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How Come HNN's Not Videotaping a Lot of Sessions This Year?Historians in the News
Since 2003 HNN has been providing full coverage of the annual conventions of the AHA and the OAH. Once we got a camera, we began videotaping individual panel sessions. But both the AHA and now the OAH have adopted policies requiring advance notice. This makes it impossible for us to cover the conventions as we have in the past.
While it is possible to anticipate in advance how some sessions might go and which ones are likely to draw a crowd, there's no guarantee our requests for permission to film will be granted. This year the OAH turned down our request to cover two events, the Business Meeting, and ironically, the plenary session, Historians and Their Publics. One historian on the plenary panel reportedly objected to cameras. The OAH rule is that if a single presenter objects, no one is filmed.
The OAH itself is recording half a dozen or so panels. Videotapes of those sessions will be posted on the OAH website. We'll let HNN readers know when the videos go up.
We frankly miss the days when we could roam the halls, see which panels were drawing a crowd or just plain seemed interesting, and just walk in and set up a camera. Our videotapes of those sessions often drew eight or nine hundred views.
We always gave presenters the right on the spot not to be taped. Only a few ever objected.
Instead of taping sessions we are now doing interviews in most cases.
CSPAN filmed two sessions Thursday, both 1964 retrospectives: one on the election of 1964 and one on the Mississippi Summer Project. We will let our readers know when those go online.
HNN would have been allowed to film those sessions. We chose not to duplicate CSPAN's efforts.
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