities from Ofcom I have two sections that are relevant to my documentary. These are section 5 due impartiality and due accuracy and undue prominence of views and opinions, and section 7 fairness.

Section 5 looks at impartiality in programming and favoring one side over the other which is transferable to the subject of the documentary.

5.12 In dealing with matters of major political and industrial controversy and
major matters relating to current public policy an appropriately wide
range of significant views must be included and given due weight in each
programme or in clearly linked and timely programmes. Views and facts
must not be misrepresented.

If the subject is to look at the decline of traditional crafts in Britain it would be pro crafts and could possibly present mass production and industry in a negative light. Although it is true that industry has played a key role in the decline of crafts it is not solely to blame, it is a means to an end and its presence in the documentary should be fair, balanced and not slated heavily. This is also important where crafts are concerned as crafts should not be over exaggerated in terms of there history e.g. blacksmithing is older than Jesus. Facts and figures involving crafts should be well researched and also be represented fairly and honestly.

Section 7 looks at how to treat individuals and organization fairly for filming purposes.

7.3 Where a person is invited to make a contribution to a programme (except when
the subject matter is trivial or their participation minor) they should
at an appropriate stage:
• be told the nature and purpose of
the programme, what the programme is
about and be given a clear explanation
of why they were asked to contribute
and when (if known) and where it is
likely to be first broadcast;
• be told what kind of contribution they are
expected to make, for example
live, pre-recorded, interview, discussion,
edited, unedited, etc.;
• be informed about the areas of questioning and,
wherever possible,
the nature of other likely contributions;
• be made
aware of any significant changes to the programme as it develops
which might
reasonably affect their original consent to participate, and
which might
cause material unfairness;
• be told the nature of their contractual rights
and obligations and those of
the programme maker and broadcaster in relation
to their contribution; and
• be given clear information, if offered an
opportunity to preview the
programme, about whether they will be able to
effect any changes to it.

This section will be relevant to treatment of contributors. Informing them of what the documentary whishes to achieve will help them give the correct information but will mean they have an understanding of what they are contributing towards (in case they have any reasons against speaking for the subject). Giving contributor information on the type of contribution will also give them time to prepare material suitable for that particular method e.g. doing a live interview when the contributor planned for an edited one. Also informing them of changes to the documentary is advisable because the change made could how the contributor’s works appear.

These points should be strictly followed to during filming but also included into the pre-production paperwork so that time has been allowed for these measures to take place.