Setting up a podcaster’s “Go” Bag

Steve at the control board of WRLB-FM, Long Branch, NJ, about 1979. Steve at the control board of WRLB-FM, Long Branch, NJ, about 1979.

In broadcasting, reporters always have a “Go” bag in the car so they never have to scramble for their recording tools when they go out on assignment, especially for spot news. Steve worked as a radio reporter back in the 1970s when the latest technology was a handheld portable cassette recorder and a patch cord with a mini plug on one end and alligator clips on the other.

Patch cable with alligator clips for transmitting audio over telephone. (Courtesy Larry Litwin)

Patch cable with alligator clips for transmitting audio over telephone. (Courtesy Larry Litwin)

Back then, there was no Internet or wireless access, so if you wanted to transmit audio back to the radio station, you found a pay phone, unscrewed the mouthpiece, took out the little carbon microphone, and attached the alligator clips to the little prongs in the handset. You plugged the minplug into the earphone jack of your recorder and pressed play. At the other end of the call, the newsperson at the radio station would be running a tape recorder to capture the audio you fed over the phone.

Today, with digital recordings and Internet access nearly ubiquitous, you can deliver your audio podcast reports to a waiting world in seconds. But you still have to have the equipment with you if you want to do it! That’s why you still need a “Go” Bag.

Dennis Nishi has listed some good ideas for a radio reporter Go Bag.

Download Steve’s Radio News Reporter Go Bag Checklist here.

 

 

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