Pseudo To Cover Democratic National Convention
After full coverage of the RNC, Pseudo will cut back its live webcast for the DNC next week.
By most accounts, Pseudo's live webcast coverage of the Republican National Convention last week was a hit. It earned the company plenty of mentions in the mainstream press, plus made a little bit of history.
But on Thursday news reports were saying that Pseudo (http://www.pseudo.com) had decided to sit out the Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles starting Monday. Jeanne Meyer, spokesman for Pseudo, believes that recent headlines conveyed the wrong impression. She says that Pseudo isn't sitting out L.A., but merely sending less staff and opting not to use BeHere's 360-degree cameras.
"We're not sending as many people, but then again we sent nearly our whole staff to Philadelphia, " Meyer said.
Pseudo will not be following up its webcasting of the Republican Convention with the same type of coverage, but will instead be concentrating on the interactive aspects of the broadcast. The company would like its coverage to highlight the more interesting or controversial segments of the convention, such as celebrity appearances and political protests. And it is hoping to steer the conversation away from a completely serious discourse and more toward a critique of network coverage and political spin.
A mobile crew will canvass the floor for commentary, and will have staff representation in the Pseudo Skybox C40. A link will be set up between New York and L.A. so that Pseudo can take advantage of its production studio in New York. Pseudo has opted not to use BeHere's 360-degree cameras because the Democratic National Convention organizers will be webcasting the convention with this technology. This will allow the DNC to broadcast in both the Real and Windows media formats -- BeHere's technology requires the use of a RealPlayer plug-in.
The real story at the GOP convention, said Meyer, was that the Internet had arrived as a credible medium. The first interactive webcast of a presidential convention was captured from the same spot that the first television camera was placed in 1948. The Smithsonian considered Pseudo's coverage momentous enough to place one of the 360-degree cameras in its collection.
It is true that Pseudo will save money by using its in house production studio in New York. But given the apathy with which the public views national political conventions, that might just be good business sense. The staff at Pseudo was recently cut by 16 percent in a restructuring designed to move the company away from its multi-channel focus to a concentration on continuous live shows.
According to Meyer, the structure of the business had to be modified to create a sustainable business model--a few of the key elements at issue were structure, discipline, and focus. Meyer finds it remarkable that Pseudo managed to switch gears and restructure itself in only three weeks' time, but admits that change is tough on all involved.
Morale was said to be low after the announced layoffs in June. In fact, Gersh Kuntzman, editorial director of Pseudo Politics, is leaving the company today to write a book on baldness.
"The funny thing is that he isn't even bald," Meyer said. "But he did get a contract to write a book, and he is leaving to do so."
At least for one individual, it seems, it's better to contemplate baldness than to work at Pseudo.