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Television program idea?

Redshft

Contributor
Nov 5, 2007
554
22
49
Greenville, NC
How would one pursue an idea for television programming? I had a brief brainstorm tonight while watching TV and came up with an idea for a TV show as well as a few channels that would be good candidates for running this program.

Would I simply try to contact the individual channels with a brief description of my idea in hopes of an opportunity to give a more detailed presentation? How can you protect an idea like that?

Would someone actually have to produce a program and try to sell it to the channels?
 

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DeBorahBeatty

New Contributor
Jan 14, 2008
12
3
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Pacific Northwest
I would say to first identify your target market. Would this idea be an infomercial type property or a weekly show? Are you selling a product? If not, contact your local cable company. For them to broadcast, the FCC requires that they provide a certain amount of "community access" programming which means you can do a television show for free using their studio and cameras, etc. We did that in San Jose, CA for a little over a year with AT&T with a program called The Open Door.

Depending on your locale, some companies allow advertising, some don't. For the Open Door, we could credit and mention contributing companies, here in Walla Walla, we cannot even mention our own website.

The experience taught me a lot about the industry since I got training as camera, computer generated graphics (aka credits), floor director, working the sound board with the production engineer and all sorts of connection hints as well.

Might be worth a shot to at the very least, test market?????

DeBorah Beatty
www.deborahbeatty.com
 
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Redshft

Contributor
Nov 5, 2007
554
22
49
Greenville, NC
Thanks for the reply DeBorah. There is a target market identified. Nothing is being sold. It is a skit/informative program mainly for men that would be great for Spike, G4, USA, etc.
 

DeBorahBeatty

New Contributor
Jan 14, 2008
12
3
0
Pacific Northwest
Great. This could definitely be a project you could produce on your local Community Access Station for free to see if it plays. Call it test marketing. That way you'll also have some "in the can" to show the big kids like Spike, etc.

The other alternative is to go to the network/station websites and see if there is any contact information there. Then contact them and ask how they accept their material. May not be viable until after the writer strike as many networks are honoring the solidarity.
 
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Redshft

Contributor
Nov 5, 2007
554
22
49
Greenville, NC
May not be viable until after the writer strike as many networks are honoring the solidarity.
This is true! I'm afraid I need more resources than just a camera and a stage. Actually I know I do, this is where I'm troubled. It is actually kind of a Myth Busters type show.
 

MJ DeMarco

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Great. This could definitely be a project you could produce on your local Community Access Station for free to see if it plays. Call it test marketing. That way you'll also have some "in the can" to show the big kids like Spike, etc.
I was going to suggest this as well ... thx Deb .. time to exit parking. Speed+
 

DeBorahBeatty

New Contributor
Jan 14, 2008
12
3
0
Pacific Northwest
Well, you might just be surprised who you know with a digital video camera - What we did with The Open Door was to buddy up with field pieces, one camera, a good microphone and good editing software (Roxio makes one of the best). Got the piece where we liked it and got the engineers in the studio to help up edit it into our live program. Since it was live to tape, it worked out well. When you work with your local community access folks, you get access to a heck of a lot more than just a "camera and a stage". We had 3 state of the art cameras we all had to be trained to use, sound equipment that made you cry it was so cool, all kinds of mixing tools, a Computer Graphics (CG) system so we could do titles and such and most importantly, a staff of technicians who made sure we had a quality product. I would suggest at least talk to them before blowing off the idea.

YOU GOTTA START SOMEWHERE! Why not make it a game and play? At the very least, you'll be able to intelligently formulate a needs list once you have put something together already, right?

Best of luck.
 

Z5 FILMS

Contributor
Aug 13, 2007
462
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48
The Woodlands, TX
Don't forget the internet as an option.

I think independent "internet TV shows" will be big in the future.

Similar to http://www.nextinternetmillionaire.com/

I think they did a pretty good job producing it. They had no previous experience. If you have an idea for a TV show, put a team together and shoot it. You don't need anyones approval. All you need is a plan.
 

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