JD Lasica has an extensive background in user-created media. Besides being a board member of the Media Bloggers Association, he’s a multimedia writer, co-founder of both Darknet and OurMedia, and president of the Social Media Group. Tired of the celebrity-driven culture fed to us by today’s media, Lasica created the Real People Network, showcasing interviews with real people (and occasional celebrities). He stumbled upon the inspiration for his first post in January 2006. Lasica encourages vloggers to run their vlogs on his site, as long as they meet his fairly simple criteria: be a real person, be creative, and have video content.
Although there are occasional home videos and content cross-posted from other vlogs, the site is focused mainly on cataloguing Lasica’s interviews with media professionals in 3- to 5-minute installments. Categorized by blogs, books, citizen journalism and media, film, law, moblogs (mobile blogs), music, podcasts, site news, remixes, tech, television, vlogs, and web, this man has been able to talk to everybody involved in independent content. From Elisabeth Shue, speaking out on behalf of Creative Commons, to Jack Valenti, head of the MPAA for over a quarter of a century, Lasica never varies his reporting style no matter whom he can squirrel into his hot seat. Shot on the street, in cafes, and outside convention centers, he asks his subjects to introduce themselves and prompts them with just enough questions to get them talking. Like in this interview with Josh Kinberg of FireAnt, Lasica prods enough to steer the conversation, but otherwise lets his guest talk unrestrained. It’s a simple but effective method that works well with the site’s casual, industry-specific videos.
It’s rare to find an industry vlog that’s casual without brimming with jokes. Besides being genuinely insightful, his interview with Michael Geoghegan, producer of Grape Radio and author of Podcast Solutions, is a great example of how to do a high quality tech podcast on a small budget. Know your subject matter, don’t be too peppy or too reserved, keep it short, and let your guests talk about that which they know most.