Getting Started in your Media Career

 

Ready set go

Last night at American Universities School of Communications,  several media professionals gathered with TIVA to give out

some very valuable information about how to get your foot in the media industry whether your a college student or a seasoned professional

looking to switch careers. The panelists included:

 

Jason Villemez, Production Assistant at PBS Newshour

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/jason-villemez/10/a27/594

Kristen Edgell, Marketing Assistant at National Geographic

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/kristen-edgell/31/13b/b88

Laura Mateus, Campus Recruiter at Discovery Communications

http://www.zoominfo.com/#!search/profile/person?personId=1770693696&targetid=profile

Julia Beyer, Career Advisor for SOC Students

http://www.american.edu/profiles/staff/juliab.cfm

 

A variety of issues were discussed which included networking, resumes,

social media and linkedin, age and experience, reaching out and internships.

 

 

  • Networking, As Kristen pointed out networking is very much the name of the game. She very smartly made time to talk to every person she worked with, grabbing a cup of coffee and picking their brains. After these meetings she would inquire about other contacts that person might have that would be a good fit for her to talk to and then sought out those individuals. Another point that all the panelists agreed on was the value of a mentor and really getting to know an individual who will work with you and even advocate on your behalf.  Also, its key to stay in touch with those connections you make and to stay on their radar. They might be looking to fill a spot in an afternoon and if you stay fresh on their radar, you may just be getting that call.

 

  • Internships, the panel unanimously agreed that having at least one internship college is a great way to get some real world work skills outside of the classroom. Make sure that you really assert yourself in the role trying to learn as much as possible about the work your doing and present yourself well. Employers and companies respond well to someone who is eager to learn and want additional responsibilities instead of that person who’s just waiting to go. Many internships are now paying but even those that aren’t are still a valuable way for people to focus on their interests by getting to practice them in an adult setting.

 

  • Social Media, Obviously this is a huge facet of the media and business worlds and will only continue to grow. The best social media to present in terms of professionalism is Linkedin. The panelists all agreed that not only is it the preferred way to present yourself to new business contacts, its a great way to scout out potential employers and new relationships as well. A surprising note came from Laura who pointed that just because someone’s young and of the “plugged in” generation, that’s not a guarantee that they themselves are tech savvy or fluent in the art of social media. Twitter and facebook are also good venues to reach out to contacts, just be weary of  what they may see when they look at your profile. It’s smart to put your website and social media links under the header of your resume to show just how connected and tech able you are.

 

  • Resumes, one of the most important topics discussed was resumes and presentation. As Julia reminded everyone,  the basic look for a resume should be a header with your name, address, contact info and any links to your website or social media. This should be followed by education and most recent or appropriate work depending on the job your applying for. After this should come other work experiences and then your skills.  Unless you have more than ten years experience in the field, resume length should be one page. Grammar, punctation and spelling are also key since many people overlook these and will send resumes carelessly riddled with such mistakes. Also don’t put things that aren’t true, if your not familiar with software or a technical skill don’t put it on your resume. You may be questioned about it during your interview and not knowing anything will immediately make you look unprofessional.

 

  • Age and Media as a second career, Jason pointed out that in his position as a production assistant, one of his duties is to review candidates for internships and job openings. While there are the typical college students and recent graduates in that mix, Jason is also seeing lots of people in their late 20’s, 30’s and some who are doctors or lawyers looking to switch careers and that’s not a bad thing. Jason, who himself started in his job at the age of 27, says age is not an issue and what really matters is the desire to work your way up from the bottom. As long as the drive, willingness to learn, punctuality and professionalism are present, than people will notice your hard work and take you very seriously.

 

 

A huge thank you to the School of Communications for hosting this event and to TIVA for holding it.
SOC
TIVA
Further highlights of the event will soon be up on TIVA’s website at http://www.tivadc.org/



Google Fiber Goes Live – Kansas City Gets Gigabit Internet

Kansas City just became the fastest gun in the west when Google flipped the switch to turn on their new “Google Fiber” internet service. Google Fiber can deliver screamingly fast internet speeds of up to one Gigabit. Reports on the ground say that connections are consistently between 600 and 750 Mbps, with Wi-Fi speeds of up to 200 Mbps. Sounds good right, what if I told you the new service was only going to cost residents around $70 per month!

A New Standard

Google FIber - A New Way For a Faster World
Image Courtesy of Google Fibers Website

So based on the reported speed and pricing, Google is poised to deliver internet that is exponentially faster than the competition at a significantly lower price. It looks like the U.S.A. might finally catch up to other nations that offer affordable super high-speed internet to their populations. ISP’s are scrambling to catch up but it looks like Google Fiber may take off before the other guys can say, “wow that’s bloody fast.”

Oh yea, did we mention that this network will eventually be providing television delivery service as well? That’s right one day the Google Fiber network will be you one stop shop for cable and internet services. Cool, and kinda scary…

Industry Impact

What does all this mean for a small media services company like ours? Well for starters having faster internet capabilities in the U.S. will probably help our transcription services. We work with audio and video files hosed over the internet on a daily basis. The bigger the file, the slower the transfer, the slower the transfer the less efficient our business operates. Fast connections will allow clients to upload larger files without worrying about data corruption or timing out. On the other hand, faster speeds will allow our typists to download and complete their assignments much faster, thus allowing them to make more money at their job.

Take a look at the Google Fiber Blog for the official scoop.

http://googlefiberblog.blogspot.se/2012/11/google-fiber-installations-kick-off.html

Whats The Catch? Scales and Souls

First of all this system is just beginning to be tested in the real world. So don’t go buying your gigabit modem just yet, because it is going to take a long time before you have Google Fiber in your town unless you live in Kansas City of course. Furthermore, there is a big leap between implementation on a small section of a city, and implementation on a national and multi-national scale. All you guys out there playing Halo 4 online will probably be playing Halo 5 by the time you have a connection this fast.

When customer service goes bad...

Lets consider the other possible drawback here. How much do you trust Google to be your ISP and television provider? I mean sure, their mission statement is, “Don’t be evil.” But when companies this large start making moves beyond their original operational capabilities, you have to wonder, how big is too big? Do you really trust Google, a company you can’t even call on the phone to get help with any of their services to be a good neighbor for your community. Have you ever tried to submit a help claim to Google if one of their shiny products isn’t quite working like they say it should?

Spoiler alert, Google’s customer service sucks, and probably always will. Old Chinese proverb say, “Sell your soul to Google and you will wait 3 to 6 months for a response.”

The Future is Fast

Despite the fact that we have yet to see if Google can go big with implementing a system like Google Fiber on a large scale, it is a huge technological accomplishment that they have achieved. The future looks fast, screamin’ fast. Check out this CNN article about The Launch of Google Fiber if you want some more details about whats going on in Kansas City, Kansas.

Check back with our blog regularly for updates on this new development. Leave us a comment if you have something to share, and don’t be afraid to sign up to our newsletter to receive articles like this one on a regular basis.




CloudScript: The Future of Transcription Workflow

Word Wizards is proud to present our newest service, CloudScript!

Over 30 years of working in the media transcription industry has provided our team with rare and valuable insight into how and why people need our transcription services. We have noticed an important trend in the past few years, the name of the game these days is speed, convenience, and price. Production teams must to be able to work faster, more efficiently, and at lower operating costs than ever before to survive. Well, we have designed CloudScript to answer the call for a new solution.

Stated simply, CloudScript lets you click on any time code in your transcript and jump to that point in the audio or video file. Using a simple online form you can instantly convert any transcript with time code into a “media-synced” transcript. CloudScript is intended to make your workflow easier while writing, editing, producing or otherwise working with transcripts.

Watch our short video below for a quick demonstration!

Visit the CloudScript Home Page and Sign Up for your free trial Today!

 




Graphic Design Tech – Adobe Creative Cloud

In today’s digital world people want easy access to everything. Do you need to look at your bank statement? Load an app on your smartphone. Order a pizza? Log onto Domino’s and order away.

Going with that trend, Adobe has decided to add new capabilities to their entire Creative Suite for collaboration and distribution on the “cloud.” By paying a subscription based fee, one can work on projects in Creative Suite from multiple machines with the CS software installed. The idea that you can access your creative & design work from anywhere and at any time is a very intriguing prospect, especially for our graphic design department.

Graphic design tools go to the cloud!

Instant Collaboration

Creative Cloud for example would allow a graphic designer in Alaska to collaborate with their client across the globe at any time of day and on any computer they wish to access it from as long as the necessary software is installed. Or if you’re on the road traveling and only have access to edit your web design project for 30 or 40 minutes a night then you can easily log-in with your laptop work on it a bit, save it for later, and instantly send it back to the office for review.

Adobe has done it again.

Data Asset Security

Another positive aspect of putting everything on the cloud the risk of losing data is signifigantly minimized. If you have Adobe’s Creative Suite installed locally and it wasn’t backed up properly or if something haywire happened with your systems or hard drives then you could potentially lose a lot of
very important data.

Stay safe and secure in the cloud!
Putting your work on the cloud eliminates the risk of loosing your work in the event of a computer crash. If your computer won’t boot up then you can always use another machine and instantly access the cloud based creative design project you had been working on.

Cloudy Forecast

Clouds on the Horizon

The ease of use and accessibility cloud services gives the end user is amazing but I think what attracts people the most to the cloud phenomenon is the freedom it gives you. The very fact that a video editor or web designer could collaborate on a project anywhere and at any time is enough to attract customers
to cloud based subscription services like Creative Cloud.




Red Alert: Stop SOPA From Destroying the Internet

It is not usually our policy to get political here at Word Wizards. However there is a largely under-discussed item of legislation that could change the free internet forever. Our friends at WordPress covered this issue quite well, so we have broken our normal habit of only publishing original articles to bring you their post in its entirety. If SOPA passes, our entire domain could be taken down for something like this without any chance to prove our innocence. Luckily that hasn’t happened yet and we know our friends at WordPress will understand the use of some of their material to spread this message.

The following was graciously extracted from the official WordPress blog:

Help Stop SOPA/PIPA

Posted January 10, 2012 by Jane Wells. Filed under Community.

You are an agent of change. Has anyone ever told you that? Well, I just did, and I meant it.

Normally we stay away from from politics here at the official WordPress project — having users from all over the globe that span the political spectrum is evidence that we are doing our job and democratizing publishing, and we don’t want to alienate any of our users no matter how much some of us may disagree with some of them personally. Today, I’m breaking our no-politics rule, because there’s something going on in U.S. politics right now that we need to make sure you know about and understand, because it affects us all.

Using WordPress to blog, to publish, to communicate things online that once upon a time would have been relegated to an unread private journal (or simply remained unspoken, uncreated, unshared) makes you a part of one of the biggest changes in modern history: the democratization of publishing and the independent web. Every time you click Publish, you are a part of that change, whether you are posting canny political insight or a cat that makes you LOL. How would you feel if the web stopped being so free and independent? I’m concerned freaked right the heck out about the bills that threaten to do this, and as a participant in one of the biggest changes in modern history, you should be, too.

You may have heard people talking/blogging/twittering about SOPA — the Stop Online Piracy Act. The recent SOPA-related boycott of GoDaddy was all over the news, with many people expressing their outrage over the possibilities of SOPA, but when I ask people about SOPA and its sister bill in the Senate, PIPA (Protect IP Act), many don’t really know what the bills propose, or what we stand to lose. If you are not freaked out by SOPA/PIPA, please: for the next four minutes, instead of checking Facebook statuses, seeing who mentioned you on Twitter, or watching the latest episode of Sherlock*, watch this video (by Fight for the Future).

Some thoughts:

  • In the U.S. our legal system maintains that the burden of proof is on the accuser, and that people are innocent until proven guilty. This tenet seems to be on the chopping block when it comes to the web if these bills pass, as companies could shut down sites based on accusation alone.
  • Laws are not like lines of PHP; they are not easily reverted if someone wakes up and realizes there is a better way to do things. We should not be so quick to codify something this far-reaching.
  • The people writing these laws are not the people writing the independent web, and they are not out to protect it. We have to stand up for it ourselves.

Blogging is a form of activism. You can be an agent of change. Some people will tell you that taking action is useless, that online petitions, phone calls to representatives, and other actions won’t change a single mind, especially one that’s been convinced of something by lobbyist dollars. To those people, I repeat the words of Margaret Mead:

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.

We are not a small group. More than 60 million people use WordPress — it’s said to power about 15% of the web. We can make an impact, and you can be an agent of change. Go to Stop American Censorship for more information and a bunch of ways you can take action quickly, easily, and painlessly. The Senate votes in two weeks, and we need to help at least 41 more senators see reason before then. Please. Make your voice heard.

END OF ARTICLE

Word Wizards is united in our outcry against this unconstitutional limitation on our freedom to express ourselves and operate our small business. Our business would be instantly and negatively impacted by this legislation. So on behalf of our executives, developers, and everyone else that relies on this business for a good American small business job, STOP THIS MADNESS BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE.




SEO Tips: A Nightmare Before Google Sitemap Generator

Happy Holidays from your friends at Word Wizards! This late December blog post is dedicated to telling the story of an attempt at installing and setting up the fabled Google Sitemap Generator. For those SEOs out there wondering if it would be beneficial to install this fancy piece of open source Linux wizardry, we at Word Wizards Web Design have a message for you… DON’T BOTHER!

Now that XML sitemaps are the standard practice of most Search Engines, Google kindly offers a utility that can be installed on your system to automatically generate sitemaps that are optimized and ping Google with any new changes to your web site. They say it is easy, and requires no knowledge of advanced system manipulation or coding. “Easy”, as long as you feel comfortable opening a direct Linux Terminal Shell to your server, and using the command line prompt to hack your own site and install a mysterious unsupported piece of software! There is nobody at Google to call for help, and try asking your hosting service provider and their best tech support will scratch their heads and say, “we have to get back to you on that one.”

Luckily, we have our heads on straight in the web design studio. With seasoned programers, Linux users, and code ninjas all huddling over a secret portal to our sites inner workings, surely we could figure the thing out right? Wrong! With all of our extensive resources put to the task, we succeeded in the upload, the installation, but when it came time to set up the utility and begin the magical sitemap generating process, a nightmare of access issues, port securities, and unspecified functional errors plagued our hard working and frustrated SEO team. Thankfully, Google tech support consists of a series of very well optimized documents explaining the same information over and over again; we eventually realized we were on our own.

After weeks of this working nightmare, the effort was all for naught! It is a much simpler process to use an XML sitemap generator provided for free on multiple third party websites and do the uploading manually. If anyone has ever figured this little puzzle out, I am sure you deserve some credit. However, the lack of internet reviews or blog articles explaining the utility known as the Google Sitemap Generator should be the only answer you require.

Do your own sitemap and you will save your time, energy, and holiday cheer.

Bah Humbug!!!




TIVA-DC at the Government Video Expo

There were some impressive booths this year at the world famous Government Video Expo, held in Washington, D.C. Big industry names like Panasonic, JVC, and Roland put together incredible demonstrations of their latest and greatest products. Innovation was abounding, and at the heart of it all, TIVA-DC, long time supporter and organizer of the GV Expo, hosted a record breaking promotional membership drive and prize giveaway.

A topside view of the Government Video Expo
A look from above at the GV Expo

TIVA-DC and Discovery’s Military Channel, with the help of Word Wizards, Inc. was responsible for organizing two wildly successful panel sessions this year. This years keynote was “Lights, Camera, Military Action.” When you need to get footage of the real U.S. Military in action, you call one of the Hollywood Military Liaison Officers.

Lights Camera Military Action Guest Speaker Panel
Lights Camera Military Action Guest Speaker Panel

Ken Hawes, (Army Wives, Men of Steel), U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Colonel Jason Johnston (Battle Los Angeles, Avatar) U.S. Air Force Lt. Colonel Fransisco “Paco” Hamm (Transformers, Iron Man 2) and U.S. coast guard Commander Sean Carroll (The Adjustment Bureau, Deadliest Catch) offered a discussion and Q & A session talking about their diverse work coordinating the private video industry with The U.S. Armed Forces. TIVA-DC solutes all of our honored men and women who serve this great nation proudly, and we thank these distinguished guest for their contribution to this year’s GV Expo.

The TIVA booth signing up new members
New recruts for TIVA

The TIVA booth was hot like spicy sauce this year, as conference goers leaped at the chance to join our ever growing organization. Volunteers worked constantly to inform potential new members and sign up for TIVA – DC. TIVA sponsors donated several different items (usb flash drives, TIVA hats, and a gift certificate for dinner at The Woodmont Grill, donated by Word Wizards) to be raffled off at the end of the day.

TIVA's GV Expo prize giveaway
Jerry Griffith, Current TIVA-DC President (left) Tun Flaherty, Previous TIVA President (Center) Scott Gordon, Word Wizards CEO and TIVA Sponsor (Right)

Another successful GV Expo! Word Wizards would like to thank all of our TIVA-DC volunteers, guest speakers, and new TIVA-DC members who made this year a smash hit!