Blogs in "CMC Ebulletin"

November 2019

Be Ready for Brexit: Brexit Implications for Export and Import Issues

Posted on: Wednesday 06 November 2019 3:38pm by Stuart Dredge

On 24 October, Animation UK and CMC teamed up for the 'Be Ready for Brexit' event in London, to help the animation and kids' content TV and digital production communities learn about and discuss the implications of Brexit on their businesses – whether the UK exits the European Union with or without a deal. At the time of the event, 31 October was still looming as the deadline for the UK's withdrawal agreement to be ratified – and a no-deal crash-out if it were not. Since then, however, the UK's request for an extension to 31 January has been approved by the EU, pushing back that deadline. The third session at the event focused on export and import issues, with a panel…

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Be Ready for Brexit: Brexit and the Future of Finance

Posted on: Wednesday 06 November 2019 3:34pm by Stuart Dredge

On 24 October, Animation UK and CMC teamed up for the 'Be Ready for Brexit' event in London, to help the animation and kids' content TV and digital production communities learn about and discuss the implications of Brexit on their businesses – whether the UK exits the European Union with or without a deal. At the time of the event, 31 October was still looming as the deadline for the UK's withdrawal agreement to be ratified – and a no-deal crash-out if it were not. Since then, however, the UK's request for an extension to 31 January has been approved by the EU, pushing back that deadline. The second session at the event explored the future of finance, with a panel including…

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Be Ready for Brexit: What will Brexit mean for workforce, skills and employment?

Posted on: Tuesday 05 November 2019 10:25pm by Stuart Dredge

On 24 October, Animation UK and CMC teamed up for the 'Be Ready for Brexit' event in London, to help the animation and kids' content TV and digital production communities learn about and discuss the implications of Brexit on their businesses – whether the UK exits the European Union with or without a deal. At the time of the event, 31 October was still looming as the deadline for the UK's withdrawal agreement to be ratified – and a no-deal crash-out if it were not. Since then, however, the UK's request for an extension to 31 January has been approved by the EU, pushing back that deadline. The final session at the event focused on the human side of Brexit…

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July 2019

CMC 2019: Report – The Last Word

Posted on: Friday 05 July 2019 10:52am

With the advertised contributor, Nikki Lilly unable to attend CMC due to illness in her family, CMC moved quickly to put together something inspiring and challenging for the final thirty minutes of the Conference.   Who better than the Changemakers (and friends)?  A group of young people who had never met before, some from this year's Changemaker team, one from last year's (now moderating a session of her own at CMC) and one of the much-appreciated CMC volunteer team who had been in the Changemaker support crew. and got to know them through the course of the conference. The panel closed the event by discussing their opinions of the conference and industry, and what they hope for the future of media…

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CMC 2019: Report – Online Killed the TV Star

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 10:34pm by Cate Zerega

5 BILLION YouTube videos are watched EVERY DAY. With 430, 000 hours of content being uploaded to the platform every day, it’s no surprise that we all fear the demise of TV as we know it. Takeaway:                            Recognize the snobbery that dismisses the online star. Creating a crossover success is best served with a holistic, talent first approach - can’t plug just any talent into any show and expect audience success. Detail: Presenter Leah Charles King started the session playing three clips and asked the panel and audience which clip had the most views. A clip of Kylie Jenner’s daughter won with over twenty-seven million. Influencer Lewys…

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CMC 2019: Report – Unconscious Bias

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 3:12pm by Cate Zerega

Increase your awareness of your bias... One way to do so is to take an implicit association test. Practise good self-care so that you can free up brain space to better challenge your implicit bias. We can help change a child’s brain structure by what we show them. Takeaway: Only 1% of children's books feature a BAME character. Despite being in starring roles, animated female Disney characters  have less dialogue than males. Why do we like cats over rats when both are furry animals with pointy ears? Detail: The HUBS Hideout filled with delegates for Luise Usiskin's talk on unconscious bias. Luise started with how humans learn to categorise. She shared the story of when her daughter was small and…

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CMC 2019: Report – China: Business & Partnerships

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 12:45pm by Tim Collins

Doing business in China is entering a golden period – there appear to be more opportunities than ever before.   So what should we be looking for and how do we approach China? Takeaway: China is a huge market, with over 360m children, including 180m pre-schoolers. There is a projected animation spend of $34bn by 2021 China is investing in and creating IP and is actively looking for foreign partners. The Department for International Trade, BFI and others can help with regulations, censorship, quotas on foreign content and IP protection. Detail: The session started with a comprehensive scene setter from our host Louise from the DIT.   The UK Government is working very hard at our relationship with China and the recent…

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CMC 2019: Report – Fortnite-ly Phenomena: What creates a digital craze?

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 12:31pm by Tim Collins

Digital crazes aren’t a new phenomenon. Think Moshi Monsters, Club Penguin, Angry Birds... But they’re happening quicker than ever. New devices and social media are key drivers in accelerating these trends. Takeaway: Smartphone ownership has been increasing 33% YoY for 4-9 years olds since 2017. Access to new technology by younger kids is accelerating how digital content and experiences can lead to crazes. The gaming revolution has been driven by increasing device capability, more devices, more games available for free and the introduction of social and chat. Illustration by Greg McLeod Detail: The session started with moderator Neil Court asking the panel if there was any special sauce in being able to spot or even help create a digital craze.…

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CMC 2019: Report – Delivery Demands

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 11:39am by Vanisha Sumboo

Technical standards and delivery demands have undergone vast changes in recent years. Content is commissioned by the platform giants and viewed by the consumer in very different ways than how it used to be. Nowadays, the process has much shorter timelines, higher production costs, and more delivery formats - meaning the final quality can be at risk. This session took a look at how to effectively tackle these new delivery demands. Takeaway: ● Netflix have their own QC (quality control) requirements – knowing them from the outset will help streamline the process. ● Have an IT specialist to help with the demands of security procedures. ● Test your pipeline and delivery processes as early as you can, use automatic routines…

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CMC 2019: Report – The Incredible Playable Lunchtime Show

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 11:20am

With a chance to become human buttons, take on the Power Rangers, zap each other with barcode scanners and play Pac-Man using inflatable toys, The Incredible Playable Lunchtime Show was a hilarious CMC innovation putting the audience at the centre and gives them the chance to unleash their inner kid. Takeaway: Everything was interactive from the start. It's a chance to unleash the inner kid. Detail: Dressed out on the stage with inflatables, coloured barcode jackets, everything appeared to be very interactive from the start. Game Developer, Alistair Aitchrson, hosted the event looking like ‘The Greatest Showman’. His work is known for its emphasis on physical activity and social interaction, and his games have won awards at the IndieCade and GameCity…

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CMC 2019: Report – Creative Keynote: Horrible Histories The Movie

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 11:07am by Helen Dugdale

Changemaker singer/songwriter Sapphire introduced tonight’s keynote session with a breathtaking rendition of 'Shallow (A Star is Born)' before an impassioned plea to the audience concerning the struggles teenagers are facing when it comes to mental health issues. Her rally for change in content moderation focused in on social platform Instagram - a platform where, she argued, young people can readily access inappropriate content in contrast to the existing standards in the film and television industries. Takeaway: Quintessential British humour - in the great tradition of sketch comedy. The books aren’t about history - they’re about people. People make the comedy. Write for adults and children (just leave out the swearing). Detail: The keynote was an entertaining dive into the hilarious…

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CMC 2019: Report – The CMC Debate: Limitless Content Good or Bad?

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 10:07am

The session was opened with an introduction of a showreel by changemaker Toby Lloyd, DOP from Truetube, a platform that tells stories about the struggles of young people. He explained that as a child, he was not allowed to explore a lot of things he was interested in, due to lack of accessibility. Even today, smartphone ownership is still not universal among young people. While young people of this generation are so much more aware of the human experience than previous ones, society still has the responsibility to protect them from dangerous content.   Session: The motion of the debate was whether limitless content is good for children’s media. In a world with increasing amounts of content and numbers of…

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CMC 2019: Report – First Timers Lunch

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 9:13am by Cate Zerega

The Hubs Hideout hosted Ester Kaufmann and her 'conference buddies' - CMC experts who have been attending since at least 2013 - for a relaxed lunch packed with tips and tricks to help new attendees navigate the conference hustle with confidence and aplomb. Takeaway:     Newbie homework from Esther Kaufmann - catch one research session, they are always interesting and in her opinion underattended. Brolly Brollyman - Read your fellow delegates' body language and pounce when the body language is laid back and not before. Chella Quint has found Karaoke to be a great boundary leveller. Detail: Jonny Ford recalled sweating at his first conference whilst thinking, “I know there are people I need to talk to but I have no…

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CMC 2019: Report – Focus on Ireland

Posted on: Thursday 04 July 2019 8:51am by Simon Bor

Ireland has become the go-to place for the creation and production of some truly outstanding content for audiences of all ages. The panel, put together by the Irish industry, revealed what Ireland can offer. Takeaway: A supportive broadcaster and tax breaks have created a world class Irish animation industry. Pablo is a pre-school series that aims to raise awareness of the autistic spectrum. The quality bar, for animation, was raised a long time ago.   Detail: Andrew Kavanagh, from Kavaleer Productions, introduced the panel of content-makers from the island of Ireland by asking them to divulge a secret. Lean Byrne, head of Jam Media’s scripting department told us that she left home at twenty-two but her mother continued to buy the…

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CMC 2019: Report – Resetting the moral compass

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 11:47pm by Jenny Kane

In April 2019, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport published the White Paper on “online harms”. This session questioned whether we are finally resetting the dials on the internet to make it truly friendly for children and families. Considering high-profile cases, such as the tragic death of Molly Russell, the White Paper demonstrates the a governmental responsibility to safeguard the activity of children within their 'digital playground'. However, as the panel clearly expressed, the protection of children online cannot rely solely on government policy. Content producers, brands, parents, schools and the platforms themselves all have a part to play.   Takeaway: 400 hours of content are uploaded to YouTube every minute. "Children won’t 'jump-ship' on their favourite platforms and…

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CMC 2019: Report – Clicks and Mortar: The New Retail Space

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 11:30pm by Michelle Jones

This panel discussed the way in which merchandising, the retail space and the licensing industry is adapting to the digital disruption it's facing.  With a seismic shift in the retail environment as 60% of purchases are now online - which has grown from 20% in 2017 - how are brand owners today creating new consumer product stories by developing their own direct-to-consumer platforms for the paying audience? Takeaway: We need to look at consumers (millennial parents) and where they want to shop. The more IP owners can demonstrate their products are wanted by consumers -  the better placed they are to get into traditional retail landscapes. Licensing spikes are coming from non-traditional TV content now (such as gaming - e.g.…

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CMC 2019: Report – Pushing the Preschool Envelope

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 10:51pm by Sam Barlow

With a panel of industry figures from across the kids' media business, this session discussed the challenges of finding and moreover holding a preschool audience, in the midst of an ever more fragmented landscape. Takeaway: Diversity is the key to building a global brand. Be genuine - don't be 'tokenistic'. Let the audience take the lead and don't be afraid to be where they are. Detail: With a universal audience, there is a need to tell relatable, authentic and skilfully told stories in order to teach children about emotional intelligence, human values, knowledge of the world, cognition and sense of identity. Jodie Morris opened with the topic of inclusivity and diversity and explained that in 'Bing', nothing is prescriptive which…

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CMC 2019: Report – Kids Taking a Stand

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 9:29pm

Young people are constantly given the reminder, especially by media, that their future is bleak. The narrative is one of low pay, dying democracies, a world on fire, and corporations bent on stealing their data. But this needs to be changed to one of hope and possibility even amongst those challenges. This was what the CMC theme – Limitless (suggested by a young person) – meant to the panel, the potential and possibility of youth. Takeaway: Young people are energised, hopeful and poised to take action, and hungry for content on activism – but they need the tools and resources to do it. Media must accept their responsibility as an educator of the young. We have to help ready a…

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CMC 2019: Report – The YACF – A User’s Guide

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 9:25pm by Shannon Reeve

Changemaker Euella Jackson opened the session with a discussion of her journey, and an important question: what can you be doing to inspire change? Session: The Young Audiences Content Fund is a pilot which launched in April 2019. Content makers and producers have the opportunity to access funds to support the creation of distinctive and high-quality content for children. The pilot for the fund is due to last three years and has £57 million available to support development and production. Takeaway: Apply sooner rather than later! - Funding will be split between the three years, offering around £18m per year Read more about the fund on the BFI website: https://www.bfi.org.uk/supporting-uk-film/production-development-funding/young-audiences-content-fund Detail: Jackie Edwards discussed what the fund is, describing it…

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CMC 2019: Report – Writers Assemble!

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 5:16pm by Emma Boucher

What happens when a group of writers get together in one room? They share their top tips for getting that sought-after first credit in kids' TV, developing as a writer and staying relevant in the industry, of course! Takeaway: Do your homework – watch shows, be familiar with broadcasters and production companies. Network – build and maintain relationships with your contacts through emails, social media and events. And last but not least write, write, write – producers and agents want to read exciting original scripts.  Detail: Hosted by Dominic MacDonald, the packed session kicked off with plenty of top tips on how to enter the industry as a new writer. The panel advocated the importance of learning the business, watching…

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CMC 2019: Report – Pushing the Boundaries for Learning

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 4:22pm

The session explored a simple but important question; how do we deliver the best, most innovative learning content for children? In a world where children are increasingly media and digital savvy, how can new technologies be used to create learning experiences to compete for children’s attention.  Can the newer skills like gamification and transmedia storytelling make an impact across the education space and help children develop the skills and knowledge the next generation will need to navigate an increasingly complex and challenging world? Takeaway: Characters and narrative deepen the learning experience. Pedagogy knowledge can make sure learning accompanies engagement. Simple AI is already delivering real benefits in learning and is an exciting area of development. New technologies and approaches are…

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CMC 2019: Report – Limiting the Limitless?

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 3:14pm by Helen Dugdale

This Question Time style session saw an industry panel face pre-planned questions from the audience about several challenging areas, including the new Young Audiences Content Fund, how they really feel around SVODS and how to tackle the safety of kids online. Illustration: Greg McLeod. Takeaway: The industry welcomes the Young Audience Content Fund. There is enough space for both PSBs and SVODs. The government needs to get involved in the battle for online safety. Detail: The session host Stewart Purvis welcomed everyone to the session and talked briefly about the sponsor, The Children’s Media Foundation, and their important work. Question 1:  Is Ofcom happy with responses from the commercial PSBs to last year’s report? Clarifying Ofcom’s position, Kevin Bakhurst said:…

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CMC 2019: Report – Research 3 & 4

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 3:00pm by Gabrielle Smith

Two back-to-back presentations providing thought-provoking research considering today’s media landscape, both on and offline. Research 3 looked at attitudes regarding who makes the rules on age ratings as a point of contention and debate. Combining independent research and the BBFC Public Consultation, the panel delved into some of the concerns of how aspects of sexual violence and threat are portrayed on screen. Research 4 focused on the unique streaming service HEIHEI, and the way in which New Zealand has introduced innovative ways of supporting home grown media and local kids’ content. Takeaways: "You don’t need to see sexual violence to feel its impact" – teens already good at talking about this with their peers. Are children becoming interestingly cautious about…

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CMC 2019: Report – The Art of Play

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 1:09pm by Jess Percival

The Art of Play was a dive into how playing is an amazing way to connect not only with children, but also adults. The session was filled with creation, and lots of noise. Takeaway: Grab fun with both hands Don’t limit children, they can create big things Play for play’s sake - it doesn’t have to be educational. You might have to help children reach a breakthrough, but the results will be wonderful. Detail:  The session was split into two halves, to demonstrate different types of play. The first half focused on play which involved toys and objects, things that you can get your hands on. The second was more focused on imagination, playfulness and sound. The first half was…

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CMC 2019: Report – The CMC Drinks Reception

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 10:28am by Simon Bor

Sheffield Cathedral was humming with chatter and live music as a record number of CMC delegates arrived for the annual drinks reception. Surrounded by displays of classic and current characters such as Mr Benn, it was a chance to catch up with old friends, meet new contacts and sample delicious canapes. Takeaway: "If I can leave this conference inspiring people to tell stories in a new way then I’ll be happy." Detail: The atmosphere was captured by the blogging team as a whole who asked delegates how the first day of the conference had gone for them.  "Factory's opening drinks were so much fun," said one. "This is a great conference." One who was at the CMC SkillBuilder said, "I'm making…

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CMC 2019: Report – First Timers Reception

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 10:12am

The First Timers’ Reception kicked off with an impromptu walking tour of Sheffield, as delegates chatted their way through the town to the impressive location of the City Hall. Once the ‘newbies’ had gathered (and found the reception!) presenter Chris Jarvis began, making sure to include useful tips that were both reassuring and engaging for all.  Takeaway: Do download the CMC app to plan your sessions effectively. Don’t forget to use the #tcmc whenever you share anything on your social channels. Do attend the opening and closing sessions. Don’t forget to take notes, you’ll never remember everything! Do turn up early to sessions, they can get very busy. Don’t keep to the same few people for all three days, broaden your social…

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CMC 2019: Report – CMC International Exchange 2019

Posted on: Wednesday 03 July 2019 9:06am

This year’s International Exchange market day at CMC seemed bigger than ever with delegates from all corners of the world from the UK to China. They were welcomed to the exquisite Victorian  Town Hall in Sheffield’s city centre to pitch their ideas to television executives, book publishers, distributors and more. Takeaway: 60 potential buyers from a wide range of companies and services across the children’s media industry. A swift and friendly process where fifteen minutes can make the difference. From television pilots to picture books to animated content to games, people participated in a competitive market with a friendly atmosphere. Detail: Participants had two half-day sessions of the Exchange to pitch and sell their ideas to the buyers, some of…

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CMC 2019: Report – CMC Skillbuilder Bible & Pitch

Posted on: Tuesday 02 July 2019 11:45pm by Helen Dugdale

With a team of industry gurus to guide our delegates through the tricky but essential world of crafting the perfect pitch, there was talk of whether bibles were even still ‘a thing’. In this round-table format, delegates could discuss their ideas and get honest and workable feedback from those that know best. Takeaway: Keep your pitch brief and do your research. Believe in your project. Aim for the follow up/next. A bible isn’t essential - it’s all about the idea. Detail: With a strong team of sixteen children’s media gurus ready and waiting to share their top tips - advice on what needs to be in an outstanding pitch, as well as the ideas to include in a bible were…

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CMC 2019: Report – Opening Keynote: Nadiya Hussain

Posted on: Tuesday 02 July 2019 10:40pm by Cate Zerega

Tonight at Sheffield City Hall, CMC Advisory Chair, Sue Nott, welcomed the huge gathering of CMC delegates and asked us all to reflect upon what it means to be ‘limitless’- the theme for CMC 2019. With an outstanding address made by Changemaker Noga Levy-Rapoport, the 17-year-old student challenged the audience to eschew a diplomatic approach in addressing climate change in children’s media. Her call to action asked that we all create much needed and vital content, across all platforms- from YouTube, to ‘Insta’-stories as well as in publishing and conventional TV programming. She notes that there is a ‘global call for children to become the leaders of today’, so why not start with their media? The Keynote Takeaway: Create the…

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CMC 2019: Report – Playground 

Posted on: Tuesday 02 July 2019 4:49pm by Jess Percival

From the 25th June until the 7th July 2019, the Site Gallery becomes Playground - a free interactive exhibition for those aged 5-12 years (but everyone is welcome to join in!). This year’s theme is Game/Changers showcasing several iconic toys and games reimagined in exciting forms that encourage participation, teamwork and having a lot of fun! Takeaway: The core focus of Playground is to combine physical and digital play. Everything is suitable for a variety of ages, and can help bring young and old together. Each exhibit combines recognisable elements with new and exciting interactions. Detail: Will Hurt’s Abstract Playground: AP1 is an interactive, engaging, abstract audiovisual scene using geometry of physical sites to re-present local architecture and landscape. The interesting style…

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