Today Extra confirms move to smaller, automated studio.

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You heard it here first…. back in July in fact, that Today Extra was downsizing studios and moving to automation.

At the time a Nine spokesperson denied there were any plans to introduce such.

But today News Corp confirms that’s exactly what’s going down as the morning TV show moves from Studio 22, which it shares with Today, to the smaller, upstairs Studio 23 which is used for pre-recorded interviews with international guests and the 11am Nine News bulletin.

Automation directly impacts on camera, sound, lighting, floor manager and staging crews, rumoured to be a saving of around $1m a year.

Nine News boss Darren Wick told the Daily Telegraph, “It’s not cost cutting — it’s using our resources more efficiently. We’ve relocated the team into a fully automated studio, which allows us to redeploy the existing production staff into other areas across the network.”

14 Comments:

  1. Just proves how much harder it is getting in TV land. So as long the big bosses at the top don’t get their pay packets cut that is all that matters, sod the rest of the staff who work the network. Expect to see more clangers on Nine now.

  2. When I read this article in a newspaper (I know, so very old fashion of me) today during my lunch break I laughed out loud. One of my colleagues questioned my laughter. I read the article aloud. We then had a discussion on how this is a cost cutting measure since David and Sonia would share the same studio with “Today”. I would assume the camera guys simply moved from left to right or vice versa as one program finished and the other began. Just proves my theory how cheap commercial television has become. What’s next? Computer generated emoticons?

  3. BBC has been proving since at least 2013 (youtube.com/watch?v=0hkBAmn5yKo ) how things go wild (there are 2014 & 2015 videos too) when the bean counters believe robots can perform things that humans have been doing far better. Consistently getting a goof-free news bulletin to air is proving difficult for TCN and GTV. Can’t wait to see these automatons in action when there’s a guest or two, something unrehearsed or something slightly more than two people at a desk.

    • The BBC have used such techniques for the news since the early 90s, but they seem to have had more problems in the last few years compared to the 20 years previously.

      Sky News in the UK now uses automated cameras suspended from the ceiling.

    • Fair question. I’ve written about it before but appreciate not everybody reads / recalls every post. Basically it means a traditional studio crew is replaced by cameras that can be operated remotely from those in the control room. Many news bulletins around the country, which usually have locked-off camera angles etc. have moved to this format, meaning job losses. But when things go wrong and there is hardly anybody on the floor it all goes awry, and we have seen many bloopers over the years. If you don’t have a floor manager there (some do) and camera operators etc. then it can be hard to get you out of a tight spot.

      • To add to David’s post, the automation also replaces not just the floor staff, but most of the traditional control room staff e.g. lighting, sound, vision mixing, vcg/viz graphics, ccu, director’s assistant and often more mature directors. The most widely used system, called “Mosart” can run or “talk to” any piece of control room equipment, so long as that equipment is capable of responding to cues (known as MOS commands) that are electronically written & inserted as code lines into the computerised scripting and rundown system. This is all translated into a timeline (think of this as looking and working a bit like a home video editing system), which then runs items including video and audio effects, 2-way boxes etc back to back with the only human intervention being the “enter/return” or assignable “F keys” keystrokes on a computer keyboard. Occasionally, modifications are…

    • Its when they use cameras with no cameramen. I assume the cameras are either fixed or can be used remotely. It results in a clinical studio with less people and normally results in a poor quality show with lots of technical glitches. It will probably give The Morning Show and Studio 10 thousands of more viewers.

    • Saving cost of paying salaries and wages as there will be no crews on the floor to man the cameras all done by automation pretty much by a guy in a booth .the same cameras same angles will be used every single day the hosts will be like robots . Cost cutting. For the crew but the million dollar salaries of the two hosts don’t get cut .feel sorry for the crews that will lose their jobs it’s a crappy show anyways not like when KKK use to host the show that was spontaneous and fun .

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