Wednesday, April 1, 2009


With all the dry runs taking place in Trinidad ahead of the Summit of the Americas, we thought it would be nice to give a dry rundown of the television coverage that would make the local tv stations look as good as their foreign counterparts when the Summit begins.
When US President Barack Obama arrived in London for the G20 Summit, here's how the BBC reported it:

1. Opening billboard then straight to field anchor live near Downing Street, positioned where we could see Obama's motorcade over his shoulder; he gave the headlines then an introduction on the fact that Obama was in London and was about to come rolling down the street;

2. Field anchor continues talking over live shot of Obama & his wife Michelle greeting UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his wife Sarah outside Downing Street office;

3. Field anchor introduces packaged story on Obama's arrival in London aboard Air Force One the previous evening and an outline of the issues to be addressed in the summit;

4. Field anchor introduces packaged story on massive security detail required, including shots inside Scotland Yard's surveillance centre and an interview with the officer in charge of security for the Summit;

5. Field anchor introduces packaged interview with the European Union President on what European leaders hope to achieve;

6. Field anchor interviews a political analyst who is there with him;

7. Field anchor tosses to studio (split screen) where business reporter on set outlines the concerns of the Japanese President;

8. Business reporter tosses back to field anchor who tosses to studio anchor who gives the main headlines and one packaged story;

9. Split screen with studio anchor and field anchor; field anchor introduces his packaged one on one interview with the World Bank President;

10. Field anchor tells viewers they will get live coverage of an Obama/Brown press conference in two and a half hours and they should go to the BBC's website for full details on the summit, as well as a profile of all the countries attending;

11. Field anchor tosses to studio anchor who introduces two packaged stories;

12. Studio anchor tosses back to field anchor who tosses to field reporter who is standing outside Gordon Brown's office for a colour piece on the meeting between the Browns and the Obamas;

13. Split screen on both field anchor and reporter, then full shot of field anchor who again tells people to go to the website for full details, and he tosses to the weather presenter.

This was almost flawlessly done in 25 minutes. The only hiccups were that the first packaged story on security measures had to be interrupted when they went to the live shots of Obama arriving at Downing Street, and when they initially cued the reporter outside the Downing Street office, she was not ready, so they went back to her eventually.

And not once during that entire show did we hear the same reporter more than once.