Glossary

[accordion openfirst=true clicktoclose=true tag=h3]

[accordion-item title=”Anchor Desk” id=anchor-desk]A desk or desk-like piece of furniture that can accommodate one more anchors. Some anchor desks may require the anchors to stand, while others are designed with chairs or a combination of seated and standing talent.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Back Light” id=back-light]One of the two additional lights in a three-point lighting setup. This light is located above and behind the subject and is designed to provide a soft splash of light around the edges of the subject, preventing it from blending into the background. [/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Bug” id=bug]The small logo that appears in one corner of the screen. Typically this is a station logo and may appeared with a semi-transparent “ghosted” or “glassed” effect. Some bugs are animated and may transition between any number of logos (such as the station logo, show logo or other images). Bugs may also include social media profile handles or hashtags.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Bumper” id=bumper]A general term for a shot or graphic that’s used at the end of one segment or block or at the end of the show. [/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Chin Fill” id=chin-fill]A small, compact light unit built into an anchor desk or other similar set piece that provides lighting to the talent’s face, chin and neck.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Credit Line” id=credit-line]A small line of text that indicates the source of the video or still image being shown. Many stations now also include a unique design for when an image is taken from a social network that includes the social network’s logo and user’s handle.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Dayparts” id=dayparts]In TV news, a daypart is a blanket term for each time of day that includes newscasts. In a broad sense, the most common dayparts or early morning, morning, midday, afternoon, early evening, evening, (late) night and overnight, though there is a wide variation of terms. In some cases, the term daypart may also be used, somewhat incorrectly, to refer to a specific newscast.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Debrief” id=debrief]A general term for when a reporter, at the conclusion of a package, stands or sits at the anchor desk and interacts with the anchors.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Dimmer” id=dimmer]A general term for the technology that controls the brightness of a light. Dimmers can be controlled by DMX.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”DMX” id=dmx]Short for “digital mulitplex,” a blanket term for systems that control studio and stage lighting systems. Depending on manufacturer configuration, DMX systems can typically control the timing and brightness (among other factors) of studio lighting as well as store multiple “scenes.”[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Double Box” id=double-box]A graphic used when transitioning from one story to another, and most often live shots, that shows two or more talent on camera, typically side-by-side in two distinct boxes. The arrangement and size of the boxes may vary. Some stations refer to these as “2 boxes” or a “toss box” and there are also varieties for 3, 4, 5 or more talent.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Duratran” id=duratran]The collective term for a backlit graphical background. Typically consists of a large format printed graphic on a semi-translucent stock lit from behind. Short for durable transparency. Sometimes referred to as simply a “dura.” Also known as a dura or durable transparency.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Fill Light” id=fill-light]One of the two additional lights in a three-point lighting setup. This light is typically located in front of but off to one one side and above the subject, typically talent, and is meant to help eliminate shadows caused by the key light. [/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Footcandle” id=footcandle]The amount of illumination the inside surface of a one-foot-radius sphere would be receiving if there were a uniform point source of one candela in the exact center of the sphere. Abbreviated fc, lm/ft2, or ft-c.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Frosted Plexi” id=frosted-plexi]A general term for Plexiglas that is either manufactured to be semi-translucent or an effect achieved by applying semi-translucent cut vinyl on clear plexi.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Header” id=wall header]A general term for the uppermost part of a set. This area is typically provided more for shoot-offs.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Home Base” id=home-base]The primary area of a set. Typically this is where a broadcast begins or orginates from most of the time. On most news sets, this is the anchor desk.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Interview Area” id=interview-area]A general term for the area of the set designed to accommodate interviews. Interview sets often will include seating, either traditional chairs or high stools, for one or more talent and one or more guests. Additional furniture may include side tables, a coffee table-style piece and decorative items. On many sets, the interview furniture can be removed so the area can be used for standups, demonstrations, performances or other uses.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Key Light” id=key-light]The primary light in the three-point lighting setup. This light provides the primary illumination of the subject, typically talent and is typically positioned in front of and above the talent.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”L-Bar” id=l-bar]A general term for when the primary image of a program is shrunk down slightly, leaving space to one side and either top or bottom. This space is referred to as an L-bar and typically includes a branded design with additional text, images or video feeds. L-bars are commonly used for digital subchannels that offer the latest repeat of a station’s newscast, with current information such as weather conditions or news headlines shown in the L-bar. L-bars are also sometimes used to “push back” regular network or syndicated programming for promotional uses as well as for breaking news headlines or closings information.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”LED” id=led]Short for light emitting diode. LED is a technology that uses thousands of miniature light sources that can display red, green or blue. When the LEDs are small enough and viewed collectively from far enough away, the result is an image that has thousands of colors. LED’s advantages include lower power usage, relatively cool operating temperatures and the ability to be thinner and even flexible. Custom LED panels can be of almost any size or shape.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”LED Paper” id=led-paper]Ultra-thin LED panels that are bendable and therefore can be curved.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”LED Ribbon” id=led-ribbon]A general term for any long band of LED surface. Frequently used to create real-life tickers in architectural settings or on sets.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Live Bug” id=live-bug]A line of text that appears when the video behind shown is live. Some networks or stations opt to use the live bug even when the video being shown is from tape, but the anchor is reading the story live.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Live Shot Toss” id=live-shot-toss]A general term for when an in-studio anchor transitions to a field reporter. Often the reporter’s image will appear on an on-set monitor or video wall, creating the illusion that the anchor and reporter are speaking face to face to each other.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Locator Line” id=locator-line]A general term for a graphic that identifies where the video being shown was shot.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Lower Third” id=lower-third]A general term for any graphic that appears in the lower portion of the screen. The graphic may take up a third of the screen or less. Most lower thirds are used to identify a person appearing on screen or what the current story being reported is about. Lower thirds can also be used to provide additional facts about the story or branding specific to the show or segment.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Lumen” id=lumen]A unit of measure that defines the brightness of a light. Lumens are also used to express the brightness of video projectors.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Multipurpose Area” id=multipurpose-area]A general term for the area of a set that can be used for more than one purpose. A common configuration is an area that can accommodate demonstrations (often with a kitchen-height counter or table moved in), performances such as musical numbers or dance and an interview area (often with furniture moved into to position). Abbreviated L3.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”OTS” id=ots]Short for “over the shoulder.” Refers to a graphic, typically square or rectangular, that appears to one side of the anchor. The graphic typically will relate to the story the anchor is reading or, in some cases, may simply be a generic image with the station’s branding, for example. Most OTS graphics are superimposed by a computer, with the studio camera framing the talent off-center to allow room for the graphic. Some variations of OTSs could more accurately be described as “next to the shoulder” but the OTS term is generally used in these cases as well. An OTS can also refer to the tactic of using an on-set video monitor or video wall to have a graphic appear behind and to the side of the anchor.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Phoner Graphic” id=phoner-graphic]A graphic, typically fullscreen or a lower third, used during phone reports, often when little or no video is available. The graphic typically includes a still photo of the person on the phone (or in cases when a photo is unavailable, a silhoutte). Many phoner graphics also include a stock photo or rendering of a phone or dial pad.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Plexi” id=plexi]Short for Plexiglas, the trade name for a faux glass surface used frequently in set design due to its lower case, higher durability and lighter weight. Also referred to as plex.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Pod” id=pod]A general term for a piece of furniture for talent to stand behind. Typically a pod is differentiated from an anchor desk by its size. A pod may accommodate one or more people and may be movable. Some pods are designed for specific reasons, such as weather or traffic reports, and may have built-in workstations to allow talent to access computer systems while on the air.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Rear Projection” id=rear-projection]A type of large format display that includes screen material stretched over the opening in a set wall with a video or still projector situated behind the set. The projector beams video or images via a strong beam of light, which is caught by the screen material. A key advantage of rear projection, as opposed to front projection, is that it allows talent to stand directly in front of it. Sometimes referred to as RP.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Riser” id=riser]A raised platform on a set that helps ensure talent is better situated at the correct height in front of cameras. Risers can be rectangular, curved or a combination of both. Most risers are 6 to 12 inches high and may features one or more stair treads.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Rundown” id=rundown]A general term for a graphic, often either displayed on the side or bottom of the screen, that shows the segments coming up. In some cases, the graphics will also include the time the segment is expected to air.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Scenes” id=scenes]In lighting design, scenes refer to a present configuration of the studio lighting. A scene may be stored, for example, for different talent who, due to skin or hair tone variations, need different lighting cues. Scenes may also be stored to only light specific areas of the set or to create unique looks for different dayparts.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Shoot Off” id=shoot-off]A portion of the set designed to cover empty studio space or obscure unwanted items in the studio. Typically shoot-off walls or panels are only seen in wide or toss shots and can be made of structural walls, simple fabric draping, printed graphics or temporary, mobile panels or walls.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Sidebar” id=sidebar]A general term for a graphic that, similar to an OTS, appears to one side of an anchor but, instead of a single dominant image like in an OTS, features textual information, often arranged in bullet format.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Signature” id=signature]The highly recognizable portion of a news music package that’s repeated throughout the entire package, albeit in different tempos, styles and renditions.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Snipe” id=snipe]A small graphic that generally appears at the bottom or corner of the screen, that promotes an upcoming program during another one. Many TV stations insert these over primetime network programming to promote upcoming newscasts. Common designs include using the station logo or still images or video of the anchors along with text that describes the upcoming content.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Sponsor Slate” id=sponsor-slate]A graphic, typically fullscreen, that shows the logo of one or more advertisers. A common design technique is to use a photo or video clip of the show’s set as a background behind the logos. Other designs include photos or video from around the viewing area and branded graphics.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Stinger” id=stinger]The term for a short, quick sound effect or musical cue, often accompanied by a transition or wipe. Can also refer to the graphic itself.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Ticker” id=ticker]A general term for a horizontal band of text containing text-based information. The text on many tickers moves from right to left, though others may simply transition from one line of text to another. Tickers may display news headlines, promotions, additional information, weather information, sports scores, closings information or a variety of other text-based information.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Tier” id=tier]Another word for each individual line in a lower third. Typically the main, or primary line is referred to as the first tier, even though it may not be the first one that appears when viewed from top to bottom or bottom to top.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Time & Temp Bug” id=time-and-temp-bug]A general term for the graphic that contains the current time and temperature. This is typically near or part of the standard bug.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Toss Shot” id=toss-shot]A wide shot that includes two or more talent members in the frame, typically positioned in different but adjacent areas of the set and used as a transition between segments. Also known as a cross shot.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Touchscreen” id=touchscreen]The general term for a monitor, typically rather large, that is equipped with a touch sensitive surface. Often used for weather and traffic, the touchscreen may, depending on its configuration and software, allow talent to draw on the image shown on screen, add graphical symbols such as cold and warm fronts, swipe through two or more images or otherwise interact with the graphics, video and images shown on the screen.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Transition” id=transition]A general term for any animated effect that appears between two video sources. Transitions or wipes can range from simple fades to fully-animated 3D effects. Most transitions make use of the transparent alpha channel to create varying levels of transparency. More complex animations, typically those with 3D or intricate graphics, have one or more frames where the graphic covers the entire screen, allowing the jump cut between the two video sources to be “hidden.”[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Video Wall” id=video-wall]A general term for referring to a wall-like array of video panels. It may or may not be full wall height. Also known as video array.[/accordion-item]

[accordion-item title=”Weather Center” id=weather-center]A general term for the area of a set designed for weather reports. Some weather centers include functioning workstations where forecasters work. The proximity of the weather work area to the set is sometimes done to expedite the flow of information during urgent weather situations such as tornadoes or hurricanes.[/accordion-item]

[/accordion]

Sign up for NewscastStudio's weekly newsletter.Our weekly newsletter delivers the latest broadcast industry news to your inbox including new debuts, case studies, thought leadership and broadcast gear updates.