Just like the media industry it covers, Gawker Media has succumbed to the siren song of producing video content for the web. To that end, Richard Blakeley was hired to produce, shoot and edit original clips for Gawker’s stable of sites including Gawker, Gizmodo and Fleshbot.
The video policy at Gawker is that all clips should stick to only a minute, and stories need to be as timely as possible. When faux-testers showed up at Gawker’s office for a “Free Paris” event, Blakeley went from shooting interviews to putting together a tightly edited piece in just a few hours.
Blakeley said that when they were hiring a video producer for the site, candidates with traditional television backgrounds were taken aback by the turnaround times demanded. “If I can’t shoot and edit and post in one day, then it’s unusable.”
Regular features will include First Responders and the Gawker Video Look Book, with an upcoming series called “Inside the Commenters Studio,” where Gawker commenters are invited down for an interview on camera.
Blakeley, whose other projects include the mtvU-sponsored College 2.0 project, admits that he’s “not going to beat somebody with production value,” but will instead look for the irreverent angle to distance himself from the crowd, a freedom that Gawker not just allows but promotes.
As an example of what works online that might not on television, Blakeley cited a recent interview with Steve Wozniak. Rather than focus on Woz’s opinion on Apple products, Blakeley asked about his geek chic Nixie Tube and binary wristwatches. “If I came back to anybody in media, ‘Hey, I’ve got this great footage of Woz and his watches,’ they’d be like, ‘You’re fired.’ But I put this up on Gizmodo and we’re going to get a ton of traffic.”