Monday, August 29, 2005

Rocketboom! Updated post from May

Rocketboom is here, via Doc.
Gotta have Quicktime installed to watch and hear. (Sorry, Bob.)
Vlogging is coming of age. This is a ten minute piece that is as authentic an interesting as anything on the evening news. Amanda is on the case and she's on the ball. First, a short piece about a building collapse in Brooklyn. Next, an extended interview with a family that tells of police brutality....still, after all the bad press.
This is exciting stuff. Not because the content is all that hot, but when the technology gets going, the whold world will become transparent. We just THINK we're connected now!

From the comments thread:

They portray us (Rocketboom) like we want to overthrow regular journalism.
We don't.

We are a show. And we are biased. We CAN and WILL show only one side of a story if we so desire. If you are looking for typical "journalism" you won't find it here.

PLEASE point to us and tell everyone why we are NOT the future of regular journalism. That is not what we are intending to do here.

But, for the record, I approached three or four different police officers from that precinct yesterday. None of them would speak to us. If anyone else would like to pursue them—do so! By all means. But I am not interested in chasing after them. May 20, 2005 11:34 AM

She's right.
This ain't your MSM evening news. The archive goes back into last year. Not all the links responded, but enough did to give a flavor of what Amanda Congdon is about.
I liked this one, especially the music.


May 22, Rocketboom makes the New York Times (Registration site, AND the story goes to a pay-to-read archive after a couple of weeks).

Funny? Want to be a Weatherperson?" read the ad, posted on May 9 on the Craigslist Web site. "If you think you're funny and at least one person outside of your immediate family concurs, please e-mail a copy of your resume and head shot."

Though the "job" in question was an unpaid gig with, a no-frills video blog shot five evenings a week in its creator's one-bedroom apartment on West 81st Street, more than 300 faux meteorologists clamored to try out, and two dozen were given audition slots, first come first served.

The team behind Rocketboom, a 34-year-old Web designer named Andrew Baron and a 23-year-old actress named Amanda Congdon, were the first to admit that they really had no clue what they were looking for. Rocketboom is a gently snarky daily newscast featuring Ms. Congdon sitting behind a desk made out of a fireplace screen turned sideways, with a $10 world map as backdrop. In the do-it-from-your-bedroom-in-your-boxers world of video blogs, one of the critical virtues is not to have even a whiff of television polish about you.

"Our audience likes things more natural," Ms. Congdon said of the 30,000 viewers, from Central Park West to Singapore, that the site attracts daily.

That reminds me.
I need to blog about Craigslist, the classified equivalent to for jobs.

This post was originally published May 21.
It is now the end of August and the numbers have more than doubled. Today's Rocketboom linked to their latest media blurb in Business Week Online.

Don't bother looking for Congdon on your cable channel lineup. Rocketboom is a video blog, posted at, and in 10 months it has become the mostpopular site of its kind on the Net. The brainchild of former musician Andrew Michael Baron, who writes the shows with Congdon, the three-minute mock news program covers everything from tech trends to pop culture with frank irreverence, sly humor, and a big dollop of unabashed silliness.

The approach is resonating with viewers. Daily downloads have doubled in the past six weeks, to 50,000. If they stay on that pace, they'll soon approach the 200,000 viewers of an established cable show, such as CNBC's Kudlow & Cramer. "There was this excitement early on that we videobloggers were at the forefront of something, but we didn't know what would happen," says Baron.

If you have fast access turn up the volume and have a look.

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