Sunday, April 06, 2003
David Bloom

Jeff Soyer at Alphecca has these comments about the loss of NBC reporter David Bloom to an embolism while with the 3rd Infantry in Iraq.

I've been disappointed with some of the war coverage, but I have to admit that Bloom's on the spot while on the move reporting was captivating. I had never found anything particularly special about his coverage of the White House, especially when compared to some who had previously filled that role. But his reporting from Iraq was genuine and important, if for nothing more than the sense it gave of life in an armored column.

His network's web presence, MSNBC has the following about how they did it in their story about Bloom's death.
Technology journals immediately picked up on the significance of Bloom's live, on-the-move reports, made possible in large part because of the foresight and ingenuity of Bloom himself.

"He was very involved in the whole process," said Stacy Brady, NBC's vice president of network news operations, who helped modify the armored vehicle that quickly acquired a sobriquet -- the "Bloommobile."

"Just from his reporting experience, he added in a lot of requirements or needs that he thought would be essential for this to work," she said.

Bloom and his cameraman mounted a gyrostabilized camera -- the kind that's mounted on helicopters -- to produce jiggle-free video even when the M-88 was bumping along at 50 mph or more. Then the sharper-than-videophone signal was sent via microwave to a converted Ford F-450 crew-cab truck, two to 10 miles farther back in the column. An antenna on the truck transmitted the signal in real-time from its own gyrostabilized platform to an overhead satellite, which relayed it to NBC.