Video Camera Recommendations Wanted – What do you like?

Updated: April 11, 2013, 1024pm PDT

I posted this to Facebook and Twitter earlier, but wanted to include it here on the blog, too.

Camera Rec: Looking for HD cam with external mic input that records to SD Card. High consumer to low prosumer. Any thoughts?

I have some upcoming projects that call for an upgrade in my video camera equipment (and lights and microphones, etc), so I wanted to reach out to all of you to see what recommendations you might have. One of my main needs is some sort of external audio input for lavaliere and shotgun mics.

So far, I have received one recommendation over on Faceboook. I will add others as they come in. Be sure to chime in on the other recommendations if you have some further information or comments.

Many thanks for any help you can offer!

Recommendations so far:

New Media Questions: If you had a Blog, Podcast or YouTube Channel, what WOULD you say?

Often, when I talk with people about New Media and how they might use it, their first response is…

“I have no idea what I would talk about!” 

The truth is, though, we all have our special interests, hobbies, and topics that cause us to rant at the smallest opportunity. 

New Media holds so many benefits to you, your organization or your company. It seems a shame not to use it. So, hopefully, this question will help to draw out your inherent interests.

In my case, each and every one of my blogs and podcasts grew out of an interest I already had. Whether it was gardening, careers, new media itself or technology, once I recognized my interests, it was easy to create the blog and/or podcast.

Over the next several days, think about — If you had a Blog, Podcast or YouTube Channel, what would you say?

As you go through your day, notice what sparks your interest, what makes you rant, what holds a conversation together. These are exactly the topics you should be creating in New Media.

Leave your ideas, thoughts and comments below! I’d love to hear what you come up with!

Video Archive: New Media Answers – Show 011 – All Thing Video

From my video archives, here is a video version of the — typically audio — New Media Answers show I produced with Tracy Patton. In this episode we talk about all things video.

Can’t see the video about? Watch “New Media Answers 011 – All Things Video” on YouTube

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Video: WGA “Toot your own horn” New Media Panel

I was part of this panel a few weeks ago at the Writers Guild of America West here in Los Angeles. You’ll find my section around the 36 min point as well as during the small group discussions after the panel proper, but the entire panel is worth a watch.

Here is the info from the WGA web site…


In these challenging times, it is imperative that writers take control of their own careers. Be proactive, “do it yourself,” especially regarding publicity and marketing. Technology has swiftly changed, providing writers with new avenues to promote themselves and their work. Have you tapped in?

A DIY panel features publicist Henri Bollinger, president of the Entertainment Publicists Professional Society, discussing personal publicity vs. when to bring on a “professional”; screen and TV writer/author/award-winning columnist W. Bruce Cameron (8 Simple Rules, A Dog’s Purpose); Zoanne Clack (Executive Producer – “Grey’s Anatomy” and former Writers’ Program student), Gregg Kilday (film editor at The Hollywood Reporter); psychotherapist Rebecca Roy ( to broach writers’ resistance to self-promotion; and independent new media consultant Douglas Welch (also a Writers’ Program instructor) addressing new media and social marketing platforms.

Panel followed by smaller hands-on breakout sessions. Moderated by Bill Taub.



How do you make a living in New Media?

Listen to the podcast

How do you make a living in New Media? I received this great question a few weeks ago and wanted to answer it publicly in hopes that others may benefit.

Here is the question…

“Hi, Mr. Welch. I’m a mom. My son is going to college majoring in (guess what) new media. As a parent I’m wondering how my son is going to make a living in new media, and not feeling like I knew enough about it, I found your site. I watched your speech to the Independent Filmmakers, and I have a clearer understanding of what new media is and the best way to use it, so thanks for that. However my fundamental question remains: how does one make a living in this field? Please help. Thank you.”

..and here is my answer…

There are several ways of building a career based on New Media. Two typical career paths include:

  1. Taking the entertainment route and becoming a producer of your own New Media content, such as producing your own audio or video show
  2. Using your New Media skills to help others produce their content.

Entertainment Path

Here in Los Angeles, many people are taking the traditional entertainment industry approach and attempting to create their own New Media properties in hopes that they can gather an audience, support themselves and perhaps even rival the success of mainstream entertainment.I find this a harder road to follow, as there is a lot of competition, but there can be great rewards for those who hit upon the right property.

This approach to a New Media career tends to be the preferred method for those working, or hoping to work, in the entertainment industry, such as actors, comedians and musicians, as they already have a talent to showcase and New Media provides them an easy distribution method for their work. They can use New Media to show “what they do and how well they do it” to a large number of people and gather an audience around them. This can then lead to mainstream exposure or, in some cases, provide significant income to support themselves from their New Media shows, along with the income from ancillary products like live shows and merchandise.

It is important to remember that there are levels of success in the entertainment industry, despite its focus on the “star system.” While a New Media personality may not garner the money and attention of a Hollywood star, they may find that they can gather a dedicated audience who see them as a star in their own, smaller world, and also provide enough monetary support to provide them a life which many would see as successful. You shouldn’t get caught in the trap of thinking that you must become the next Madonna or Kevin Smith or Jon Stewart. There are many levels of success and New Media could make you very successful indeed.

Consulting Path

Another approach to a New Media career is to become an employee or consult with those people who want to establish their own New Media presence. Your skills at creating and managing New Media are in demand from a wide variety of companies and clients. This is the direction my own New Media career has taken. While I produce my own shows around my personal interests, my long experience in podcasting and New Media allows me to help others create their own New Media properties as well as speak and instruct on New Media topics.

The major benefit to this type of New Media career is that, much like computer consulting, you can work in a wide variety of companies and industries. You might work creating video promotions for a major retailer or develop in-house video materials for a local manufacturer. You could help a local chef build their profile through an Internet cooking show or teach a non-profit how to better communicate with their supporters. Since New Media crosses all boundaries you can look for ways to combine your New Media knowledge with other expertise you might have.

For example, if you are a paralegal or have other law-related experience, you bring more to the table than just your New Media skills. You are well positioned to work with a law firm or law-related public advocacy group as you have skills and expertise on both sides of the equation. Perhaps your are a musician. You bring specific knowledge to your consulting that other musicians can use. This combination of skills give you many more options when choosing between jobs and can open up significant opportunities.

Whether you choose the entertainment or New Media consulting path through your career, I think you are positioning yourself well for the future. Mainstream entertainment is fragmenting under its own weight and high production costs, so I see New Media as a rising market while mainstream production is a diminishing one. There are simply fewer and fewer opportunities in mainstream production with each passing year, so careers there become more and more difficult. New Media provides the ability to combine your New Media expertise with your other talents and create your own unique career based on your own wants, needs and desires. This flexibility is one of the best features of developing a career using your New Media skills.

So, get out there and start building your New Media career today! I think you will be pleasantly surprised at the opportunities that are available to you.

Quora Answers: If I wanted to get my podcast sponsored, how do I do that?

The first step is documenting your audience and the amount of traffic your podcast attracts. With this information, you will be able to develop a press kit which you can use to approach potential sponsors. They will want to know that you are speaking to their potential buyers on a regular basis.

Gathering demographic info for your listeners can be difficult, as podcast listeners seem to be notoriously shy of surveys. You can hold a contest as a way to increase survey response, though.

As for podcast statistics, you will probably need your raw log files in order to capture the total number of downloads for each episode. Then you can aggregate them to create your total monthly downloads. These downloads will include both new shows and older shows as people do not often listen in order, or find older episodes and listen directly from the web site. This number will show you the number of “impressions” you might be able to fulfill for a given sponsor.

Make sure when you develop any sponsorship campaign that the sponsor has a way to track exactly how many buyers came from your podcast. There should be a unique product code or coupon which they can track on their end so they don’t have to rely on you for that reporting. If they are tracking it themselves they will be much more trusting of that info.

Here is an example of a podcasting press kit –…

Read more answers to this question

Question: Live Streaming – What do I need?


I get a lot of questions every day and here is a one from today — via email.

  • Q: I have some questions about live video streaming. They may seem silly since I am just learning my way around podcasting. We are getting ready to purchase a flipcam and microphone. Will this be enough to do a live webcast? Any direction would be helpful.
  • A: For live streaming you will need built-in laptop webcam, a detachable USB webcam or standard camcorder with a Firewire connection (most have these). The Flip will not work as a streaming camera. It only functions as a camcorder.

    I typically use my old Digital8 Camcorder as my live streaming source but any of the above will work fine. A camcorder brings the added benefit of better optics and a zoom lens.

    Choose whatever you have or whatever best fits you needs.

    Any microphone you can connect to your computer, either directly via USB or through a USB mixing board, will work for the live stream. I have used my Blue Snowball mic, set in Omnidirectional mode to stream live shows. It seems to capture the “room sound” quite well. You can also pull audio off the house sound mixer, if you have that option.

    Let me know if there are any other questions I can answer.

Do you have a question? Why not drop me a line? Use the Comments link above, send email to or call the voice mail line at 818-804-5049

Question: WordPress — Is it hype?


I get a lot of questions every day and here is a one from today…

  • Q: Seth Godin uses TypePad. Is WordPress hyped VS a Reg. Website and using Typepad as your blog platform? I like WP but seems like it has to be watched like a hawk for it not to freeze up or slow down. What will this cost me in WP maintenence fees.
  • A: Hmmm, is WordPress hyped? I don’t think so. It does what I need it to do. There is certainly some personal choice and preference involved. I don’t use TypePad myself, but many people seem to, so it must have something going for it.

    I find WordPress easy to maintain and manage and the number of plugins available for it make it quite extensible, even for someone like me who really isn’t a programmer, although technology-savvy. I do like having my own install of WordPress on my own web host, as opposed to having my blog hosted elsewhere — at least for my own personal blogs. I do use extensively for other, shared project blogs, though. I even have one blog still hosted at, where I started.

    Speed is more a function of your web host and the number of plugins/features you have installed on your WordPress site. As with anything, installing too much cruft can slow it down. I find that the amount of traffic you have is more a concern than the actual software though. WordPress has caching plugins available to help in high-load environments., though, so that can help if you have a really popular web site.

    I don’t find I have to “watch it like a hawk” to keep it running. In fact, I don’t think I have ever had a problem with WordPress other than those I have caused myself through badly configured plugins or themes. You should be able to maintain WordPress by yourself, as typically it only involves clicking a few buttons and waiting for the upgrade. In fact, I always recommend that bloggers know how to control and maintain their own blogs, rather than relying on someone else — especially if that person is charging by the hour for basic maintenance.

    The new automated upgrade utilities built into WordPress make it almost a plug and play environment. Most web hosts have a one/two-click install for WordPress, making it even easier.

    Overall, I like WordPress, both self-hosted and hosted at It serves me well and I regularly recommend it to others.

Do you have a question? Why not drop me a line? Use the Comments link above, send email to or call the voice mail line at 818-804-5049

Question: How do I make automatic backups of my WordPress blog database?


I get a lot of questions every day and here is a one from today…

  • Q: How do I easily backup my WordPress database (the file that holds all your posts, comments, etc). Why should you backup your WordPress Database? If not, am I in danger of losing all my blog posts due to hacking, upgrade issues or other technical mistakes?.
  • A: Yes, failing to backup your WordPress database could lead to the loss of all your blog content if there is an issue. There are a variety of ways to backup your WordPress database. The usual method is to use the database manager page at your web host’s site to manually run a backup to a text file and then download the text file. Doesn’t sound very easy or fun, does it. When I switched over to WordPress a few years ago I was determined to find an easier, and more automatic way, to do backups.

    Enter WordPress Database Backup, a free WordPress plugin available from

    On each of your self-hosted WordPress blogs, download and install this plugin and then activate it via the WordPress Dashboard. Once installed, you can force an immediate backup that can be downloaded to your local computer or, and I prefer this method, an automatic backup which wakes up and then emails the backup file. I keep a separate Gmail account just for this purpose.

    Now, whenever there is a WordPress upgrade, I check to make sure there was a recent automatic backup and then proceed with the upgrade, secure in the knowledge that all my content is safe.

Do you have a question? Why not drop me a line? Use the Comments link above, send email to or call the voice mail line at 818-804-5049