All posts by Morganne Osborne

A Day in the Life at Skills with logos

Video Contest: A Day in the Life at SkillsUSA

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Ask and you shall receive! You’ve requested more hands on activities at SkillsUSA so we are delivering. In our efforts to enhance your experience at SkillsUSA, we have teamed up with SkillsUSA Georgia to host a brand new video contest exclusively for Georgia members attending the 2017 conference.

Develop a team of students to film, edit and produce a video titled, “A Day in the Life at SkillsUSA.” Bring your gear and film on location at the Georgia conference during your free time. The purpose of this theme is to creatively showcase your favorite aspects of SkillsUSA. Feel free to include shots from other competitions as well (you are not limited to the audio/video portion). Please use royalty free music in your production. ESE Networks will announce 1st and 2nd place winners Monday April 3.

Video Length: 1:30-3:00
Submission Deadline: Friday March 31, 2017 @ 5pm EST *late entries will NOT be accepted*
CLICK HERE TO UPLOAD

1st Place Prize Package:

  • 2 Sony PXW-X70 Cameras
  • 2 Sony UWP-71 UHF Wireless Kits
  • 2 Benro Tripods
  • 2 Camera bags
  • 2 64 GB SD cards

2nd Place Prize Package:

  • 1 Sony PXW-X70 Camera
  • 1 Sony UWP-71 UHF Wireless Kit
  • 1 Benro Tripod
  • 1 Camera bag
  • 1 64GB SD card

Troubleshooting Upload Issues

Please do not wait until the last minute to submit your contest video. If you experience any upload issues we ask that you immediately call our tech number 1(866).687.5534. Uploading errors due to procrastination will not be excused.

Contest submissions after 5pm EST on Friday March 31, 2017 will NOT be accepted.You may also reach us via e-mail support@esenetworks.com.
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Live Streaming Graduation Checklist

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It’s our favorite time of the year…graduation season! Follow our checklist below to help make sure your live broadcast goes without a hitch.

To our seniors, congratulations on  your graduation. To our teachers, cheers to summer break!

  • Create the event in the CMS (admin site). Assign a thumbnail. Double check the date and start time. Note: It is common to mix up AM and PM
  • Test streams ahead of time. If you’re able to test from the streaming location that would be ideal. It is much easier to address network issues before the day of your event.
  • Hard-wire in when possible. This will give you the best/most reliable connection. Remember, your grant setup does not have built in WiFi.
  • Check audio. Wearing headphones to hear the quality is key. Make sure headphones are plugged into the green audio jack on the side of the encoder, not the one on the back of the monitor.
  • Promote your event! Promoting your event is just as important as the broadcast itself. A beautiful show doesn’t mean anything without viewers. Invite teachers, parents, friends and the rest of the community to watch your graduation live online.
  • Use inputs 2 & 4. Plug the BNC cable into the SDI out on the camera. Attach the other end of the BNC cable to input 2 or 4 for cameras to appear in Wirecast. If you are a phase 1 school don’t forget your converter box.Demo Video.
  • Pre-make graphics for Wirecast. If you plan to use lower thirds or other name graphics (for guest speakers) do this in advance.
  • Remember to press stream and record. Yes, your live events will auto archive to your ESE site, but we always recommend saving an extra copy to your computer just in case. Clicking Stream and record in Wirecast will save a hard copy simultaneously.
  • Monitor broadcast from a separate computer. Did you know you can watch live events from a mobile device too?
  • Relax and have fun! Our ESE team is here to help. Call 1-866-687-5534 for support.
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Important Updates That Could Affect Your Live Broadcast

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Earlier this month you should have received an e-mail announcing our live broadcast player updates. As of this afternoon, the updates are complete! Along with our transition we also made changes to our security settings.

Please take a moment to share these changes with your I.T. department as this may affect your ability to live stream, upload and playback videos. If you or any of your tech team members have any questions at all please don’t hesitate to call us.

Office Hours: Mon-Fri 8am – 5pm/24 hours a day for LIVE event emergencies.
1-(866)687-5534

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News Team of the Month Facebook Contest

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ESE wants to recognize school News teams that use the ESE platform! Whether you broadcast live or pre-record your Newscast, we encourage all News teams to enter. This contest will be a People’s Choice giving your friends and family the opportunity to vote for you. Entries will be posted to the ESE Facebook page and the submission with the most “likes” wins! You deserve recognition and bragging rights for all of your hard work. Enter today to become ESE’s May News Team of the Month.

What an Entry Includes

An entry includes a picture or short clip of your news team in action and 1-3 sentences about why your News team should win ESE’s NTOTM for the month.

How to enter: Post your entry onto the ESE Networks Facebook page.

When to enter: Entries will be accepted from Monday, May 2 until Friday, May 6 @ 5 PM ET.

How to Win

On May 9th, all of the entries will be re-posted to ESE Networks’ Facebook page. Voting will take place from Monday, May 9th to Friday, May 13th at 5 pm. The entry post with the most “Likes” wins the contest. Share your school’s entry post to increase your chances of winning, and be sure all voters like the ESE Networks Facebook page as well in order for the “Like” to count.

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November Spotlight School

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Each month we select a spotlight school to showcase for the month. Our featured site demonstrates key skills in utilizing their ESE site. In the past all of our spotlights have been from our U.S. Education TV platform. We are excited to announce that for the first time this month’s winner is one of our ESE schools. Pali Production (Palisades Charter High School) in Palisades, California, originally joined a few years ago as a U.S. Education TV school. You may recall them as our “Gold Award” recipient during the 2015 ESE Awards. They recently made the transition to our ESE platform and completely revamped their site in just one month. Yes, this entire site was built in one month by the students at Pali Production! Their hard work and dedication deserves recognition making them our November Spotlight School. We look forward to seeing what this team can do in the future. Thank you for your continued success.

How long have you been a teacher? How long have you taught in video broadcast?

I have been a history teacher for about ten years, but didn’t start teaching a media class until 2008. The change occurred when some very motivated students approached me about developing a Production program. Although hesitant I committed to launching the new program with them. I went unpaid and we had no budget for over five years. There were many opportunities where it would have been easy to quit. My students kept me going and helped me see the long term value to a production program at Palisades Charter High School.

All equipment was purchased by me or donated by generous individuals and local studios.   It was definitely an uphill battle, but people began to see the value of a production program. After a few years our amazing Booster Club started giving us a yearly grant to help us in our mission of providing technical skills to interested students while simultaneously increasing a sense of community.

Have you seen an increase in enrollment in these classes, or attendance rates go up since launching your U.S. Education TV/ESE site?

Having a home for our videos was probably the best thing to happen to our program. It not only served as a way to organize our media but also allow interested students to see what we’re all about. Class sized increased from 14 to 30. For the first time in years we had to turn almost a hundred students away due to a lack of space and technology.

Has your program received any other awards or recognition?

Our program was honored with the following awards these past few years

2013 – Top Ten Finalist from Newtek – awarded w/ Tricaster 40

2014 – US Education “Best Use of Platform for Instructional Purposes”

2015 – US Education “Gold Award”

What distinguishes your program from others?

While most programs seem to focus on studio shows we decided to allow students at the beginning of each year choose their passion. We then organize the class around this while still providing the same services to the community. I think it truly makes us one of the best programs in the country. Although our product may vary slightly every year I am always excited to work with every cohort that comes through Pali Production. When students are invested they work harder and have a more memorable experience. It also makes me work with them to provide the best possible experience each year.

Here are just a few of the things my students produce

–              Live Sports Streaming of several teams on campus

–              Studio Shows that they write, produce and shoot

–              Tedx – each year with a new focus

–              STN Competitions that suit their interests

–              Work for private clients (Videography for weddings, Graphics, PSA’s)

–              Basic web design and graphic design

How has this platform helped you? Does it accomplish anything specific that you require?

This platform allowed us to take our program to the next level. With a way to deliver our content to the community it held us accountable for what we were producing.

On another level it allowed me to attract a new type of student to the class. We were no longer recruiting students interested in video editing. We also wanted students interested in graphic design, web design, advertising and public relations. The latter two have been the largest area of growth since we adopted our website.

What is your favorite aspect of teaching video broadcast? Favorite aspect of the U.S. Education TV/ESE platform?

At very few times can you give students complete responsibility for their work in high school and make it feel like it matters beyond the classroom. This platform allowed us to create several departments within the class. They are responsible for hiring and managing their own employees. When something doesn’t go right they need to problem solve and fix it. I’m more so their advisor than their teacher and I absolutely love seeing them succeed.

Anything else you’d like to add?

I never expected Pali Production (Palisades Charter High School) to be nominated as “School of the Month”. I’m so proud of all the students that have come through the Pali Production program. Each year they faced a set of problems, problem solved and helped improve the program for the group that would succeed them. I think I still think there is plenty of room for improvement, but I don’t doubt we’ll get there because my students are amazing.

 

Click here to watch the School Tour Drone video.

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Buffering slowing you down? Improvements coming soon!

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Recently you may have experienced some technical difficulties with uploading your video content through the web and via FTP. Trust us, this frustrates us just as much as it frustrates you. In the next few months ESE Networks will be transitioning to our very own server group which will allow us to better serve our clients, as well as their viewers, reducing errors and eliminating the current miscommunication between our CMS and the video servers. We are excited about this transition, as we will no longer be reliant on third party servers, and will also have the opportunity to make live streaming updates which will reduce load times and buffering.

While we make this move, it may require a little more patience, allowing extra time when uploading videos. We do also have an alternative upload method available if the traditional web or FTP still doesn’t work for your content after a couple attempts. Give us a call or shoot us an email if you need to give that method a whirl.

Once again, we want to thank you being a vital part of the ESE Networks family, and can’t wait to show you what’s in store with this next set of upgrades!

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Retrieving Files From Your New Camera

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If you’ve had the chance to play with your new Sony camera from the GA grant package you may have noticed that your video files are formatted to save as a .mxf file when recording to the SD card. Please follow the steps below to update the camera settings. This will make life easier when you go to retrieve files from this camera.

Start by clicking the Menu button on the camera –> Scroll down one –> Change ‘Rec Set’ from XAVCHD to AVCHD.

While you’re in the camera settings, if you plan on using the internal mics follow these steps to enable the internal mics.

Menu –> Scroll down to the music note icon –> Change ‘mic select’ from auto to INT MIC.

Remember to always test and monitor your audio.

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10 Things to Know Before Streaming Live

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  1. Check audio. Wearing headphones to hear the quality is key.
  2. Test streams ahead of time. It is much easier to fix network issues before the event actually begins.
  3. Hard-wire in when possible. This will give you the best/most reliable connection.
  4. Create live event in the CMS (Admin site). Double check the date & time. Note: It is very common to accidentally mix up AM and PM.
  5. Inputs 2 & 4.  Plug the BNC cable into the SDI out on the camera. Attach the other end of the BNC cable to input 2 or 4 for cameras to appear in Wirecast. Demo video.
  6. Save videos to the D drive. This is the Project drive which was created specifically for video storage.
  7. Remember to press record. Yes, your live events will auto archive to your ESE site, but we always recommend saving an extra copy to your computer just in case. Clicking Stream and record in Wirecast will save a hard copy simultaneously.
  8. Monitor broadcast from a separate computer.
  9. Run video commercials on the same line as your live camera shots. This will prevent your anchors from being heard in the background during commercial breaks.
  10. Relax and have fun! Our ESE team is here to help. Call 1-866-687-5534 for support.