Sunday, September 26, 2010

Public Service Announcement (PSA)

During Weeks #3-5 in my Multimedia and Video Technology graduate course, we formed a team for a group project. Our mission was to create a 1-minute public service announcement (PSA) covering a topic that directly impacts our school district, campuses, staff, students, or community. After many discussions, we settled on a subject that is facing many educators today: the fact that what you post online can affect your professional career. As a result, Be Careful What You Post Online was born.

We went through many phases of pre-production including planning our theme, choosing and scouting our locations, composing our script and narration, weeding down our shot list, and determining the best camera shots and angles. Production involved equipment checklists (which came in handy), shooting many takes of each scene to give us options later during editing, modifying and reworking audience perspectives and camera angles on set, and attempting to produce a professional PSA while having fun in the process. Post-production involved project discussions evaluating the scene takes, editing the film, excluding scenes, selecting transitions and video effects, deciding on sound effects, and rendering a final product. Our web delivery decisions included posting on YouTube in a Windows Media Video (WMV) format.

Regarding enhancements, I think our video could be improved by an increase in allotted time. I believe we could have done a better job with location identification if the PSA had a 2-minute parameter. While I understand making the point quickly and succinctly, parts of our production feel rushed. When it comes to improving our project experience, I must say that we had an experienced crew that brought many skill sets to the table. The only changes that I can brainstorm are unrealistic. I wish that all members of our team could have met in person and been able to take a week’s vacation from our jobs to focus on this project.

Regarding copyright, we utilized various graphics from and a camera sound effect from Even though both websites offer copyright-free content, our team felt we should model proper copyright technique and document these assets’ origins.

With regards to collaboration and interactivity with my group, we utilized many methods. Communication was enhanced through TOKBOX, e-mail, and teleconferencing. Collaborating on our plan and design was facilitated by a Google Doc encompassing our storyboard, planning document, role selection, shot list, online meeting notes, suggestions, revisions, project updates, project schedule, and our final collaborative project debriefing. Technology truly supported our communication endeavors. While we all made a concerted effort to ensure exceptional correspondence, one team member was definitely the communication hub for our team. She kept us focused, organized, and on schedule. Thanks, Sandy!

Throughout this course, I truly enjoyed the new learning and working with my group. I had never been involved in a film production before. I have a friend in film production in California and I had no idea what was involved. Our 1-minute PSA took four people and a great deal of time and effort. I can’t imagine the amount of work and planning that goes into a full-feature film.

Our group video production project allowed us to collaboratively learn about the phases of creating a film. Planning, designing, producing, editing, and evaluating are the major stages. Communication and the use of technology were also intertwined in the process. As a result, I think we all have a greater understanding of how multimedia and video projects can impact teaching and learning.

Team, thanks for the memories!

Please watch our PSA:

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