Posts Tagged ‘Studio’

Television Production – Lesson Fourteen, Babies, Toddlers and Children Inside the Television Studio

May 7th, 2021

This is a touchy subject when it comes to community access television. After all, usually our audiences are moms, dad, guardians, babysitters or teachers of children, and if not, they probably are related to children in some way. And almost everyone loves children. So, what do you do with children in the community access television productions? No one wants to alienate anyone who brings babies or children inside the building but everyone wants everyone to be safe and secure once inside the building. So this article is to spread information that will keep babies and children safe and secure while inside of any studio building. Before I get deep into this topic I should discuss what the children are doing there, in the studio building. Children are in the building for these reasons (For one, some or more than one of these reasons):

Sometimes the talent, guests, hosts or co-hosts are children, teens, or young adults.
Sometimes the children are audience members.
Sometimes the children are there with their adults who are producers. The producers are doing their own shows or helping other producers in the other producer’s shows.
Sometimes there might be children of staff or administration present.
Any or all of the above can be possible. Now that I have listed the reasons why children, teens or young adults are in the studio, I can get down to the basics of what happens, and what you might want to do if children appear on your reservation time.

There are many shows, a large number of shows, that have children as talent and active participants in main parts of the show, so we welcome babies and children into the studio, as long as the babies and children are well-supervised at all times. This ensures their safety and security. So, whether the children are talent, invited guests, or producers’ children, we all have the safety and security of babies and children as our first priority. Everyone inside the studio building must be safe, or there will be no successful television production possible. A production with injury or loss is not successful. So, with success in mind, I will go on to talk about babies and children inside of the studio buildings. So, this article is not stating that children, teens and young people should not be inside the studio, but clearly stating that there are places that are not safe for babies and young children, so most Executive Producers do not want to see children in these places that are or could cause injuries to any young children. Injuries could be caused by heavy equipment, electronic equipment and also by strangers who might have entered the building. So to avoid these injuries, the best thing to do is to have children supervised at all times when children are in these places inside the studio building. So, by following these instructions, all children should be safe and supervised inside any of the studio buildings, no matter what borough you live in.

When you bring children inside the studio building, know and remember that you are responsible for these children. The other producers, staff, interns, guests, volunteers, hosts, co-hosts or talent are not responsible for any babies, toddlers or young children that you bring inside the building. Knowing this and remembering this will help you to keep them supervised and safe while you visit the building. Many people forget this because there are so many people around. It is easy to take your eye of a child while some other adult is speaking with the child or paying attention to that child.
Know that the Security Guard is protecting your child when he or she tells you that your child is not permitted inside the conference room or permitted inside any other area of the studio building without constant adult supervision. That makes good, common sense. Many strangers come into the building at all times of day. You would not expect to leave your baby or child unattended with a stranger, so you are not going to leave your child unattended with strangers in the conference room, or any of the other areas of the studio building. While all this might seem like unnecessary rules to you because you feel comfortable and safe in the studio building, these are necessary rules for babies and children since the studio is not a place that was designed with babies or children in mind. So, leaving any baby or child unattended in any area of the studio building is like inviting a baby or child into a factory and leaving them alone. No reasonable parent or guardian would do that. So, if anyone reminds you that children need to be supervised, kindly take that as a friendly gesture that is helping to protect your child from injury or loss.
If and when you bring babies or children inside of the studio area (where producers tape shows), be alert that no one brings liquids inside the area. These liquids ruin equipment and the equipment is extremely expensive to replace. Besides being a financial responsibility, any liquids that come in contact with any of the equipment causes a possible electrical or fire danger to anyone nearby. Liquids and electricity has never ever mixed well when it comes to any electrical, camera or sound equipment. One of the reasons for the dressing room is so that parents and producers have a place to enjoy their meals, drinks and other snacks while they are at the studio building.
How Parents and Guardians Enjoy the Studio Experience:
Wait (with babies and children) in the waiting area (usually near the Security Guard). This keeps all babies and children in full view of the Security Guard. Even though you are still fully responsible for their safety, the Security Guard adds another measure of safety, just be being there. (Most strangers will not bother or abduct babies or children while a uniformed Security Guard is present).
When it is time to go into the conference room, have your babysitter watch the children outside the conference room while you are inside the room. If the child is older and responsible, they might be able to come into the conference room. Just ask the Executive Producer and there should be no problem with that. (You will need to pre-arrange this with the Executive Producer so he or she is aware that you are bringing babies or children into the building).
Once you leave the conference room or the lobby area, bring all babies and children with you, wherever you go. If you go into the rest room, bring them there, unless you have a babysitter watching them somewhere else. If you go into the dressing room, bring them there. Do the same as you would do with your babies or children in any business situation.
Be alert, and have your child’s safety first in mind. Yes, the show must go on, and everyone works to make the production a success. But you, as the parent or guardian, have a job first, and that is your child’s safety and security. (Yes, I know you have that in mind always. But I mention that because being inside the studio is such an exciting experience for some babies and children, that it can sometimes be overwhelming to them. And this alone, can cause some babies and children to want to explore areas that they have not seen or been in before.
By following those ideas, all babies and children should be able to safely experience the television production process and shows. With safety in mind, that makes everyone happy. No one would want to put any baby or child in any danger, so following these ideas definitely makes the show run smoothly.

What Dangers?

Dangers of strangers inside the studio building. Anything at all is possible. So, know that there might be strangers inside the studio building. Even though everyone signs the security books upstairs and downstairs, everyone entering the building is usually a stranger to your child. You do not know their background, where they come from, how they live or even what they are in the studio building for.
Dangers of electrical exposure, fire hazards and things like that. The studio room has numerous electrical outlets, and all sorts of heavy, moveable electrical equipment, throughout the studio.
Moving hazards, most studios have robotics cameras that are controlled from inside the control room. So a baby or child could see this camera (robotic) moving all by itself and they might go over and try to handle, touch or move the camera. This causes great danger to the baby or child as these cameras are extremely heavy and can fall onto babies or children inside the studio area. This is one reason why parents and guardians must supervise babies and children at all times inside the studio building.
Heavy doors leading into the studio area and into other areas of the studio, control room, and dressing room. Any or all of these doors can close on little fingers causing great danger and hazard.
False Sense of Security:
This is very important. When producers and other people come into the building with children, they usually feel very comfortable because everyone is very friendly. They feel comfortable too, because they think that they know everyone. Feeling too comfortable here with babies and children is having a false sense of security. You need to feel like you are in a public building — which the studio is in a public building (one that anyone from outdoors can walk inside of ) . One of the reasons that some parents and guardians feel safe inside the studio building is because they know most of the people entering the building. Most are either friends, relatives, or co-producers, or producers they have worked with before. There are staff members, volunteers and interns that work there too, and most might be familiar with them also. However, there are, at times, complete strangers in the building. Hundreds of different people might enter the studio building during any given week (depending on the studio where you are). Some of those hundreds could be people who do not belong in the building. They might be people who belong in the building also, but still strangers, like plumbers, electricians, locksmiths, computer repair people, and any number of others that might enter the building. There have been people who have entered the building by mistake. They were looking for another building. So, not everyone that you see inside the studio building belongs in that particular building. I am not saying that the building is unsafe. What I am saying is that the building is not safe for babies or children who are left unattended. You would not leave children unattended out in the world, so it makes sense that babies and children are not left unattended inside the studio building.

What Is In The World Is In the Building:

Knowing that what is in the world is inside the building, that might open anyone’s eyes as to the many reasons why we (as producers) ask parents and guardians to supervise their babies and children once they are inside of the studio. What is in the world? Look around your outside world. Almost everything that is out there can be inside the building. Why? Because there are people inside the building and those people are from outside the building. There are all kinds of people with all kinds of values and all kinds of backgrounds. The world is a magnificent place and it is also a place where babies and children should be supervised. Ask yourself these questions:

What if people are discussing an adult topic? Do I want my children to hear this?
What if people argue? Do I want my baby or child to be around this?
What if two people begin fighting? Will my baby or child be in danger?
What if a large piece of heavy equipment falls, will my baby or child be protected if they are there unsupervised?
What if there is an electrical problem, will my baby or child be safe if they are unsupervised?
What if a fire breaks out, will my baby or child be safe if they are unsupervised?
What if an expensive equipment fails or is broken while my child is around unsupervised? Will I be responsible?
How will a studio experience be for my baby or child if they are left unsupervised in the building?
What if my baby or child is unsupervised, and I can not find them in the studio building?
If you ask yourself those questions then you will know why producers insist that babies and children have constant supervision at all times once inside the studio building. And many of those things have happened inside of different studio buildings in our own cities. They might not have happened while babies or children were around, but they have happened. Some reading this might think this article is too much or too restricting but supervision can never be too much when you are talking about having babies and children in an industrial-type area. Yes, there are times, when babies or children are needed in the studio area. They might be part of the show or they might even be the entire show! So, knowing this, you see that I am not trying to restrict the admission of babies or children inside the building but rather I am simply writing an article on how to keep babies and children safe and secure when they are in the building. All babies and children who are guests, hosts, co-hosts, audience members, and children of producers are welcome inside the building provided they are supervised at all times. So, knowing that, I invite you to thoroughly enjoy your studio experience, now that I have placed these few reminders out to the public in this article.

I am hoping that everyone reading this takes the article in the spirit that it is written, entirely for safety first for babies and children inside the building. I warmly welcome everyone to the studio for my own productions, including babies and children (with proper constant supervision). There have been many occasions where some producers have brought children to the show and they were properly supervised and they were a great asset to the show. I invited them back again. So, it definitely goes without saying that some of our shows are enhanced by the children’s presence.

Security:

Our particular building does have wonderful security guards who take care of what needs to be taken care of. Thank God for that. One of the things that does make producers and visitors feel secure is that our studio has uniformed security guards at the desk, and they have proven that they can handle any situation that arises. So, know that the studio has provided a means for safety, and that you need to help them out by being responsible for your own children or for the children that you bring inside the building.

That is all I have to say, for now, about the experiences of being inside the building with babies and children. I welcome any comments, questions or criticisms from my readers.