eq your mic, for the love!

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photo credit: schrierc

The other night, I went to an informational meeting for my kids school.  I generally don’t go to these with high expectations for technical excellence.  However, this meeting was more annoying to me than normal.  I know I shouldn’t complain that much, since I didn’t get out of my chair and fix the problem…I’m trying to have boundaries and not get sucked into something I don’t have time for…anyway.

The mics didn’t work.  The lighting kept getting shut on and off.  The video kept switching between PowerPoint and someone closing windows to open other windows.  The Quick Time files weren’t full screen, and you couldn’t really hear it.  This is a laundry list of the stereotypical production value at most functions.  There are some very fundamental violations going on here.

Unfortunately, it gets worse.

Over half of the night’s content involved showing several lengthy video clips of a message given by a pastor.  I am sure the content was amazing.  Unfortunately, the mic sounded so terrible, with feedback thrown in for good measure, that it is almost unintelligible.  Here is a man who has prepared like crazy to give a talk that he was passionate about in front of close to a thousand people, and nobody can really pay attention because he doesn’t sound natural and the feedback keeps coming in and out to remind people how bad the production values really are.

Now add on top of this, his message has been video taped and rebroadcast to our event of several hundred.  His message is diminished because of the missed production values at the original event on top of the awful production values at our event.  I kept thinking about the missed opportunities for his passionate message because simple foundational production values were ignored.

What you and I do matters.  If you ever wonder if doing a line check, or spending time training your ears matters…it does.  If you get tired of your attention to detail going unnoticed or your insistence on changing batteries after every use falling on deaf ears….it matters.  Everyone in the room that night was groaning when each video clip started.  They know what bad production is.  Transparent production is just that:  transparent; invisible.

Take pride in the fact that all these things matter to you, and relish the idea that no one talks to you about  it.  It matters.

  • Patrick Nicholls

    Thank you for this post

  • Dan Smith

    Thank you Todd.  Love the last line, “Take pride in the fact that all these things matter to you, and relish the idea that no one talks to you about  it.  It matters.”  So true.  So easy to forget.

    • Thanks for the comment.  Last night made me realize that everyone in the room was noticing the bad, and that wasn’t good and great production at that meeting would have been unnoticed.  

      I think this applies to so many professions.  I just got a comment from a friend who does the painting around our building, and I am guessing that most people don’t notice his amazing work, but it is so easy to notice the mistakes.  

      • Dan Smith

        Sometimes I think that Jesus said Matt 6:1 looking at all the tech people.  

        “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven”

        This is a great reason to stive for that transparency.