Over a year ago, an article was written in response to some very bad journalism and blogging about Final Cut Pro X. It never got published, but in the wake of a similar article surfacing last week, we thought we would dig it out. It was written in October 2014 and has been very slightly updated to reflect the new Apple hardware. Enjoy!
How to write the ultimate Final Cut Pro X article
As time goes on since FCPX’s release, no doubt every website, publication or newsletter that has a passing reference to video will post at some time their piece on FCPX. Journalists and bloggers' time is short, so we thought we would put together a handy guide on how to hack together the best Final Cut Pro X article you can.
Let's face it, everybody pinches work without doing proper research, so why not have it all in one place so that most of the hard graft has been done for you? This will free up time so you can think of a great click inducing headline for your article that will have people flocking to your site and hitting up those mature dating ads. (Doesn't everybody see those?)
In a headline, always pose a question such as: Does anybody use Final Cut Pro X? You will most certainly get extra clicks if you use the words 'iMovie Pro' or 'Professional' in the title. Killed, abandoned, not ready, baby and bathwater are all good too.
Make sure you start off by mentioning the debut of FCPX at the SuperMeet in Las Vegas. It is important to stress here that the new version is exactly that, new. It looks totally different to the old version. Phrases like 'designed from the ground up' or 'new editing paradigm' always go down well. You must mention that removing the Viewer from the editing screen will confuse every editor who has used an NLE before. You need two screens to edit right?
You must stress that Apple has made a huge mistake in killing off the old Final Cut. It's not progress or forward thinking or designing a framework for the future, it's huge mistake and they will never recover. If it wasn't for the iPhone, they would be out of business. When referring to Apple in your piece, never say Apple after the first mention. 'Somebody in Cupertino' sounds like you know somebody on the campus who has divulged never heard before details.
Stress the low price of X. Chuck in some names like Walter Murch who used FCP7 on Cold Mountain and suggest that they are never going to trust an app that costs so little. The more feature films that used FCP7 you can mention, the better, nobody is using FCPX professionally so this is a great little paragraph that you can use again and again.
If you need a little multimedia here to jazz up your article, why not embed the video that the Conan O'Brien editors made when FCPX was released? All of them put a huge amount of time in learning the app, so they are a great 'sample' of a professional editor's take on the NLE. Don't be tempted to put the follow up video in though.
When it comes to quoting editors for your article, always make sure that they know what they are talking about. If they have to make large monthly repayments on loans for other non linear edit systems, or they constantly write or blog about another NLE, then they must have a good grip on the industry.
There are always a few very vocal 'celebrity editors' who will be more than happy to give you their opinions. You might even find some who hate FCPX so much they have never even opened up the app. Perfect! But followers are followers right? and you want these guys to spam your definitive piece once it gets published to get that hit count up and Adsense ticking over. Pick the ones who retweet every bad piece of news they can find about FCPX.
Updates, updates. A line that consistently works here is that Apple left out so many pro features, they are rushing to add them all back in again. Mention that there have been many updates, but they still haven't got the pro features that pros require since FCPX was released over four years ago.
If you need to talk about features that are there, pick the Magnetic Timeline. Everybody hates it. Trackless based editing - you don't need to say much as it even sounds stupid! If you want to come across as if you have tried editing on FCPX, then make up a joke about sequences now being called projects and projects now being called events. Always produces a chuckle in the confusion.
A killer point to make is that there is a huge Final Cut Pro X ecosystem that has been set up to do the tasks that FCPX won't do. There hasn't been a week gone by without an 'Xified' app being released. Lack of OMF support just proves the point.
No doubt you will want to put some statistics into the article. There are two golden rules in doing so.
Use every hard statistic you can with reference to Apple and the iPhone. Lines like "With Apple selling 500,000 phones a day, why should they care about FCPX?" always work. The bigger the number the better, it looks better, reads better. Although you can’t say that Apple has abandoned the pro market with the new Mac Pro, you can say it is too expensive. Good grief, no hard working editor is ever going to spend that amount of money on a tool they use every day!
Don’t forget the Mac Pro’s lack of connectivity and inability for the user to upgrade. Look at the fuss the iMac created when they dropped the floppy drive!
When talking about FCPX though, do NOT mention numbers, but use generalisations that nobody will be able to prove you wrong about. Here are a few examples:
When FCPX was released, all FCP7 editors moved to Avid
When FCPX was released, all FCP7 editors moved to Adobe.
When FCPX was released, all FCP7 editors dumped FCP7.
Nobody in this industry has this information so you are free to make your own statement, be as punchy as you like as nobody will pull you up for being incorrect.
It's time to finish with a bang and we have saved the best for last. You have at your hands a vast array of quotations from FCP guru Larry Jordan (That is his official name on his driving licence) He has said FCPX isn't ready for professional use, he has said it is ready for professional use, he has said it might be ready for professional use. Google him, you will be sure to find a sentence from the great master that can be taken out of context to prove any point.
Wrap that all up with an out of date screenshot and of course that clickbait headline and you are on to a winner.
Or maybe not.
So there you go, hopefully this tongue-in-cheek piece might stop the flow of below par FCPX articles being published. Then again as clickbait headlines go, this is probably as guilty!