Making it Rain With Relief Funding

Posted on July 30, 2020

Michael Scott from the Office

Today’s Buzz is brought to you by Jennifer Casey, Public Information Officer for the Town of Collierville, TN. @ me: Twitter & LinkedIn.

  • What I’m Reading: Little Fires Everywhere
  • What I’m Listening to: An Oral History of the Office
  • What I’m Watching: Brooklyn Nine-Nine

I have big COVID CARES Act dreams for my communications department. In fact, I feel as if I have won the lottery and I plan on spending that money FAST. Well, I do have to spend it fast, so that aspect isn’t a dream.

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However, my requests may be a little unrealistic.

I’d like audio visual upgrades in our chamber room and all conference rooms, a new website and emergency communications software, and upgrade an existing auditorium in one of our historic buildings to be used as a backup location for board meetings.

In addition to the half a million dollars in asks I have planned (you can go ahead and laugh), I actually do have realistic purchases to help us better communicate when we’re in a pinch. For example, those Facebook live conversations that need some decent lighting and sound, backup and external batteries for cameras and smartphones, or a popup green-screen for a on the go press conference (or fun zoom background when it’s not in use, right?)

To help give me some technical advice for my media needs, I reached out to Kerry Shearer “the Livestream Expert”. I’ve seen Kerry at a few different conferences over the years, and besides just being a downright likable guy, he really knows his stuff! He also responded to my email request in just a couple of hours, which is great, because I am ready to go on my shopping spree.

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Kerry gave me a fantastic list that is short, budget friendly, and something I thought my fellow ELGLers would enjoy seeing:

  1. Rode NTG Shotgun mic
    • Why: This is a great shotgun mic to be paired with a DSLR camera when shooting video with natural sound or even unplanned interviews. It will also work with your smartphone with no need for additional audio adapters, making it the most versatile and professional shotgun mic.
    • About: This is Rode’s newest shotgun mic. It is unique, in that you never have to mess with adapter plugs. Internal circuitry senses what you’re connecting to (video/DSLR camera or smartphone) and makes all adjustments internally, automatically.
    • Purchase link: Price is $249
  2. GVM mobile smartphone shooting mount and integrated LED light
    • Why: This is very convenient for handheld or tripod mobile shooting where an integrated light is required for proper interview illumination.
    • About: This device is unique. It mounts to a tripod, allows attachment of other devices such as the Rode shotgun or wireless receiver, and has powerful built in lighting that is dimmable. It uses up to two Sony-compatible batteries which last a long time on a charge. Way more portable than a ring light. Get the extra batteries I recommend also.
    • Purchase links:
  3. Dual cold shoe mount for top of DSLR camera
    • Why: This allows you to clip on both your shotgun mount or wireless receiver, and a video light, using a cold shoe. I included a mounting adapter in case there is anything you wish to mount (like the Lume Cube lights) which have a screw thread on the bottom for attachment.
    • Purchase links:
  4. Anker Powercore 26,800ma battery for smartphone backup power
    • Why: This will recharge and power your phone when you’re livestreaming or recording a long event. This recommendation is for the higher capacity model (their others are 20,000ma)
    • Purchase link: Price is $59.99


If you want to see more of his tech recommendations, check out his page here. It’s full of great products he’s actually used. Unfortunately, it’s not helping my desire to scale down my spending.


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