Friday 30 November 2012

Channel 4 News, LSE and the Leveson Google+ Hangout On Air

Google+ Post showing user and a mini player
Channel 4 held their first Hangout On Air today. This post is providing all the speaker information and links to negotiate through the broadcast.

To develop HOAs (Hangouts On Air) further, it necessary to understand the timeline of posting and sharing. Gone are the days when you turn on the TV at 6pm and simply watch. HOAs can open in seconds, when news breaks so we need no studio, no production staff or specialist equipment.

Sunday 25 November 2012

Insights on creating a simple collage using Picasa 3.9.0

As a Teacher Broadcaster, I use slides and collages every single day. Here's how I do it, you can too ..

Insights on creating a simple collage using Picasa 3.9.0 (all for free) and to share at Google+

Effects used are just: Crop, Highlight, Shadow, Straighten, Orton and Collage adding text in Arial and Angelina font. Save and Export to Online Web Album or Google Drive.

Monday 19 November 2012

Hangouts On Air are nearly Impossible to Find - How can we Harvest those High Quality Broadcasts?

All paths lead to a Hangout On Air
This post is a work in progress as it can't be another way. When I've explained what I know and how I got there, I expect a few readers to pave the way with some ideas.


To get started, let's look at: where we can normally see six HOAs (Hangouts On Air). I'm leaving the the long links in, as you can see what I'm talking about. I see this as a learning point.

Hangouts On Air have Help Pages Use Them

Don't wait to get stuck, do your homework, spend 10 mins reading, take a mental snapshot and know the answers .. not so much for yourself, but Help Others ..

For a 4000x2000 copy of the slide visit Drive:

To get started, visit: .. HOAs look easy, they're not,With great power comes responsibility .. My favourite quote is still, Enjoy!! ...and don't forget you're broadcasting publicly, so mind your manners ;) (+Katherine Gramann May, 2012) ..

There are also Hangout Help Pages How many have you read? 

And don't leave it too late to find the one you need .. .. Coming next the same slide for Hangouts On Air .. can't wait visit: .. 

The Video ..

Friday 16 November 2012

Cathiana, Ghetto Film School and making dreams a reality

I've been waiting for this upload for weeks. Such an inspiration with +Cathiana Jean Julien ,  +Gloria S. Álvarez +Stosh MintekLee Daniels (director of Precious) ..+Ghetto Film School ..

Founded in 2000, Ghetto Film School is a non-profit that teaches the art of cinematic storytelling to young filmmakers from the South Bronx and beyond. Using Google+ Hangouts, Ghetto Film School MasterClass connects great directors with aspiring filmmakers from around the world. To learn more about Ghetto Film School's programs and support young filmmakers, visit

Gloria S. Álvarez13 Nov 2012
Hi Mike! Thanks so much for all your support, it's a big day for us! In the video you meet the lovely miss +Cathiana Jean Julien. Give her as many shout-outs as you see fit, she deserves them! :)

Mike Downes13 Nov 2012Edit

+Gloria S. Álvarez Thanks, it sends chills down my spine and more emotion than I can handle when anyone takes an idea and creates something from nothing. I used to teach young children to write. Starting with a blank page was the hardest part. +Cathiana Jean Julien and everyone at +Ghetto Film School inspires beyond belief .. :) 

Has anyone seen +Robbie Williams in a Hangout today .. not us

But, we had a great time Waiting for Robbie as part of the #crashmyhangout event. This was a fun event, we sustained 25-35 viewers for 97 minutes, which is a record (for us) ..

Whatever happened today Robbie, we're sure it wasn't down to you. And knowing you how you put your fans first, we're sure this event will be rearranged soon and we'll get to hangout with you ..

My Alert read .. Your next Khan Academy-Related Talks and Interviews video is ready!

And it's invaluable (I added that), what an insight into the+salman khan world ..

With the backing of Gates and Google, Khan Academy and its free online educational videos are moving into the classroom and across the world. Their goal: to revolutionize how we teach and learn. Sanjay Gupta reports.

Professional Audio for Hangouts On Air brought to you by +Scott Mills of the +Toronto Police Service

15 Comments at Google+
Here we have a recent event ( with a Mac Book Pro connected to a USB Webcam (mounted on a stand), Sennheiser Audio Receiver plugged into the mic socket and a USB 3g stick for web connection. Mounted on the speaker's lectern is a Sennheiser Audio Transmitter.

The slide also shows a media TV Truck, a bunch of cameras on tripods and a shot of the Event Page. Remember, the Hangout On Air kit easily slips into a rucksack and runs on batteries. Welcome to the future of Broadcasting.  

This video is invaluable for Hangouts On Air

Everyone should watch it and learn .. Ghetto Film School's +Stosh Mintek (and +Gloria S. Álvarez)  demonstrates how easy it is to set up and host a class using Google+ Hangouts. To learn more about Ghetto Film School's programs and support young filmmakers, visit

How I've Arranged My Circles at Google+ by Mike Downes

Circles A, B and C I check all the time. New Folks are added until I find a place for them.

Circles 1 to 5 I check occasionally, while Bookmark is empty, where 6 to 9 are for storage. That's it, no clever stuff .. Have a Question, just ask ..  

First Posted at Google+ 13 Nov 12

I'm still getting people email me.. perhaps they should see this (again)

Hangout with Gmail contacts right from your inbox and see what happens when the email chain goes Google. Learn more at

The British Ambassador to Lebanon Tom Fletcher held a Hangout On Air

Ambassador Tom Fletcher
Last month, I was delighted to produce this broadcast. The Hangout Interview with +Tom Fletcher British Ambassador to Lebanon is ready to watch again. Joint hosts were +Lara Setrakian +Henry Langston 

The connection from Beirut was just a megabyte showing how versatile Hangouts are for getting a valuable message out at the highest level.  

+Tom Fletcher is known as The Digital Diplomat. This is a fascinating part of the session as +Lara Setrakian asks the Ambassador about his use of social media. What follows is an invaluable insight (clip should start at 26:12) ..

Kenilworth resident hailed as Google+ hometown hero

Google has recognised Kenilworth resident, Mike Downes as a hometown hero for making the most of the Internet to chat with over 20,000 people from around the world, including Olympic Champion, Usain Bolt, Spice Girl, Mel C, and Radio 1 presenter Reggie Yates

Through Google+ Mike has participated in more than 1,500 Google+ Hangouts - internet-based video chats – with academics, athletes, scientists and celebrities to discuss topics ranging from astrophysics to Team GB’s fantastic efforts at the Olympics.

Google’s recognition of Mike as a hometown hero comes after he helped Interpol, police in the UK and Canada to set-up pages on Google+ so they could hold live-streaming press conferences through Google+ Hangouts. Mike recently helped Interpol and Toronto Police to set up a press conference on Google+ during the search for a Canadian serial killer that fled to Berlin.

Mike has also worked with media organisations including KOMU TV in the USA, to teach them about using Google+ Hangouts on Air – live streaming mobile video - as a tool for reporters to file stories from remote locations.

It’s hoped that Mike’s use of Google+ will inspire others in Kenilworth and Warwickshire to get online and begin connecting with like minded people across the world.

Mike Downes said: “Google+ gives anyone the ability to connect with people who share similar passions and interests at the click of a button.”

“I have been on Google+ for a little over a year now and I’ve already connected with over 20,000 people from across the globe. There is no reason why businesses and individuals in Warwickshire can’t set up a Google+ and begin ‘hanging out’”

“My experience of Google+ has been fantastic as it allows me to connect with people locally and from across the globe”.

Anoek Eckhardt, Communications and Public Affairs Manager at Google said: “Mike is a great ambassador for Google+. His interaction with thousands of people from across the world to share knowledge, advice and learn together highlights the collaborative power of Google+.”

“We hope others from across Kenilworth and throughout Warwickshire follow Mike’s lead to connect and Hangout with family, friends and like minded people through Google+.”

Today over 400 million people have signed up to Google+. Google+ also has a very strong photo community, over 3.4 billion photos have already been shared.

You can connect and Hangout with Google’s hometown hero, Mike Downes on Google+ here .

To chat with Google+ hometown hero Mike Downes, please contact the Google Press Office at or 0207 031 3130

Are you Hangout On Air Ready? Watch the help tutorial and then read the slides

This post is all about getting ready to Hangout On Air, so little gained from writing, just watch and see the slides, plenty of tips.

The full screen Video

The older Video (with white borders)

The Slide Show

How to video Tutorials by Mike Downes (25 videos)

If you are interested in learning how to broadcast better Hangouts, here are twenty videos, pick and choose as you go. If you have a question, just ask

The New Video

The Older Video


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