Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Quarter of a million YouTube viewings

At the end of last week, I hit a milestone on my YouTube channel - quarter of a million viewings of all my videos. It's odd to think that two years ago, I have hundreds of video clips shot all over the planet yet I had no audience for them. Very different now and I still have hundreds of clips to edit and post up, especially after my recent visit to East Africa and Madagascar.

Travel video viewings still outstrip my political ones but the number of viewers I have for the latter are growing. Anyway, here's my top ten with viewing figures:

1) 46,691 Inside a former secret Soviet Submarine Base, Balaklava, Ukraine - I filmed this in October 2006 and surprisingly, it has now grabbed the top slot. If you are in to submarines and nuclear fallout bunkers, this is the video for you!

2) 46,650 Copacabbana Beach - One of the best beaches on the planet, if a little busy with sunbathers and joggers. If you are ever in Rio de Janiero, find time to visit. I made this video in December 2005.

3) 23,297 A Trip on the London Eye - Filmed this in September 2005. If you suffer from vertigo, this is definitely for you!

4) 12,666 Cuba's 2nd city: Santiago de Cuba - Rather surprised this one has such a following. The Havana video I shot on the same trip to Cuba in June 2006 has had less than 1000 viewings.

5) 8,968 Egypt: Pyramids and the Sphinx - I filmed this in November 2004. I was surprised how close the pyramids are to the centre of Cairo.

6) 7,271 Orang utans in Borneo Feeding time for a group of orphaned orang utans in a place called Sepilok, Borneo. I filmed it in November 2002 on a trip to the Far East.

7) 6,154 A view from the Petronas Towers - I think at the time I filmed this on the Sky Bridge on the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, capital of Malaysia, in November 2002, it was the tallest building in the world. It has since been overtaken.

8) 3,206 Gauchos and horse riding, Argentina - This one is rising fast. I filmed it in December 2005 when on a ranch in Argentina about 100km from Buenos Aires.

9) 3,061 Port of Batumi, Georgia - another one that surprises me for being in the top 10. I visited Georgia on the Black Sea in October 2006. I suspect this one is popular with Georgian expats.

10) 2,805 Battle of Trimdon Green - my top political video and the one that probably put an end (for the time being) to the Robert Mugabe style of democracy Labour endorses in their strong areas. This was filmed in July 2007 in Sedgefield when a Labour mob invaded the meeting that was to launch the Lib Dem campaign for the by-election to replace Tony Blair. Labour tried to break up the meeting physically. But once this video appeared on YouTube, Tyne Tees Television and a large number of Lib Dem blogs, Labour dropped these tactics. Don't expect such renewed adherence to open democracy and free speech to last long. The narrow minded Mugabeites of Labour will be back.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Clegg visits Cowley St - more exclusive photos

Nick Clegg came to Cowley St yesterday to talk to staff. We were packed into the board room to meet him. Exclusive photos of the event......

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Photos from the Leadership Declaration

Another photo exclusive of sorts (ignoring the fact the room was full of other photographers!) but here are the photos I took at the declaration yesterday of the new Leader.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

It was a shock to the system

Having arrived back from Kenya on Tuesday, I suffered 2 shocks to the system. Firstly, it was so damned cold! We looked in stunned amazement at frost on everything, having hours before been wandering around in shorts in temperatures of abour 40C.

Secondly we realised Christmas is coming up. That was probably more of a shock to the system. So last night we went down to the Metrocentre, that great cathedral to the gods of retail, though not quite as full of worshippers as I had feared. Still it was bad enough. And frankly, I didn't get any shopping done though I did do a good performance as a bag carrier for David. He will have to do my shopping for me through the week for, strangely, there is an event coming along this coming week that is likely to occupy a modest amount of my time.

And now for something completely different. This is me getting covered in snakes in Kenya: Snake Video

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Cowley St Xmas Party - exclusive photos!

The Cowley St Xmas party was held last night and here are some of the exlusive photos I took before leaving to catch a train home to Tyneside.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Shooting elephants (on camera and video)

National Express took over the franchise for the East Coast Line from GNER recently. Having been out of the country for 15 days, tonight is my first experience of their running the route. I am leaving Kings Cross heading home now.

I nearly didn't have my seat though that was not caused by National Express. Instead, I found my seat occupied by a bloke stuffing his face with a big mac and occupying the neighbouring seat with his bag. I politely told him he was in my seat. A significant amount of huffing and puffing followed by the angry packing up of his food took place. He then moved over to the seat behind me, which was also reserved. He then proceeded to have a loud conversation on his phone with someone to whom he was rude, demanding and foul-mouthed.

Anyway, for those interested, I have been in Africa and on the Indian Ocean for the past two weeks. Two weeks of taking photos of elephants and lions in Kenya, visiting a spice farm in Zanzibar, swimming with turtles in the Comoro Islands and paddling a kayak in Madagasgar. I will post up the entries from my diary over the next few days, along with some of the 1100 photos and 3 hours of video I shot. (This is actually 500 fewer photos than I took last year when I went on a cruise around the Black Sea).

I have also just left the Cowley St Xmas party. Photos to follow tomorrow.

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Back to delayed trains

Having just spent two weeks on the Indian Ocean, I have returned to find every train I wanted to catch is delayed. Last night it was the Gatwick to Victoria. Now it is the West Croydon to Victoria, delayed for an unknown reason. I have to catch a train to Newcastle tonight. Troubles come in threes!

I have avoided newspapers, internet and tv for 2 weeks and my blackberry was switched on only twice during the time I was away. So I have no idea about any news from the past fortnight. Has anything happened?
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