Professional Courtesy A Cautionary Tale - Part 2

05-25-2014 01:01 PM

In part 1 I described the start of what should have been a simple handover to the US International Re-Versioning Mixer of a voiceover session that I had recorded here in the UK, and looked at Aiton’s First Law of Post Production - “Don’t Pass Sh##t On”.
Aiton’s Second Law of Post Production - “If something has gone awry, talk the problem through on the phone privately - email is very clumsy”

For some reason, the US International Mixer wasn’t answering his phone. He kept sending public emails to all that “he was under the impression that I would provide all recorded materials not just the selected takes”. This did not make me look very competent to the production team, despite me having done nothing wrong, as it implied that the error was indeed mine. Humph!
As an aside, one boringly quiet day when I worked at Molinare in Soho, I was lurking in VT transfer trying to learn something about the new VT decks that were appearing, when there was a problem with a transfer. A production mixed by an outside dubbing mixer being transferred to a Transmission tape was peaking at PPM 7. I discreetly rang him and asked him if he would like it if I layed off that section of the mix into an AMS Audiofile and controled those peaks a bit, or would he rather I sent the tape back discreetly. He chose the former and his dignity and our friendship was cemented, without a dent in a single production manager.
Aiton’s Third Law of Post Production – “do not point fingers – be discreet – honour amongst thieves”

Sending the US International mixer screenshots of the session showing all takes present in he clip list was having no effect. I wondered if the US Mix session had had the non-timeline clips stripped out before it was passed onto the international mix session? The international mixer seemed to refuse to follow any initiative (like download my session and check or re-import my session), it seemed very much to be a case of spoiled brat “I want it and I want it in my timeline now, and it’s your fault”.
Its funny that a polite follow up from me the next day with offers of how to sort the problem out and how we could avoid any further issues was met with another email to all the production staff with “I have figured it out over here. All of the ALTs are in the handles of the selected takes”. Er - no, you have blatantly NOT figured it out and are you are again demonstrating that you are rude and interested in one-upmanship alone.
Aiton’s Fourth Law Of Post Production - “do not sh##t on the doorstep”

So if you are reading this, “Mr US International Version Mixer” – you were highly discourteous and bit the helpful hand that feeds you. Your stems that you produce from this mix will be very highly scrutinized for faults or incorrect dips by others now, who are unfortunately aware of how you behave. You have not made a raft of friends through your lack of courtesy. It is a small industry and Aiton’s Fourth law applies. A cautionary tale indeed.