Google+ Hangout On Air Advices

Tuesday, 8 January, 2013

20120924 Sir Salman Rushdie20130104 Melissa Carlson News 4 Forum

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.” – Leonardo da Vinci (in my Quotes I Love collection)

In this article, I plan to share with you some of my less technical but hopefully more “timeless” thinking based on my experiences in using Google+ Hangout On Air (G+ HOA) and what I’ve seen other broadcasters used G+ HOA since Google launched this powerful feature in September 2011.

1) LIVE On Location

G+ HOA used on location on the streets of Montreal, Canada. Many would agree that the 2012 Quebec students lead protests, in hindsight, played an important role in bringing down the Quebec government. Former KOMU news anchor Sarah Hill helped a freelancer named Jean Francois Desmarais of Canada to bring live and unfiltered street protest images to the world.

Montreal Demonstrations – streamed LIVE Apr 28, 2012

Montreal Demonstration Attracts Thousands – streamed LIVE Apr 27, 2012

My thoughts: Breaking news, live on location reporting can now be done extremely “light weight” by anyone without affiliations with any news organization. Broadcasters used to be the only ones to have the power to decide the how, who, what, when, where, and why of live reporting. G+ HOA and other live streaming tools have now given everyone that power if they choose to exercise it.

Broadcasters now risk becoming irrelevant if they ignore the citizens’ abilities to break news using G+ HOAs and other technologies and then distribute the YouTube Live video links via Twitter, Facebook, and Google+, etc.

2) LIVE One-on-One Interview

It is not easy to find an intersex individual in Calgary to interview on camera to shine light on this sensitive topic. So it was my pleasure to get to know the Netherlands based Maya Posch for some months before an an opportunity presented itself and I took the initiative to interview Maya to talk about her court case.

Interview with Maya Posch, an intersex person, re court’s decision to change her gender to female

In the following video I had the pleasure to conduct a social media interview with Royal Canadian Mounted Police Ontario expert Jean Turner-Floyd to learn more about police use of social media.

My thoughts: Similar to old-school journalism, we have to slowly and methodically build our network of contacts and experts over months and years, and when the opportunities present themselves, G+ HOA turn out to be great too to broadcast and capture these insightful interviews. I used the G+ community to help me to gather the needed information in a prompt and efficient manner and then used the G+ HOA to broadcast and record the interviews.

3) LIVE One-on-One Discussion

The consumption of shark fins and how the fins are “fished” (sometimes via the  brutal method of shark finning) have become a global issue in recent years. Highlighted by a recent series of photos and shocking AFP video “Outrage over Hong Kong’s ‘shark fin rooftop'”. Last Friday (Jan 4th, 2013), I took the initiative to arrange a live discussion with Calgary anti-shark fin ban group spokesman Richard Poon. I wore two hats in the discussion, on top of trying hard to be a fair an independent reporter and allowing Mr. Poon to present his points, I also spoke as a Chinese Calgarian that is distressed by my fellow Calgarians’ anti-shark-fin-ban actions.

My thoughts: First of all, old school journalism (connection & persistent) got me to take initiative to arrange a discussion with Mr. Poon. And instead of a private discussion or interview over the phone, I got Mr. Poon to agree to discuss with me LIVE in a public G+ HOA as I promised an uncut video of the full chat. The discussion can then become part of an informed discussion for the public to fact check and better understand the issues.

4) The “60 Minutes” of Google+ Hangout On Air

Before Don Hewitt created 60 Minutes in 1968, a show that “pioneered many of the most important investigative journalism procedures and techniques“, who would have thought such a show is possible, will be watched, and even made good money for the creator and broadcaster all at the same time??!! Note that I’m using “60 Minutes” as an example of something brand new and unseen before instead of its pioneering role in investigative journalism.

It is way too early to say what “shows” can become the “60 Minutes” of this Google+ Hangout On Air space yet but I have a few personal favourites. Maria Quiban‘s Fox LA G+ HOA and Melissa Carlson‘s KRNV News 4 Forum are two very engaging HOA shows that I am a frequent participant because I’ve a great time participating and watching. Instead of trying to explain in words, allow me to show.

4A) Here are three sample clips from Maria‘s Fox LA G+ HOA.

MyFOXLA Google+ Hangout: Howie Mandel Talks Mobbed

Howie Mandel Interrupts Fox 11 Reporter Live During Newscast

Salman Rushdie @MyFoxLA w/Maria Quiban

Melissa Carlson’s Jan 7th, 2013 News 4 Forum where the topic is about Connecticut town holding a drive to collect and burn violent video games. We were asked: “Does it remind you of the old book burnings? Do you have a problem with it?

4B) Here are three sample clips from Melissa‘s KRNV News 4 Forum

Melissa Carlson’s Jan 4th, 2013 News 4 Forum where the two topics were discussed.

NEWS 4 FORUM TOPIC: I’d love to hear what you have to sat about this story! Managers reaction = not fabulous.. Officers reaction? UPDATE: today officers eat for free

NEWS 4 FORUM TOPIC: Good lesson or Bad parenting? Are we raising a YouTube generation?

5) Concluding Thoughts

I think we are still at the dawn of Google+ Hangout On Air and the likes of  “60 Minutes” of G+ HOA has not been discovered by the general public yet. But that time will come.

The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed.” – William Gibson

I consider myself one of the lucky ones who has a glimpse of the future by “chance”. Lets revisit the quote I started this post with.

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.” – Leonardo da Vinci

My Advice: Go apply it! What are you waiting? Go do it!


Special Thanks: I haven’t gone through formal j-school training so I feel uneasy in giving advices to professional/aspiring journalists. But when my talented and charming friend Marissa Schwartz, producer at KRNV News 4 (NBC) who is finishing up her Masters at Reynolds School of Journalism, asked me to share some Google+ Hangout On Air tips/advices for her Masters project, I have no choice and gladly said yes. I just hope you are not harmed by my ramblings or as my friend put it, “my brand of poison“.

Howie Mandel Videobomb Fox LA LIVE Newscast – Why I’m Guilty as an Accessory

Sunday, 6 January, 2013

Howie Mandel #videobomb Fox LA LIVE Newscast

Did you see the talented comedian Howie Mandel (@HowieMandel) #videobomb Fox LA LIVE Newscast on Jan 2nd, 2013?! That was an awesome moment! And we (a few friends and I) were guilty as charged in coaxing Howie to make his impromptu LIVE TV appearance! Here is the funny clip of Howie Mandel #videobomb Fox LA LIVE Newscast!

So why are we guilty as charged?! What roles did we play in coaxing Howie? Well, you are in for a special treat! “Crimes/pranks” have never quite been captured like this, from the inception, to the coaxing, to the actual execution, and then the final we laughing our heads off all over a few short minutes! Have a watch of how we created this magical #videobomb moment right in our Fox LA Google+ Hangout!

I just LOVE Howie in his quick witted spontaneity, you just can’t fake stuff like this. I first met and listened to Howie live when he came to the yearly Banff World Media Festival in 2011 to receive an award of distinction.

Howie Mandel at Banff World Media Festival 2011

You can watch this very entertaining non-stop funny “In Conversation with: Award of Distinction Winner, Howie Mandel” (with transcript). Here is an excerpt,

Everything I’ve ever been punished for, expelled for, hit for, is what I seem to get paid for and now I’m being distinguished for it, but the thing is the people who supported me are the people who love like, and those were few and far between, my family and my friends, but when I got into this business, what’s amazing is it’s such a group effort so any cameraman that I’ve ever worked with, any script writer that I’ve ever worked with, any producer, network executive or anything, they’ve all supported me and made this possible.

All I do really, and this is what Woody Allen says, is “I just show up.” 90% of success is just showing up and I’ve always done that from day one, from when my career started. I didn’t even have a career, I wasn’t pursuing a careers. I’m still not really pursuing a career. I’m not, I showed up at Yuk Yuks in April 1977 I showed up at Yuk Yuks because I don’t dance, and didn’t like going to discos and they’d opened a comedy club in Toronto and I showed up to see a show and I was fascinated […]

I can’t speak more highly of Howie as great comedian and as a frank, blunt and honest person willing to talk about his own life challenges. And if you have time, also watch this insightful interview of Howie by Howard Stern which I watched to prepare my Google+ Hangout questions for Howie.

Concluding Thoughts about our Google+ magic

I’m a Google+ Hangout News Consultant and I’ve been using using Google+ Hangout since the beginning in July 2011 and Google+ Hangout On Air (G+ HOA) since its launch in September 2011. To me, G+ HOA is one of the most powerful new broadcasting tools available. But like in the world of cooking, even if you have a great knife, an awesome mixer, etc you still have to have great chefs and first rate ingredients to create magic!

And in our first 2013 Fox LA Google+ Hangout with Howie Mandel, that magic was created because our guest Howie rocked and we rocked! Who are we? We are our host Maria Quiban, and co-hosts Anthony Ramos, DeAno Jackson, Jimmy Louis, Kempton Lam (me), Kim Beasley, Matt Moore, Paul Roustan, Sheila B. DuBois, Stormy Henderson (screen thumbnail order from left to right).

note: This article is cross-posted by me at examiner.

Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon Google+ Hangout at Fox LA

Wednesday, 2 May, 2012

Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon - Fox LA Google+ Hangout - pix 08

It was my great pleasure to G+ Hangout with Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister+Danny Ayalon (Wikipedia) hosted by +Maria Quiban +Tshaka Armstrong at+myFOXla / FOX Los Angeles. The following is my question to Mr. Ayalon (I added a few words to give the readers some context).

Question: I understand you just attended the Jerusalem Post conference [in New York on Sunday Apr 29th]. And I’ve watched a video of sparks flying between Environmental Minister Gilad Erdan, and Meir Dagan, former chief of Mossad [national intelligence agency of Israel].

My question is about your view on the idea of an Israeli pre-emptive strike of Iran. Do you agree with Meir Dagan that [I paraphrase] “War is the the kind of thing where we know how it starts, but not how it will end” and Israel should exhaust all other means first before considering war?

Here is the full hangout video and you can watch my question and Mr. Ayalon’s answer (at 14:33 mark)

Background & Research material

The following are part of the research materials I gathered in order to ask an informed question. I tried to be as fair and as diplomatic as I could when asking my question without losing anything important in my question.

* May 1st, 2012 Jerusalem Post report of The Jerusalem Post Conference “Dagan and Erdan’s caustic exchange at the ‘Post’ Conference“. I’ve excerpted part of the exchange from a transcript of the acrimonious argument in a panel discussion on Israel’s security situation. To better understand the tone and context, I also found and watched a video clip of part of the exchange on YouTube. I think you get a sense of the heat from reading the words. (note: emphasis added, pix of Mr. Dagan via CBS 60 Minutes)

The Spymaster - Meir Dagan on Iran's threat - CBS 60 Minutes

An excerpt from “Dagan and Erdan’s caustic exchange at the ‘Post’ Conference“,

Keinon [Jerusalem Post’s diplomatic reporter]: But do you think it’s appropriate for him to make those kind of comments? He could have made them when he was the head of the Shin Bet (the Israel Security Agency)?

Dagan: First of all, I think he presented his position loudly and clearly about his refusal to the prime minister and defense minister. He didn’t announce it. It was in a closed room. To speak openly? (Turning to Gilad Erdan) I heard that a member of your party is now formulating a law… on behalf of my name, Dagan, preventing ex-people of the military and security establishment from speaking. Let me remind you of something, sir, what was started in Germany in the beginning.

You know how you are starting it; you don’t know how it is ending.

About Diskin, I believe that he is a very serious man and he is presenting a very serious point of view. And I know that serious point of view was presented to the prime minister and defense minister on many occasions.

[…] Erdan: Thank you very much, but I know that the Shin Bet is under the Prime Minister’s Office. (laughter) I also used to work there 15 or 16 years ago.

But the minister of defense still works together [with the prime minister], and if Yuval Diskin thought the prime minister was doing things so dangerous for the future of Israel, so in order to save Israel, he should resign, and not wait five years as head of the Shin Bet and then even agree to serve one more year.

And then, when resigning and when the prime minister does not accept his guy to be appointed as head of the Shin Bet…

Dagan:It’s not true. (boos) You are lying, sir. I am maybe not polite, but I prefer ministers of the State of Israel who speak the truth.

Erdan: I prefer that former heads of Mossad and Shin Bet won’t make damage to Israel…. That’s what I expect from you. Mr. Netanyahu goes around the world, and he never says that we are going to attack Iran, or when or where, but he is doing a lot of efforts in order to raise the awareness, and it is working.”

* Jerusalem Post Apr 29, 2012, “Dagan, Erdan trade barbs over Diskin comments

* Jerusalem Post Apr 29, 2012, “Former Shin Bet chief slams ‘messianic’ PM, Barak

* The Atlantic has an interesting and insightful piece “Netanyahu’s Bad Weekend

* National Post, “Netanyahu under fire from within over Iran strike

* CBS 60 Minutes “The Spymaster: Meir Dagan on Iran’s threat

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