This is our client Steve.
He is standing in the newsroom while the anchor on a different floor conducts a live interview with him.
Many of my own live shots were in our newsroom. Co-workers sitting at their desks surround you while you’re on live TV. Some of them are watching you on monitors. (Co-workers particularly listened to me while I delivered a live shot on national TV from our newsroom.) But sometimes people surrounding you are not listening. But they are loud. Reporters and photographers are discussing the upcoming fantasy football draft and an assignment editor is shouting to a producer what he heard on a scanner. Newsroom live shots are so common, people often forget you are live. As an intern at the CBS station in Chicago, I watched a cleaning woman walk between the camera and the TV anchor who was live from the newsroom.
You should appear natural on live TV, but newsroom live shots are anything but natural. You typically can’t see the person interviewing you. And if you can see the interviewer and yourself on TV, that can be distracting. I’ve seen many newsroom guests spend too much of their interview looking off camera at themselves on a nearby TV. You wear an earpiece to hear the interviewer. The earpiece often doesn’t fit perfectly. Sitting next to someone during an interview or a discussion is obviously more comfortable.
Remember the 1999 Kevin Costner film “For The Love Of The Game”? He played a baseball pitcher who threw best when he tuned out the crowd. I tuned out the crowd, but I went live almost every day. Tuning out the crowd is not as easy when you deliver a newsroom live shot only once in a while.
Practice. Stand in a noisy place at work or at home, where the distractions are everywhere, and pretend to be doing a live shot. Turn on a nearby speakerphone and request someone in another room ask you questions. This is similar to why teams practice with fake crowd noise on loud speakers before playing on the road before rowdy fans.
Newsrooms can be rowdy, too.
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