I’m Ron Burgandy? or the reinvention of the “auto prompt”

while filming a tv segment for another subject, I noticed something which related to some other blogs I’ve posted on amateur vs. professional and networked technology in general. a couple of years ago when I was interning for SBS subscription television we had to shoot a piece to camera where the presenter needed an auto-prompt. in this day and age, the autoprompt itself has become obsolete due to technology like the iPad and iPhone. there is an application that you can download called autoprompt (or something to that effect) which does everything an autoprompt can traditionally do, but gives you even more options because you can control all of the settings from your iPhone. so as an intern, I got the delightful job of organising, running and controlling the autoprompt from the director’s iPhone – a job which I’m not sure even existed with a traditional auto prompt, I had to sync up the speed and restart the text according to the presenters speed/tone/errors etc. but it made me think, if professionals are using technology like this today – and we all have access to such technology as long as you have an iPad – then what’s the difference between an amateur production and a professional one? for our amateur tv studio recording we used the auto-prompt app and it gave the exact same effect as using a traditional auto-prompt…

not to mention I did the typical ‘keep reading what is on the auto-prompt in a presenter tone even though it’s not part of the script’ thing, needless to say, there is a lot of fun to be had with autoprompts-


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