Tuesday, March 3, 2009

It's Done With Pixie Dust

James Lileks said something that hit home with me.

Radio requires an entirely different set of skills, and the people who think you can do radio by just talking are as mistaken as those who think you can do TV news by just reading.

As someone who has been in and around broadcasting - both radio and television - my whole working life, I can confirm the different skills needed for success. Radio seems easier to many because it’s just aural, but that’s also what makes it hard; you don’t have visuals to help fill the show. On the other hand, television - or any medium with pictures,such as the webcast of which James is a part - is more technically complex to produce and requires more of a team effort. It’s also harder to just wing it the way a radio host with a gift of gab can do if necessary.

I recall a saying we had at one TV station: While broadcasting may seem complex to casual observers, to those of us in the business it seems almost magical that it works.