Don’t even say the word “uploading” to me

Don’t even say the word “uploading” to me
April 5, 2013 Micheal Ives
Photo from Randy Keeling on flickr

How Extreme Alaska reporter Micheal Ives felt today.    Photo from Randy Keeling on flickr

By Micheal Ives, Extreme Alaska

Don’t say the word “uploading” to me right now.  Don’t even start to shape up your lips like you are fixing to start “uploa…”  I DON’T WANT TO HEAR IT!  I feel as though today, technology betrayed me.  While the cause of my grief, stress, and sailor-cussing was probably mostly my own fault, it seemed like the digital world had morphed into a frustration demon and was trying to eviscerate me.  Yeah.  It was one of those days.

After enjoying an evening at the Fairbanks Curling Club on Thursday shooting some footage of the bonspiel event, I knew that I had to put in some early work to get it ready and on the Extreme site by afternoon.  I responded like a ninja and walked into UAF at 5:30 AM.  Transferring footage to Final Cut and actually editing my video went fairly quickly.  I had the video ready and walked down to audio record my voice track at about 7 AM.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t remember the door code to the audio booth and I quickly bailed for plan B (the U is a ghastly empty at the crack of dawn).  I got the narrative audio done by recording myself with the videocamera (lens cap on, lapel mic rocking).  Then pretty painlessly added the narration to the video package.  Some quick audio adjustments and I was out.  My wife needed the car by 9 AM, so I peeled out and made it home for her to leave.

Then I uploaded the package to our YouTube account.  Well…I tried.  My entire video package is just about two minutes long.  From my home desktop Macintosh screen I read a box that says, “Uploading.  Estimated time:  740 minutes.”  They were not kidding around either.  I let it sit for an hour and a half while it was uploading.  It made it all the way to 2%.  I was frustrated.  I started to contemplate panicking, but I simply decided to curse some more.  My wife arrived home in time for me to run in UAF and start an upload there before I had to be on the air for “Overtime” on KSUA.  The lab computer begins the upload…and the same box shows and tells me I have a 179 minute wait.  I left the upload going and ran to the studio to make some radio magic.  I return for class (and to hopefully fire up the video to Extreme) only to find some hobgoblin has unplugged my hard drive, because, you know, sometimes you just have to hard drive hobgoblin folks in the journalism department apparently.

More cursing and awkwardness as classmates wonder why I need to be pepper-sprayed and subdued.  I find out that the format of Quicktime movie I am trying to upload is too big.  Ok.  With help from classmates and instructors I am able to get it finally get the video uploaded (as a different type of Quicktime movie….because, you know, having just one that works fine isn’t enough) and then uploaded (see, even you hate this word by now right??) to the YouTube account.  The transaction still took a total of 75 minutes.  Our most efficient system for uploading a 2-minute news video takes 75 minutes of digital uploading to even get to the news site?  Gadzooks!  In a smartphone world where everything happens before lickity-split happens…there just has to be a faster way to transfer video.  And that’s the only thing I will call it now.  Transferring.  That other word just sounds like an egotistical bowel movement.

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