News 8 Austin Fireworks coverage…were they drunk?

Last night we spent the 4th indoors at a friend’s house where much good food was had. When 9:30 rolled around, we turned on the News 8 Austin coverage of the symphony and the fireworks. The 30 minutes that followed had the entire room doing a Mystery Science Theater 3000 type commentary and finding it hard to believe that this was a professional television station. I work on a cable access show where everyone is a volunteer, and we’ve never had a show that looked that bad. The camera work was atrocious. Horribly chosen shots, bad framing, jerky zooms, etc. The worst offender was a long shot of the city with the fireworks going off overhead that was completely blurry and out of focus. In fact it seemed to get worse each time they cut back to it. This really begged the question as to who was directing the show, and why would they even cut to this shot, much less linger on it for what seemed like an excruciatingly long period of time. Several times. Luckily we all had a good time reveling in the comedy of how bad it was. Our best guess is that they since it was a holiday the people with training must have been off, and they must have let a bunch of new untrained interns run the show.

4 Comments so far

  1. ttrentham (unregistered) on July 5th, 2006 @ 9:20 am

    We watched the same thing. It was News8Austin, the 24-hour local news station funded by Time Warner, not Fox. I too was annoyed by those blurry long shots, although we were spending our time during those trying to figure out where they were shooting them from. Anybody know?

  2. Heath (unregistered) on July 5th, 2006 @ 9:38 am

    Thanks. Corrected. I wasn’t quite awake when I wrote that. That’s what I get for blogging first thing in the morning!

  3. Eddie C. (unregistered) on July 5th, 2006 @ 10:15 am

    I can’t speak for News8Austin specifically, but those long shots typically come from cameras mounted on building rooftops. They’re built to last, but still get a pounding from the weather; the lenses on the housings probably don’t get cleaned all that often, either, I wouldn’t think.

  4. ttrentham (unregistered) on July 5th, 2006 @ 2:37 pm

    Yeah, I was sort of assuming that was the case. I’d have to watch more News8 to see if that particular vantage point shows up again. Honestly, I didn’t think the rest was that badly done although the show itself seemed sort of lame. It appeared from the shots on News8 that the Austin Symphony wrapped up before the fireworks ended?

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