You do have to question why the BBC let themselves down with shockingly bad white balances especially in a controlled environment like a live link. Tonight I watched the ever enfolding news coming out of Egypt when to my horror we were presented with two live feeds coming out of Egypt, one from George Alagiah on the left and the other from John Simpson on the right.
Time and time again we are regularly treated to exceptionally poor technical output especially WHITE BALANCES…”We can see John that’s all that matters”. Well in my opinion it’s sloppy, from the cameraman in front of John to the technicians taking the feed back in BBC London.
One small LED camera light would have lifted this shot, instead we are treated to what looks like orange sodium lighting thats impossible to WB with and a shot of John Simpson looking more like Homer Simpson. Why do you bother training cameramen and women if you are going to produce this type of shot.
I realise George is in a more controlled working environment I suspect a hotel room while John is in possibly a local car park but technically poor shots like John’s let the BBC down as an organisation and all for the use of one camera light.
There is no excuse for sloppiness in television, we now have colour LCDs and viewfinders, the BBC have just taken charge of 200 Sony PMW-350’s and 50 PMW-500 camcorders all with colour viewfinders…there is no excuse !
I was reminded by my friend Chris that John Simpson and crew were told to leave or their lives might be at risk which is why it was decided not to use a camera light which is fine but my issue is with London itself you are not telling me that they do not have the facility to tweak the colour balance before they send it to the transmitter !