Monday, 23 October 2017

TV INDUSTRY how much do ads cost to place?

Have you ever wondered how much it costs companies to get their ads on TV?

Here's a great article which provides a range of examples, from the big terrestrial channels (thats BBC1, BBC2, ITV1, C4, C5 - though the BBC doesn't carry any ads as its funded by a compulsory license fee of around £150 a year per household) to smaller, niche digital channels...

TheDrum on TV ad costs.

Examples: a 3-second ad on primetime ITV1 can cost £30,000, but on digital channels such as the Horror Channel and Animal Planet daytime ads can cost less than £50 - you can even get an ad on some of BT Sports' less popular strands for ... £5!!! The article gives the rate for Hollyoaks on C4, a show with a similar audience to BBC3's Class.

Friday, 20 October 2017

Comparing 2 music videos Smiths v Sheeran


Its tempting to suggest viewing the EdS example with the audio off, but sadly you couldn't analyse the editing properly then...

There are many ways to approach analysing one, or comparing two, music videos. The key for you is to ensure that you give SOME consideration to ALL 4 Key Concepts: Media language, Audience, Representations, Industry ['Institutions'] - MARI Christmas!

Lets start with the one that may seem least obvious, INDUSTRY.

THE SMITHS: "This Charming Man"

ED SHEERAN: "Bibia B Ye Ye"

Your 1st question is: major label or Indie?
However, you can also look at the distribution of the video itself; its number of views; and the same for the track on the likes of Spotify.

To develop these raw stats, you can research the debate over how much/little the new media giants like Spotify and YouTube pay the record labels (who then give some share to the artist): you should be astonished once you find precise figures just how little they pay per stream! The other side of the argument is the big money that the online giants pay out OVERALL to the music industry: billions each year.

You can find lots of links (and even try specific tags such as monetizing - how artists seek to make money now that physical recorded music revenue has fallen so much) on my musividz blog. I blog a lot on the music industry, have a browse! You'll find themes such as the return of vinyl, the use of special/collectors editions, touring, merchandise (etc) are all vital - and a YouTube video can bring in good money if it reaches 8 figures (10m+) in streams.

CONGLOMERATE:  large company that owns other companies (subsidiaries)
SUBSIDIARY: a company owned by a conlomerate
INDIE: an 'independent' company not owned by a larger company. Some Indies do have subsidiaries, but because they are still smaller companies they aren't really thought of as conglomerates. Beggars Group is an interesting example of an Indie conglomerate!
MAJORS: the really big record labels, the ones that can afford to bid for the biggest music stars, are known as major record labels
THE BIG THREE: just 3 conglomerates dominate the music industry worldwide: Warners, Universal, Sony

The answer isn't always simple: the record label that produces the song/album/video might be Indie but sometimes they make a deal for DISTRIBUTION through a major record label.
Without looking any further into it, a simple Google tells me that The Smiths were on an Indie label, Rough Trade:
I'd need to investigate further to see if they were LATER (after they split up) DISTRIBUTED by Warner, one of the music industry's BIG THREE. Read more on who this is using this tag, or this post. Big 3 WUSup is maybe a way to remember them!

So what? Well, that almost always means much lower budgets for videos - although the impact of digitisation, specifically convergence, means that even low budget videos can look very high quality these days. You are shooting full HD, for example, and have access to 120fps video (great for slo-mo FX).

Here's where the Industry KC meets Media language:
Wow - what a *gorgeous* setting!
We can instantly see this is a cheap video - though the sheer amount of flowers might have added a lot to the budget!

Lets leave The Smiths for a moment and consider EdS. Another simple Google reveals he appears to have a more direct major record label link: Atlantic are his main label (he also has own label, GingerMan, through Warners), and it takes one simple right-click/open in new tab, to confirm they are a Warners subsidiary


1.      Music videos demonstrate genre characteristics.
(e.g. stage performance in metal videos, dance routine for boy/girl band, aspiration in Hip Hop).
2.      There is a relationship between lyrics and visuals. The lyrics are represented with images.
(either illustrative, amplifying, contradicting).
3.      There is a relationship between music and visuals. The tone and atmosphere of the visual reflects that of the music. [This is essentially Vernallis’ point. Anton Corbijn’s Joy Division videos are a good example; moody black and white to reflect the gothic music; so too the 2011 student Joy Division video [blogs]]
(either illustrative, amplifying, contradicting).
4.      The demands of the record label will include the need for lots of close ups of the artist and the artist may develop motifs which recur across their work (a visual style). [Richard Dyer again!]
5.      There is frequently reference to notion of looking (screens within screens, mirrors, stages, etc) and particularly voyeuristic treatment of the female body. [Can link to male gaze etc]
6.      There are often intertextual reference (to films, tv programmes, other music videos etc). [Kristeva, other postmodern theory]


Monday, 25 September 2017

KC REPRESENTATION Golden Girls and countertype v stereotype

You have 4 Key Concepts to carefully consider throughout the course: MARI...

The clip below contains a mix of stereotype and countertype for you to consider. This show was broadcast in the pre-digital era on a mainstream channel, therefore it couldn't simply target 'older' people as its primary target audience. How does the use of countertypes and stereotypes widen the potential target audience for this show?


Tuesday, 12 September 2017

TV DRAMA MEDIA LANGUAGE Class and Downton clips

Two short clips to look at, one 30-second trailer for Class (Season 4, BBC3) and ITV's Downton Abbey season 1 trailer (60 seconds).


  • a BBC3 (online via iPlayer youth [15-34] channel) sci-fi spin-off from Dr Who, but for YA audience (slightly older than Dr Who)
  • here's a BBC summary
  • there is lots of content, including fan art and other UGC, on this BBC page
  • ...and the Wiki.
  • Skip to the bottom for more videos which help put Class in context
HOMEWORK FOR MONDAY 18TH: Storyboard this trailer. Drawings don't need to be complex - stick men/shapes are fine. Denote (write) the basic framing (ELS-ECU range; 2-shot, OTS etc) and angle (LA/HA/MA/DA; worm's eye; helicopter shot). Comment on the media language used.

NEW DRAMA STORYBOARDING TASK: BBC3 is a youth (15-34) channel. BBC4 goes for an older, upmarket audience, and is launching a new drama series called Home, about the goings on in a retirement ('old folks') home. Your job is to come up with a storyboard of at least 12 shots for a trailer that (1) sets the scene (2) introduces 3 key characters (3) one of which is a terrifying bully. EXTENSION: If you have time, you can also add notes on the non-diegetic music you would use; how costume or props would signify or connote [symbolize] character; and any transitions or SFX you might use.
(A) TWIST Like Class, is there a twist or 'hybrid' element? It adds Dr Who sci-fi to the school drama, yours can be outrageous too. 
(B) CHARACTERS - decide on the age, gender and position (resident or worker, manager or owner) HERO - a resident or a worker/boss? VILLAIN/BULLY - a resident or a worker/boss? Male or female? Age? 3RD KEY CHARACTER -  a sidekick, love interest, perhaps the boss/owner? Male or female?
(C) SCENES TO INCLUDE IN TRAILER You might have one longer scene, but include some shots from multiple scenes just as you'd expect a trailer to. Think about shots that help establish the setting; the nature of characters (eg angles, two shot); create some mystery.



Shoes like Class arguably exist because of the high school/horror hybrid Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which also blended comedy and romance into its hybrid genre approach. We call an early influential example, almost a template for further efforts, an archetype.

Here's a longer Class trailer (the 19 seconds trailer is a teaser trailer) which should give you a better idea of how the show works.


Tuesday, 5 September 2017

MUSIC VIDEO Miley Cyrus task

We will explore and discuss one example as a class, and your task will be to summarise your findings on a PowerPoint for the lesson on Friday 8th September, including screenshots to illustrate. Homeworks will usually be for Tuesdays.

You have two weeks to complete/improve your summer work, submitting for Tuesday 19th September lesson, applying learning from Miley and other examples (as PowerPoint or Word).

The following 5 steps are one simple, quick way of exploring a music video. You should see the link to the Key Concepts (MARI). There is much more you could also consider, and there should be plentiful use of precise terminology as you go.

As we view, shout out if you see a shot type or angle we have not seen yet. Make a note, including the timing, so you can easily get a screenshot.
EXTENSION: can you link this to any of Andrew Goodwin's points? (He wrote a book in which he set out the features of media language that defines the music video format - you have notes on this)

What is typical about the media language we've seen in this video? [Again, it will boost your grade to draw on theory such as Goodwin's] What media language do we think is typical of music videos?
Is there anything that is unusual (atypical) for the music video format?
Does it make any difference to the media language if we think more about genre?
[As part of your homework, count the number of cuts in the video EXTENSION: work out how many cuts that makes per 60 seconds. HINT: Convert 3:41 to seconds]

Remember to use your handouts to keep key terms/concepts in mind (eg uses and ...? theory)
Who do you think is 'the' audience, and why? [Think about why I've written 'the' audience, and be specific with your evidence]

Is this stereotypical, counterypical ... or both?
Would a feminist approve?
EXTENSION: Would a post-feminist approve?
Are there other aspects or themes of representation you want to raise?

Explain clearly who/what this is.
What terms can you use from your film work to help explain the company types? Use these again to denote (state) and explain the type of record label or distributor that Miley Cyrus is signed to.

Now you have considered some key aspects of the video you might be able to improve, extend your earlier notes and analysis.
Perhaps you can see themes you'd like to write about under your own heading, not the simple single Key Concept-linked headings I've used.
Ultimately you will be submitting 12 pages of evidence which samples or summarises your research AND pre-production work (location scouting, drafting, costume, make-up, audience feedback etc). You don't need to immediately start on laying out beautiful Word documents (PowerPoint may help you to produce good notes quicker) - focus on building up well-evidenced/illustrated research that you will be able to adapt.

Over to you...

Friday, 23 June 2017

TV reboots

Even better this time round: The Crystal Maze, Twin Peaks and our golden age of TV reboots