Sydney Video Press Arrangements



Special arrangements were made at Sydney Video at OTC in Paddington for the press to see the Apollo 11 surface operations as they unfolded, and to get photographs to distribute to the world.

Since Sydney Video was the only place where photos from a Slow Scan monitor were released (SSTV photos were taken by a GSFC PAO at Goldstone, but no press representatives were present, and there were no press people at Honeysuckle or Parkes during the EVA), these photos were widely seen around the world.

In charge of press co-ordination at Paddington was Ed Mason, Goddard Space Flight Center Public Affairs Head, who had come to Sydney for the mission.

Press photographers and reporters could see the NASA and RCA team processing and switching the TV on the other side of the glass window. As well two small monitors (with Western Electric 106 speakers on top) were set up on a table, and there was a small television receiver.

(Ian Mackenzie describes the scene in this interview.)

 

Sydney Video

The scene just outside the “Sydney Video” enclosure during the EVA.

Photo courtesy of the OTC’s Bob Goodman via John Sarkissian. Thanks to John for adding the names. Click the image for a larger version without the annotations.

John writes, “Barry [Gilmour] mentioned to me that when he arrived earlier that morning, he came with his 35mm camera as was expected of him. However, he found that the Mamiya cameras were already setup and he had no need to use his 35mm camera, so he left it on the table. You can see his camera sitting there, not being used.”

The photo was taken early in the EVA, before the camera was removed from the MESA. (Here’s a rough skewed image of the monitors.)

For another view looking to the right and through the window into the Sydney Video enclosure, see this photo. It was taken after the EVA had concluded and most of the press had left.

Can anyone name the other prople in this photo? Contact.


Sydney Video

Sydney Press photographer Barry Gilmour supplied this copy of the plans for the NASA Moonwalk Picture Pool.

All Sydney newspapers as well as other news organisations temporarily suspended their rivalry to get pictures to a waiting world. The plan reveals a carefully scripted operation.

With thanks to John Sarkissian who received this from Barry Gilmore in 2008.

(The expectation was that all cars would be at OTC by 3:00pm, but the early EVA moved the times forward.)

Click the image for a PDF file. Transcription below.

 

NASA MOONWALK PICTURE POOL

OPERATED BY AAP FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS

Pool Organiser and referee: Mr. G. Connolly
Tel: 293941 (office)
484669 (home)

Picture Pool participants are:

Sydney Sun/Sydney Morning Herald
Sydney Telegraph
Sydney Mirror
Australian
UPI (and Newsweek)
AAP
Melbourne Age
Melbourne Herald/Sun-Pic
AUP
Life
Keystone

The Pool will operate at the Mirror office in Kippax Street, third floor. Pool administration will be in the Sunday Mirror editorial office. Photographics will be in the Mirror darkroom.

All pictures to be attributed “NASA official photo” (“via The Sun” … “via AAP”… “via UPI” etc. maybe added if desired).

Photography

This will be controlled and supervised by Mr. Ed Mason of NASA at OTC Paddington, first floor, 361 Oxford St. Actual photography will be by Sydney Press photographers Mr. Smith and Mr. Gilmore*.

Mr. Smith will use NASA’S 70 mm Fairchild camera on a slow scan screen and Mr. Gilmore* a 35mm camera on a monitor.

After the first four or five vital shots have been taken the film from both cameras plus caption sheets will be given by Mr. Mason to a pool courier waiting on the spot. The courier will have a pass and a small diagram showing entry and exit into the area. The courier will dash downstairs to a waiting car and go directly to the Mirror office.

This first car will be provided by the Mirror and will have Mr. Neil Stewart acting as courier, in view of the urgency of these first few pictures. A Sun car will be the second courier and a Telegraph car the third. As the couriers deliver to the Mirror the couriers and cars return to OTC for further runs.

As the Moon Walk could last two hours or more the Fairchild camera packs should be returned to Mr. Mason as soon as they are processed at the Mirror so that they can be loaded again if necessary.

Two couriers should be in the NASA photographic centre at all times to ensure continuity. The second batch of film should leave OTC 15 minutes after the first Iot.

At the Mirror office the couriers will come up to the third floor and hand the material to Mr, Max Ross, in charge of the Mirror darkroom. Mr. Ross will organise processing and printing. He will bring each batch of 4-5 prints to Mr. Connolly in the Sunday Mirror editorial room.

Seven x five prints will be produced first, with priority to the wire services, AAP and UPI. After the 7 x 5 prints have been issued 10 x 8 will be processed.

Priority for distribution of prints will be:

AAP and UPI at the same time, then Mirror, Sun, Melbourne Herald, AUP at the same time, then Sydney Telegraph, SMH, Australian, Age, Life, Keystone.

While the negatives are being processed the brief captions supplied by Mr. Mason will be typed and copied. When Mr. Ross hands the batch of prints to Mr. Connolly the captions will be taped to the back of the prints with Sellotape. The prints then will be distributed.

Once the prints are in the special baskets labelled with Pool members’ names, the Pool responsibility end.

NO-ONE IS TO TOUCH OR INTERFERE WITH PRINTS OR NEGATIVES IN ANY WAY UNLESS AUTHORISED BY THE POOL ORGANISER.

The Mirror darkroom is out of bounds to any unauthorised person.
Print numbers are as follows:

 
7 x 5
10 x 8
AAP
2
2
UPI (and Newsweek)
2
2
Sun / SMH
-
2
Mirror
1
2
AUP
-
1
Melb Herald / Sun-Pic
1
1
Keystone (through UPI)
1
1
Telegraph
-
2
Age
1
1
Australian
-
1
Life
1
1
NASA
-
6


Public sale of prints is permitted by NASA.

The darkroom will be handled by the Mirror, plus a man each from SMH and Telegraph. Prints will be provided in batches of 4-5.

A three man committee will select the pictures for printing.

This selection will be done at the negative stage. Composition is: a newspaper representative and a representative each from AAP and UPI.

The darkroom will be out of bounds to all but unauthorised Pool personnel.

Mr. Max Ross of the Mirror and his deputy, Mr. Ray Mclnnes, will be in charge of operations there on behalf of the Pool.

Transmitters:

These are not the responsibility of the Pool. Each Pool member is to make his own arrangements for transmitter and line. Transmitters are to be installed in the cadet lecture room adjacent to the darkroom.

General:

Pool responsibility ends with placing of prints and captions in each basket.

Costs:

These will be shared among those taking prints from the Pool. Expected expenses will include: darkroom paper, chemicals, equipment etc., Rank Xerox copier, AAP, SMH and Telegraph and Mirror staff time, cars from each paper, electrical work at Mirror to cater for equipment installed for the Pool work.

Courier cars:

Three cars and couriers will be used, provided by the Mirror, SMH and Telegraph.

The Mirror car with photographer Neil Stewart will be at OTC from 11 am. Mr. Stewart to stay close by Mr. Mason, particularly during initial Moon Walk shots.

Telegraph and SMH cars on 11 am standby. All cars at OTC by 3pm.

-------

* should be “Gilmour”.


Sydney Video

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Public Affairs Head Ed Mason (left) presents a certificate of appreciation (like this one) to the OTC’s Bob Goodman.

Photo: Bob Goodman via John Sarkissian.



 

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