Ellen King

Week 1

This week we decided on what our pop up station would be based around, with the overall class decision being a gaming station. The stations that we chose between were very varied, with me choosing to pitch for the ‘Women’s Rights’ station, but it was deemed not women focused enough, which I can see now.

Although initially I was concerned about a gaming station as I know absolutely nothing about it, we had a class discussion about everything that can be involved in it such as discussion topics, the different music that gaming covers and the different types of shows that we can create. Knowing about this and seeing everyone elses’ enthusiasm for the station makes me feel better about doing something I don’t know and I feel that it will be a good and fun challenge for us to end on.

The structure of the station has also been decided, consisting of three one hour long shows. The first one being a music show, including all genres that the games cover and the different stations within the games. As the genres are so diverse and broad, a show solely dedicated to the music was absolutely necessary. The second show is a speech/discussion show, which will cover more taboo topics in gaming culture, such as women in gaming and violence, which will cover the half an hour requirement of speech content for the module. Finally, we are having a magazine style show called the Retro Show about games that we used to love and the different elements of the future of gaming. All of which I feel will be good shows for the station.

We also decided on a competition, which we are hoping to be for listeners to win tickets to a gaming convention in Birmingham called Insomnia, which is happening the weekend of our final show, so it can run for the four weeks of the station.

The roles that we will all have are also now finalised, with the big roles being pitched for my the people who wanted to do them such as Station manager. Originally, I planned to do something with social media as that’s what I have the most experience with as I am a Social Media intern at a radio station and have been for the past 6 months. I also applied to be the assistant producer for the music show, as knowing that it contains a lot of different genres would be really interesting for me and would expend my knowledge of something I already love. When it came down to it, I ended up with being Assistant Producer for the Music show as it was expressed that the use of  classical music would be included, and as I am a classical musician, I felt that my knowledge on the subject would be really helpful for the show. However, as there aren’t enough people to be assistant producers for the other shows, I am now the assistant producers for all the show, which I am alright with, as long as all the producers know that I can’t be three places at once. So my teams are: Music Show – Callum and Mark; Speech Show – Phoebe, Fay and Tony; Retro Show – Abbi and Natalie.


Week 2

This week we have started planning the shows and finalised our stations name which is “Unlocked”. We made the decision to not have radio in the name as radio is now a digital platform as well so it needs to be included as a brand rather than just radio. However, what did happen was that there was a change around in roles which I’m not too happy  about as it involved me basically not being on the Music show which is what I wanted to be on and now being assistant producer for just the speech show, which I originally said I would do out of kindness as there was no one else to help. Unfortunately, it appeared that I didn’t have a say in it so I  don’t really have much of a choice so I’m just having to do it, even though I have no knowledge on it. I know it will be interesting, but it’s just frustrating as it isn’t what I had planned to do.

Speech Show: This week the producer, Phoebe, and I sat down and had a group meeting with everyone and we decide on a name which is now called ‘State of Play’, which we feel works really well with the idea of the show as it’s making you think in different states of mind about gaming as a whole. We also looked over a basic idea for what the shows would cover over each week. We went back and forth with these quite a lot and deciding the order of them was tricky as we didn’t want it to not flow well from one show to the next. We knew from the beginning that a show on Virtual Reality would be last as it would be fun and light-hearted. Also we decided this as for the OB we would like to go to the first VR escape room in London and have the OB team take part in that, as it would run over the course of the show, which would be such good interaction for the listener and would make for really good pieces of visualisation, social media, and website content. Finally, we decided on Gaming Culture for Week 1 and the Pilot show, Women in Gaming for Week 2, Gaming Addiction and In-App Purchases for Week 3, and a VR Special for Week 4. I also made a basic clock for the shows to follow which can be found on the Google Drive in the State of Play folder, although we are aware that this will probably slightly alter week by week, but will definitely be completely different for the final week. Another thought that I had was to add a helpline page to the website that the show can refer the listeners to, as some of our topics will cover some sensitive issues, such as addiction, gambling, online bullying and harassment, and we do not want the audience to suffer in silence so the links can be there just as a stand by as we do not want to promote anything negative, just highlight the issues.

Music Show: Although my main role is now AP for the speech show, I am still playing a small part in the music show. Another change that has happened, is that Ellie is now the Producer of the show and no longer Mark, so first thing we did was inform Ellie of Callum, Mark and my previous ideas that we had. We confirmed the name ‘Press Play’ which fits in with the rest of the station, and decided that we wanted the show to have a more commercial sound, such as Capital or Kiss. We also decided on 2 features, the first being Rage Quit, where every week we play out either YouTube clips or listeners clips of them rage quitting a game, which is a bit of light-hearted fun. This would be played out over the Wii theme music, to contradict the audio being played out and also because it is now more of a meme as well, so the audience would understand why it would be funny. The second feature is Grand Theft Audio, which would happen at the end of the show, but we would create a Twitter poll with 3/4 songs from one of the radio stations in the game and get the listeners to vote which one they’d want to hear at the end of the show, so making for good social media interaction, and then we would also play the hooks for the tracks that didn’t get the majority votes. Also, I drew a rough clock which Ellie then made more professional and you can find that in the Google Drive under Press Play as well.


Week 3

This week it seems that I have been entirely removed from Press Play (the music show) as there isn’t enough for me to do, so now it appears that I am solely doing the speech show. This week I sat down again with Phoebe and started planning the pilot show, as next week we would like to have a run through of the first half an hour to test if we can have smooth links and to get to grips with the outside broadcast equipment. We decided that where it was deemed appropriate we would add a package to add extra content. So for example, in the first week we will be making a package on Fay’s brother, whose parents have put him on a ‘playstation detox’ for his use of constant bad language and we will be speaking to him, his parents and his girlfriend to see how they all feel about it. But this would not be appropriate for all the topics as some of them do need to be fairly heavy. What we do have as well is the news team who are doing an investigative journalism piece on each show about the topic, which is called ‘Update’.

Phoebe and myself sat down this week and brainstormed ideas for all the shows in order to decide what topics we would need to cover. This was really useful as it meant we could talk to the OB team and the news team to see what they wanted to cover and how they would angle it, so that it would fit in nicely with the shows and so that we weren’t just doubling up on content.

I also started doing some research for a package for week 2 on incels, which are male gamers who hate female gamers and trying to find reasons why. I stumbled across a study which was really helpful that showed reasons why men don’t like playing women in games as it is mainly to do with the fact that they tend to see female characters as more of a romantic or sexual opportunity than an opponent.

I also devised the first running order for the pilot show/week 1, which has been sectioned into 3-10 minute slots detailing what the presenters will be speaking about in each section, with extra research to be added, although I am keen for the presenters to do research on the topics themselves as I’m worried that if they are just reading off the running order, it will sound too scripted and not passionate enough. I am also starting to make different clocks for each week depending on what is happening in the show.

When it comes to research, Phoebe and I decided that we will try to make more content point than needed as we’d much rather have too much and have to cut some than not enough and have to resort to using music instead. Although using music wouldn’t be a negative point, as the topics can be quite sensitive, the music would have to be carefully picked out before hand as to fit in with the themes of the show, which is something that will need to be sorted within the next week or so.


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