Slate-How’s My Multi-Media? #5

In my previous post I talked about the fact that I think Slate does a fair job of presenting multimedia content. In that example I referenced audio. I’ve also said how much I love the photography and that opinion hasn’t changed. I still adore the photo galleries as much as ever. But I had also praised some of the video on the Slate.

So imagine my surprise when I found some pretty terrible video. In “Jennifer Egan:The Lure of the Shadow Self” I expected to see a slick expertly produced video. Let me know what you think, but my version jumped all over the place. It looked like it was shot on a cellphone. My question is why? This is a professional publication that presumably has a budget, so why the crummy hand held video? I also don’t like Slate’s idea of posting the ads that sponsor its video segments at the beginning of the segment and again at the end. Isn’t one or the other sufficient? Apparently not. I think I want my web video to look better. Jerky 1081i video is still jerky 1080i video.

I thought I would next jump to something like “ Dear Prudence ,” which I have also written about before on this site. The column routinely utilizes animation alongside actual people and I was hoping it would be far more watchable. And viola! It actually was. The interspersed live action and animation in a short-format works quite well. This left me more confused than ever over why the other video was so bad? Beats me.

Other features Slate has include pod-casts, which are fine, and of course the ” Doonesbury” cartoons which I also like. So the verdict?…Like so much else produced on this site it’s mixed, leaving the reader confused about why one video looks great and another terrible. It continues to be the lack of consistency that is the most maddening thing about this publication.


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