Thursday, 27 June 2013

TV News Cameraman Blamed For Everything.

I know I'm a little late blogging about this this story but, hell, it took me the two days to actually get over the crassness of this particular reporters way of going about his job to tell a story. Flooding in parts of India have killed and misplaced thousands, ruining already fragile lives and reducing many from poverty, to abject poverty. This story has since gone viral, but here's my view.

A little to the left... left... and... keep still.

Now we all know that the media industry is full of people who will actually climb over the shoulders of colleagues in the race to the top of the pole, but to climb on the shoulders of a poor, half drowned victim of flooding is taking it way too far in the pursuit of a good piece to camera. When caught out, he then blames the entire incident on his TV cameraman who was meant to frame out the unfortunate, wobbling man on whom sat this insensitive, ocean going prat.

Apparently, according to this post, the reporter has now been sacked by the TV news station that employed him, but I can't help think of the cameraman who let this happen in the first place, although I am unaware of the full circumstances of how this monumental balls up occurred at this time. It certainly wouldn't have got past me. I think the conversation with my journalist would have been something like this...

Journo: "There's no way I'm getting my new brogues wet, fetch me a poor flood victim upon whom I can perch..."

Me: "I'm sorry... What..?"

Journo: "a poor man... Perch... Shoes... My piece to camera awaits."

Me: "Perhaps we can use the bodies as stepping stones you utter twat, or take the only food they have... It's nearly lunchtime after all.."

Journo: "What are you trying to say..?"

Me: "I'm sorry, perhaps you are a little tired. Here, take this man's last vestiges of clothing to make a comfortable seat for your over privileged arse..."

I think he would have got the point that in no way whatsoever, would I be filming him sat upon a flood victims shoulders. Anyway, what news team goes into a flood hit area without the correct means of protecting themselves against the elements? A good pair of wellies would have been the very least he should have had and would have stopped all this stupidity.

Forgetting the snorkel equipment, my news field producer did the decent thing...

So I leave you with this picture of me filming our very own flooding in the South of England last year... We really needed to get close to film a good piece to camera. I know it looks shallow, but i am actually standing in about 7 foot deep flood water, and my field producer was a very kind fellow... We never saw him again.

You can watch the video here. ( TV station following up with copyright claims, so it might not last.)

Paul Martin is @ukcameraman on Twitter.