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Cost of editing

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Timothy CervinskyCost of editing
by on Aug 17, 2016 at 5:03:26 pm

Let me preface this with I'm not an editor. I do not get paid to edit. My job title is Information Technology Technician. I work for a small state run university.

So recently I was tasked with editing some video for one of our academics. It consisted of very poorly shot video from two different cameras combined with slides from a Power Point. I was not present at the shoot or consulted about the presentation in any way. Upon my first (and every) review of the media I told them there is just not enough good material here to produce anything of any quality and I certainly wouldn't want to show it to anyone.

Luckily for them I can not charge for the time I spent, so everything I did was done for free. It's a nearly three hour video of three speakers giving their presentations in one of our classrooms. The lighting was terrible and the camera operators were...well, students. Possibly not even students from our media production courses (at least I hope not).

Anyway, when I turn in this piece of crap to them I want to have an idea of what a company that edits video would have charged for a project such as this. Again, three hours of video from two cameras, lost audio/poor audio, a few dozen images from a Power Point presentation, and some lower thirds thrown in for good measure.

Your thoughts?


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Nick GriffinRe: Cost of editing
by on Aug 17, 2016 at 5:34:54 pm

Hard to imagine that just going through and organizing the material would take less than 10 to 12 hours, probably more unless all you did was a cursory review of what you'd been given. As to hourly rate: pick a number. There are no doubt some on this site who will edit for $40 to $50 per hour and many others whose work is priced by the day, say $1,000 to (I dunno) $5,000 or more. As a beginner, who presumably doesn't own the equipment you're using, you're probably closer to the $40 to $50/hour range. The key is to be honest with what your capabilities are versus the expectations of who you are doing the work for.

As to the
[Timothy Cervinsky] "piece of crap":
As long as you are diplomatic and not at all confrontational it's a good idea to point out the limitations of what you've been given. Better still if you can offer a solution like, "Let me help by re-shooting just the main speaker(s) and inter-mixing it with any existing wide shots to produce a better product." Also consider re-creating their PowerPoint slides. It's amazing what many people try to cram into a single slide and expect anyone to read it or have any impact. Rule of thumb is no more than 7 words per line and no more than 7 lines of text per slide.


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Timothy CervinskyRe: Cost of editing
by on Aug 17, 2016 at 7:00:21 pm

Thanks Nick. That's just the kind of answer I was looking for. I understand that markets are different all over the world and with the capabilities the internet has opened I figured there would be a wide range of acceptable answers.

Unfortunately none of this can be re-shot. I have already politely explained some of the media's short comings, but I don't think they will fully understand until we get to sit down together to review the rough edit later this week.

Next time I will try not to be taking my vacation on the day of the shoot. And I would estimate I do have about 15-20 hours into it. Only thing left to do is add a credit roll (without my name in it- lol )


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Mark SuszkoRe: Cost of editing
by on Aug 17, 2016 at 9:55:07 pm

Allan Smithee is the standard name you put in the credits for people who don't want their real names used. And... credit rolls? For something like this? They need to get over themselves:-) Base your estimate on hours, and because this is a relatively simple kind of job, go with fifty an hour. Though low, it still will multiply out to a "scary" number. Be careful what rate you attach to these jobs, because management is likely to seize upon it as some kind of standard and weld you to it for eternity.


The point of the scary number though, whatever it is, should be to show how, with just a little more cooperation and advance work, you can knock the time and money spent WAYYYY down.


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Nick GriffinRe: Cost of editing
by on Aug 18, 2016 at 12:29:29 pm

[Mark Suszko] "Allan Smithee is the standard name you put in the credits for people who don't want their real names used."

Funny. We list Norm D. Plume as our Creative Director. (Distorted French for pen name.)


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Bruce JohnsonRe: Cost of editing
by on Aug 19, 2016 at 12:47:41 am

We usually multiply the hours of footage by 3 or 4 (answer would be 9 or 12). Then that larger number of hours we multiply by $85-$125. Variables are based on the length and extent of post production notes and include the addition of bumpers or music beds, intro or no intro, extensive effects and text overlays.
I am actually wondering about etiquette for adding our company logo, company intro or company name throughout videos we edit for our corporate clients. My gut says to not do it; just add a editing credit on the credit roll. Only most of these videos are for their website video content or for students to watch online for school credits. I will do a legitimate post in the appropriate forum but just thought I would ask.

Bruce Johnson
A.V. Rental Services, inc.
4039 Comly Street
Philadelphia, PA 19135
http://www.AudioVisualRenting.com
bruce@audiovisualrenting.com

Bruce Johnson
A.V. Rental Services, inc.
4039 Comly Street
Philadelphia, PA 19135
http://www.AudioVisualRenting.com
bruce@audiovisualrenting.com


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Mark SuszkoRe: Cost of editing
by on Aug 19, 2016 at 2:24:25 am

Never add your prodco credits to a client's work without their express permission and insistence. My experience has been that most of the time, the client wants the prodco info kept secret.


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Victoria SpellingRe: Cost of editing
by on Sep 8, 2016 at 11:30:51 am

Would like to know more about prodco credits! Please, explain! Thank you!


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