Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Flashback Thursday

It’s KOCT Flashback Thursday with a glimpse at memorable pictures from the KOCT archives:
Hosts for KOCT’s video magazine Inside Oceanside. City of Oceanside’s PIO Don Williamson and Amy Forsythe
Amy Forsythe with the Marine Corps at the Syrian Border during the Iraq war. Amy has continued her military media career, now with the Navy, and is currently in Guam. She is an amazing woman.
KOCT’s Station Manager Jacob Rush and Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman. August 2008
August 2001’s Journalist Roundtable (L-R) J. Stryker Meyer, North County Times Reporter,  San Diego Union-Tribune’s Logan Jenkins and then District Attorney Paul Pfingst
Marina Towers construction site circa 1966
KOCT Board of Directors – late 90’s
KOCT supporter and Fun Flights pilot Brian Shepherd & KOCT Board Member Janene Possell Shepherd creating a KOCT ‘Bonzer Tucker’ fundraiser PSA
City Clerk Staff circa 2000
Ron & Sandy Thurlow at Election Headquarters (KOCT's Administrative Assistant now famous Ojai artist)

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Oceanside Programs New and Old

Oceanside programs new and old are the focus of this weeks Blog:  KOCT’s talented production crews have produced another interesting Newsbrief.   KOCT’s multi-talented Peter Bonscher was the Producer, Writer and Editor for a program about the  Oceanside Outrigger Canoe Club. The Videography was done by John Goodman and you can watch this new program on your smart phone, tablet or computer.

SuperGirl Surf Contest –Oceanside IS a surf community and this years SuperGirl Surf Contest had surf and much, much more. KOCT Station Manager, Jake Rush was also the Videographer for the contest and the program was edited by new KOCT employee, John Goodman.  This is an upbeat joyous celebration and easy to share with your family and friends who are not fortunate enough to live in North County.
KOCT’s Video On Demand has some other interesting programs from Yesterday you may not have discovered. The black and white movie “ Oklahoma Cyclone”  staring Bob Steele had many of its scenes shot right here in Oceanside in 1930.  Wickipeda describes the film: Oklahoma Cyclone is a 1930 American Western film directed by John P. McCarthy that is a forerunner of the singing cowboy genre . Note it was a big deal to promote the film as “All Talking”—in contrast to the Pride of Palomar.

Another gem in the KOCT vaults was the silent  movie the Pride of Palomar—many of the scenes were shot in the San Luis Rey Valley and at Rancho Guajome too. Oceanside Historian John Daley gives a brief introduction to the program. Here is a movie synopsis:  

 This virile drama, produced by William Randolph Hearst's Cosmopolitan Pictures, was based on the novel by then-popular author Peter B. Kyne. After serving in Siberia during the Great War, Don Mike Farrell (Forrest Stanley) returns to California to discover that his father has died and the family ranch is now in the hands of John Parker (Alfred Allen). Parker's daughter, Kay (Marjorie Daw), falls in love with Farrell and tries to help him get his rights back. Her attempts, however, are in vain. Parker is working in partnership with Okada, a Japanese land speculator (Warner Oland), who is determined to have the ranch for himself. Farrell has to use all his resourcefulness to defeat the two men. First, he raises the necessary money through chasing down one of his father's debtors, and raises the rest at the racetrack. He then bluffs Parker and wins back his land -- along with Parker's admiration and Kay's hand. ~
Thanks to Kristi Hawthorne and the Oceanside Historical Society for helping KOCT obtain copies of these early movies and for the peek into our Oceanside past that they provide.
Kristi Hawthorne (L) with Board Secretary Kiersten Hill (R)

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Newspaper Junkie Goes Cold Turkey (well almost)

KOCT has been providing local community information since its incorporation in 1984. When I joined the organization there were at least two large newspapers and many weekly papers in north county.  I wrote a weekly column for one of those papers and Bob Bowditch, the founder of KOCT, wrote a cable column for the Blade-Citizen for many years.

I love newspapers and pick up every local print offering that I find on the newsstands or sidewalk racks. Growing up in Santa Fe Springs meant access to at least three daily papers such as the LA Times and the Herald-Examiner. But that was then.

For the first time in my adult life, I have stopped receiving a local newspaper and I miss it. (OK I’m still getting the Sunday paper—I couldn’t go cold turkey)  Our only remaining regional paper has gotten too expensive to subscribe to and the digital reading experience is not the same—navigation is slow and cumbersome, there are too many pop-up ads, and with fewer local reporters, there are only a handful of new local stories per week.

I’m not alone on this journey—the July/August Columbia Journalism Review says that only 23 percent of Americans get their news from print compared with 75 percent who get it from digital (Reuters Survey).
And while it’s true we have more media choices then at any time in history, we probably have less local news than we did only a few short years ago.  Kent Davy, the former Editor for the North County Times, sent me this link to a fascinating though depressing article by Joshua Benton, director of the Nieman Journalism Lab, entitled “As giant platforms rise, local news is getting crushed”.

The article discusses the ongoing loss of newspapers and how “Young people are already tuning out local TV news, just as they did to newspapers earlier…” Many young people state that they get most of their news from Facebook and other social media sites.

KOCT has also been affected by the many changes in media and media habits. Once, viewers would find us because we were on the standard channel tier they would ‘surf’ through and then discover a local program they enjoyed.  Today, however, like most PEG channels across the country, we are only available on the standard definition tier and many if not most viewers surf only in the high-definition tier and don’t realize we are still producing a wealth of valuable highly local programs.

Progress has had one big advantage over the past, however.  Formerly, KOCT was available only in Oceanside on Cox Cable. Today we are also available county-wide on AT&T’s U-Verse and world-wide via the internet on KOCT.ORG
KOCT streams both channels and we endeavor to make all of our programs available as VOD or Video On Demand. That means today’s viewer can watch when they want to and not just when KOCT puts their favorite program on their TV schedule. But we are also competing against thousands of other media choices from “House of Cards” to cute kitties.

KOCT does have one huge advantage over these other choices—we are the only non-commercial independent media outlet whose sole focus is the north county community we all live in and value. We cover and replay local and regional government meetings and provide long-form programs about local transportation, water, development and election issues. Not one commercial channel can say the same thing. That is what gives me hope and why I think we have a place and a future in this rapidly changing digital media universe.  There is only one KOCT- Your Community Channel.