Aug 012006

Forget the Rules © Jim Shomos 2006.

The third of 8 podcasts recorded live during the LAMP lab on Milson Island, Sydney in July 2006 – in front of the eight teams and ten mentors developing emerging media projects.

jim shomos“this is such a new area that really the door is open for anybody with anything creative and innovative, particularly with drama, to really stand out in this industry. It’s a great opportunity…but nobody really knows anything”

Jim Shomos was the Executive Producer of Forget the Rules the first comedy drama in the world to broadcast over broadband, mobile phones and cable TV.

“We didn’t think when we were starting this out that it was going to be the first – we didn’t even think it was going to be on TV, we weren’t even sure about mobile, but that’s the way it’s all come out.”

Forget the Rules ran on Channel V, Hutchison 3 mobile phones and on the web and consisted of 9 minutes of drama produced every week featuring audience driven story directions. Audiences voted on a choice of 3 possible story directions, the show was shot on Saturday and was broadcast each Monday throughout the season. Because of the rapid turnaround stories were highly topical and responsive to genuine audience input and was limited to an M rating. Jim talks about putting the deals together, attracting investment and coming up with the right business models.

He talks about appealing to story literate young audiences through interactivity, but points out that they have to be offered genuine input to the story to ensure success. Jim thinks young audiences need “more story per minute” and emphasised the importance of fast paced stories with rapid developments, particularly for short form content.

All LAMP podcasts are also published through the iTunes store.


Jim is the creator of the acclaimed cross-media service Forget the Rules. He devised the concept and format and with his partners Paul Baiguerra and Peter Dixon from Catfish they made a ground-breaking drama across mobile, broadband PC and TV. Jim also has an extensive business and marketing background.Jim Shomos and Paul Baiguerra met at the Digital Media Conference run by Film Victoria on 1 July 2004. It was business at first sight, they say: by the end of the day, the basic outline for forget the rules was laid down. Paul got his business partner at Catfish, Peter Dixon, involved and Global Dilemma was born. Forget the Rules was Global Dilemma’s first production. FTR is the first comedy/drama series in the world to broadcast all episodes on TV, broadband and mobiles. The first season was broadcast on Channel V/Foxtel, 3 mobiles and the FTR website. The 13-week season was made up of 3×3min episodes per week between 10 October 2005 and 8 January 2006. The 117 minutes of production represents the equivalent of 5 x 30min episodes on FTA TV.

In 1998, he studied writing and feature film production at AFTRS in Sydney. He has worked as a copywriter on Sale of The Century, a storyliner on Neighbours (15 hours credits) and is a published songwriter.

Sydney 3 July 2006 – Time 29:20.
Click to listen

Audio edit and description – P Giles. mp3 prep/post G Hayes

May 292006

Thinking Big on the Small Screen © Keren Flavell 2006.

Recorded live and unedited during the LAMP lab in Perth in May 2006 in front of the seven teams developing emerging media projects.

Keren FlavellKeren looks broadly at the business, creative and future implications of the mobile industry. Beginning with a ‘branded Octopus’ metaphor Keren approaches “Thinking Big on the Small Screen” from the key perspective of mobile being an offshoot of the web and saying how it should be allowed to grow organically in the same way. The key challenges she raises with the independent content producer at the moment include how to reach the audiences, the skill of platform targeted service design, how to distribute content on and off portal and how to make money from all of this. With 2.5 billion mobiles in the world we are seeing more and more people accessing the internet via mobiles yet content providers are not creating mobile friendly sites and content delivered via this IP route.

Keren then talks about mass niche, the broadcast model evolved to personalized content that is relevant and timely to individuals. The mobile device at the moment is the most appropriate for this kind of personalized content but highly under utilised. She talks further about creating a richer experience on the next generation of devices that can handle much richer media and more importantly ubiquitous application environments such as Flash. Among the range of tips that Keren gives are: a) if you are creating services use the expertise of each operator to format your content for the vast range of devices on the market, dont waste time trying to do it yourself, b) if you go it alone then make sure people can get to your content using a range of referrals (she talks about semacode for example) and c) also try to build a community up around your content. She mentions that people are just waking up to mms sharing and that we all should be encouraging this activity as content providers by integrating this into our services.

In summing up Keren talks about usuability, relevance and experience. The quality of service is critical, if a game or video download fails then people will not go back and buy more. She talks about some innovative community services such as Funky, Sexy, Cool – a simple peer voting application that really grows communities using this as an example to point out that localised partners are critical to its success. As a final point she says there are real opportunities in building users through services that draw audiences into sharing, distributing, creating and involved in topical discussion – web 2.0 on mobiles.

All LAMP podcasts are also published through the iTunes store.

KEREN FLAVELL – Interactive Producer

Keren Flavell is an award-winning producer with over 10 years experience in interactive media production, documentary, radio and print, taking projects from conception through to production to sales and distribution. While heading up digital media production company, Springtime Productions, she won the prestigious Gold Hugo Award at the Chicago International Film Festival – Best Entertainment Website for the ABC/Film Victoria Digital Media Fund Accord project Sounds Like Techno.She also produced online documentary projects for SBS and Chunky Move. Keren’s other credits include producing major websites for BMG, Universal Music and Sanity. Keren is frequently engaged as a consultant on interactive media production strategy and implementation and her clients include ACMI (Australian Centre for the Moving Image), Jack Morton Worldwide, Southern Cross Cables, Royal Children’s Hospital and MusicMate.

Presently she is on the Lab3000 steering committee and AIMIA Victoria sub-committee. Keren has been a speaker at events such as the AIMIA conference, AIDC, Adelaide Festival FutureProof and lectured in new media production at Victoria College of the Arts, La Trobe University and Victoria University.
She is course director of the Development for Mobile Content course, run by AFTRS. Keren is the convenor of Mobile Monday Melbourne networking event and hosts a weekly podcast called the Mobile Media Show as well as a regular guest position on technology show Byte Into It (3RRRFM).She also runs a mobile entertainment network blog called Prior to launching into a career in new media Keren wrote a guidebook titled Camping and Tramping in Australia’s National Parks (Random House) that has sold over 20,000 copies and reprinted five times.

Perth 10 May 2006
Click to listen

Oct 162005

Residential mentors October 2005 Lab

Below are the mentors that took part in the Victor Harbour residential LAMP Lab from 9-14 October 2005

Catherine Gleeson- Interaction Designer

Catherine GleesonCatherine has been working as a Creative Director in print and new media since 1988. She has extensive experience in information design and visual communication. Her projects include: creative direction of visitor multimedia for the National Gallery of Victoria’s (NGV), Centre for Australian Art at Federation Square.

Past work includes consultation, creative direction and design on local and international projects for clients such as: the National Geographic (Washington); the Smithsonian Institute (Washington); the American Museum of Natural History (New York); Foster’s Brewing Group; Lonely Planet and ANZ.

Through her company Platform09, Catherine also maintains a separate creative practice. Past projects have included: collaborative, installation work for Experimental; motion graphics, animation and multimedia design for theatre, film and video.

Christy Dena – Transmedia Storyteller

Christy DenaChristy is a world wide, leading practitioner and researcher in cross-media narrative, new media types and their creative application in emerging media. In this area she has contributed numerous articles and reviews to publications such as Australian Book Review, ABC Arts Online and RealTime.

Christy’s work has been referred to in The Age, Encore and in a recent report delivered at the European Commission DG Information Society. Her published articles have covered game-play, artificial intelligence and new narrative forms and she has written creative works for TV, theatre and multi-platform. Christy’s latest visionary work ‘The Villager Girl and the Teenbot’ bridges the gap between print and online chatbot technology.

In 1993 she was nominated for ‘Young Business Person of the Year’ and shortly after worked as a digital effects/TVC producer, business director and web developer. In 2002 she gained a postgraduate diploma in Creative Writing and is currently a Ph.D.candidate in New Media at the School of Creative Arts, Uni of Melbourne. She also teaches new media arts theory at Melbourne and Swinburne Universities, is on the Editorial Committee of New Antigone (a fully refereed international journal), co-edits a renowned site on new media arts,, and runs a popular research blog,

Gary Hayes, Director LAMP@AFTRS

Gary HayesGary Hayes has been at the forefront of worldwide emerging media development and production since 1993. After joining the BBC in London as an editor he quickly moved on to lead the BBC’s development of the internet, interactive TV and emerging platforms from 95-04 as Senior Producer and Development Manager. The BBC grew from a linear broadcaster to world leader in cross-platform services during this period.

Gary devised & produced many of the BBC’s ‘firsts’ – Digital Text, the first broadcast interactive TV service – ‘Nomad’ the first live internet documentary – ‘X-Creatures’ the first broadband TV service and in ’96 introduced the first video and audio onto the BBC’s internet sites. He also produced and devised over 20 other eTV and broadband TV services including Top of the Pops, Travel Show, State Apart and several future BBC cross-platform navigators. Gary created numerous courses and seminars on Interactive thinking for linear producers and was a leading part of BBC strategy teams from 2001 in preparing for on-demand, cross-platform services. He also chaired the Business Models Group from 99-03 for TV-Anytime (the lead media-on-demand standards body).

Living & consulting in the US during 2004 he line produced Showtime’s PVR enhanced L-Word, as part of AFI digital labs and devised a range of new on-demand program formats for two national TV networks. Gary also produced & chaired conferences around LA including Hollywood industry panel seminars and Digital Days both looking at emerging media super-distribution models. He has presented at over fifty major international conferences and written several consultancy papers including US Interactive TV Advertising and more recently a report for the DTI on Personal Video Enablers for the UK media industry. He runs a blog on Media Personalisation at and an Interactive producers site at

A specialist in personalised digital TV over broadcast and broadband networks Gary evangelises on the empowerment potential of non-passive media. As a published music producer, composer and performer he has had over 200 works performed live and on TV and Radio. Gary ran his own music production business from 1984-89 and is currently working on several film scores.

Jackie Turnure, Non-linear storyteller

Jackie TurnureWith script editing and writing experience in both traditional and new media, Jackie Turnure brings a unique perspective to the role of narrative in cross media production. For the last 15 years she has been working across film, television, games and online production, with a particular focus on animation and children