Daily Archives: February 26, 2009

Line shot

Down and to the left:  Bill Liss, WXIA

Down and to the left: Bill Liss, WXIA

By Tom Tucker

In the noon shows Thursday, three of the four local stations led with job fair stories (live shots). But only WXIA did anything different — and compelling.

WGCL: reporter at job fair, Georgia International Convention Center, standing in the line for the standup.
WAGA: reporter at job fair, south Fulton county, standing a couple dozen feet from the line of job-seekers.

WXIA: Bill Liss, standing in the line with the job-seekers, interviewing them (and one person doing the hiring) right there during the noon show. Additionally, instead of a standard shot, photographer John Duffy somehow managed to get a top-down shot of the line, then zoomed to Liss and stayed on him despite the obvious distance between Duffy and Liss. Those shots were extremely compelling and not something you normally see out of any of the stations.

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The story could’ve been quite boring, and to people who have jobs and feel relatively secure, perhaps it was. The trick is to get people to be interested any way possible. Duffy and Liss worked together to humanize the story, show the scope of people at the job fair, talk to job-seekers and people doing the hiring without the standard “stand-up, cover video, vo-sot, stand-up bridge, vo-sot, tag out” method. It definitely made me take notice.

“Tom Tucker” is a pseudonym for an employee of an Atlanta TV news station. He submitted this story on condition of anonymity. He is not a member of any news team. In his spare time, he likes to actively avoid TV news altogether.