"Round Table School": We will care about the concerns of netizens, but we will not cater to them

    A round table, a few plates of snacks, a light of incense, the familiar opening song rang out, and a chat game like "Night Around the Fire" began... Unconsciously, "Round Table Pie" has reached its sixth season .

    "The Round Table" Season 6 Poster

    Recalling that "Round Table School" was just launched in 2016, at that time "Qiangqiang Threesome" had not been discontinued. For many people who love to listen to Dou Wentao's chatting bureau, "Round Table School" is Dou Wentao's shallow test to conform to the trend of the Internet. At that time, there were more and more Internet programs, and many online synthesizers got rid of the traditional shackles and gave full play to their creativity. If "The Three Walks of Qiang Qiang" was a front-row position with sharp topics and time constraints, the "Round Table School" with four people at one table was slow. Relaxing, wider themed rear garden.

    Now that six years have passed, "The Threesome of Qiang Qiang" has been discontinued on September 12, 2017; the once surprising online variety show has either become the exhausted comprehensive N generation, or has been forgotten; on the contrary, "Round Table" Pie", 12 episodes per season, maintains a high level of output and interesting chats, and even the ratings are getting higher and higher. It is a "poetry and distance" that people can temporarily withdraw from their impetuous life.

    "Round Table School" producer Ling Hulie is an "Old Phoenix Man". From "The Three Walks" to "Round Table School", he accompanied Dou Wentao and the team all the way to the present. Linghulie recalled that in 2016, the Internet platform suddenly emerged, and programs of various types and durations can be watched at any time, while "The Threesome of Qiang Qiang" has always been a TV program, with 5,000 episodes broadcast one episode a day, "quasi-live" recording, every time The episodes were advertised at the beginning and end of the episode within half an hour. Everything was recorded and broadcast in the studio. Generally, there was no post-editing. Dou Wentao described it as "a mess."

    Although he has been chatting for 20 years in that simple set, Dou Wentao has not been hollowed out at all, but his condition is getting better and better. "From a certain point of view, on the one hand, "The Three Walks of Qiangqiang" urged him to study more, read books, and understand, and it actually enriched his experience in dealing with people. In the process of accumulation, Dou Wentao's strength is increasing day by day After contacting Youku, based on Linghulie's understanding of Dou Wentao, "there is no particular pressure to do one more talk show." He also felt that after so many years on Phoenix Satellite TV, "The Threesome of Qiang Qiang" has become A set, after discussing with Dou Wentao and the team, they decided to take this step first, to see if they could open a new door to touch the new world.

    The good-looking "Round Table School" is naturally inseparable from Dou Wentao's ability as a host. Linghulie said bluntly that Dou Wentao is the most important "leader" of this show, and the "author" himself. "Everyone in the team can fully feel Dou Wentao's control over the quality of this kind of show."

    Although the "Round Table School" only adds one guest compared to "The Three Walks", the difficulty is doubled. Linghulie explained that the three people sit together, and the triangular sitting method stabilizes the aura, and one more person is added. , "The aura dissipated at once." Second, when picking up guests, the chatting field and hot situation between guests and guests are all what the host needs to pay attention to in real time in the show. Dou Wentao's algorithm is that there are three lines between two or two of three people, and six lines between four people, but the difficulty of mediation is doubled. The two original guests are almost old friends, but when it comes to "The Round Table Party", the repetition of the guests is not so high, and Dou Wentao needs to rebalance.

    "Round Table School" is naturally inseparable from "Round Table".

    The first recording was in June 2016, in a teahouse in Shenzhen. Because the table was chosen inappropriately, Dou Wentao thought after watching the film that the four of them seemed a little alienated and should be gathered together to make them more intimate, so these two episodes were scrapped. The small round table was determined after buying four or five pieces, from the initial diameter of 120cm to 110cm, and finally decided to use a round table with a diameter of 80cm. "In the eyes of others, what is the relationship between 10 cm and 20 cm? But in the show, it is really related." In a four-person chat situation, the intimacy of the four people represents the audience and the show. of intimacy.

    Dou Wentao emphasized that all success comes from details. After the table was set, he also visited the door and asked Lu Le, a well-respected photographer and director in the film industry for advice. After he described the lighting effects he wanted to Lu Le, Lu Le brought his team and Dou Wentao together. After running around and experimenting with several effects, the tone of the picture was set, and between seasons, the lighting engineer was constantly trying to fine-tune the details of the face lighting.

    Even the air-conditioning on the scene, Dou Wentao has repeatedly considered: should the air-conditioning blow directly on the guests? Will it be colder if it blows? The smoke in the incense burner, will it sway a little bit by the wind? If the wind does not blow on the guests, will they feel hot? What to put in the fruit bowl on the table?

    Linghulie said that if the production team had a meeting, it would start at least five hours, and Dou Wentao would participate in the repeated discussions on every detail. At times, the audience may appear to be just a fixed shot of the shot, but behind the scenes, everyone has tried many times between moving and still.

    Dou Wentao has always emphasized to the production team that first of all, don't think of yourself as a producer or director, and you must first regard yourself as an audience -- what do you think of this guest? What do you think about this option? How do you see the logic in the topic selection, these processes, the direction of these issues, these scenarios, and these pictures?

    "Are small tomatoes or peanuts on the table, and a small stick of incense sticks. All these details are to make the chatting guests feel comfortable." Linghu Lie sighed, Dou Wentao is an absolute control of details, and he always He was called "Mr. Almost" by Dou Wentao.

    In one of the episodes of "Round Table School", Dou Wentao once said that the reason why he was able to make the show actually depends on the protection of many people. For example, some producers will help deal with and deal with some problems. Linghu Lie said that this is Dou Wentao being too self-effacing, and no one can compare to Dou Wentao himself in terms of his dedication to the show. He has calculated that the ratio of Dou Wentao's time for each program to the time spent on the film is far more than 100:1. From the outside world, he is seen as a host, but in fact, his longest working hours are spent on film editing. Sometimes at two or three in the morning, Dou Wentao still sent comments in the work group, and after 7 in the morning, he replied to the message in the group again, often in this state.

    Although there have been many interview and chat programs in the past two years, "Round Table School" has not changed. Zheng Yanfei, producer of Youku Culture Channel, said, "I don't want "Round Table School" to do subversive innovations, for example, So far, I haven't moved "Round Table Pie" to do it outdoors. Just like an old restaurant that has been in business for decades, old customers will still come, and new customers can also taste the authentic old taste."

    Linghulie felt that if he insisted on doing something right, it would be "idealization".

    "Whether the show is good or not is a matter of benevolent people seeing benevolent and wise people seeing wisdom. We can only say that our show is more idealistic. First of all, it is very important to have a host like Dou Wentao. After all the guests sit at this table, he It can make everyone feel relatively relaxed and comfortable. This ability is really not available to everyone; coupled with his dedication to content, he is an extremely serious and professional person. Second, I think the show team needs to be sincere For so many years, we have never looked at problems from the top of netizens, we have always looked side by side with netizens, what should we think about this matter, and do this with the most sincere service attitude."

    "Round Table School" host Dou Wentao


    "Learn to be restrained and find freedom"

    The Paper : How to set and select topics for each issue? Will you pay attention to some hot issues of young people, or will you bring out what you want to talk about first?

    Linghu column : This is a big problem. Take "The Three Walks" as an example, because it is a relatively short program, within 27 minutes, you can chat about an event, and then "run away from the topic", the time is still manageable. But The Round Table is now starting to enter into a topic, not an event.

    When the "Round Table School" started, we wanted to expand from the habitual way of thinking and do what we are most familiar with. For example, the first episode was about mentoring and apprenticeship, talking about some of the debates at that time, and then extending from this news topic. , say a social phenomenon.

    In the early years, when I transitioned from "The Three Walks of Qiang Qiang", I felt that everyone was more willing to listen to the chat between some acquaintances, especially the chatting of the old brothers. But in the past two years, we feel that the current audience also wants to gain some new knowledge, such as life science, geography, and astronomy. Of course, the transformation is a gradual process, not just a click from old friends chatting to imparting knowledge, we are also trying, and we don't know which direction is absolutely correct or absolutely incorrect.

    Although it is said that netizens are young netizens, we think that old netizens are also very important, and young netizens can also attract friends. We are also in the process of learning. How to choose the topic and how to select the guests is a very complicated process.

    Then look at the guests, whether there are friends who happen to be our friends, if not, then we have to make a list. Every season, we have to make a list of hundreds of guests, depending on the time of others. In fact, "Round Table School" does not have a particularly precise and streamlined process for finding topics and guests.

    aesthetic theme

    The Paper : With so many topics, what are your reasons for screening?

    Linghu Lie : Although some topics have a lot of attention, they are not easy to talk about. We are also afraid of public opinion when we are doing shows. We need to affirm our work, but we are also afraid of causing particularly big disputes. It will be difficult to clean up in the end. People have misled some social topics, or the most appropriate guests have not been found in this field.

    The Paper : Is it difficult to control the sensitivity of the topic and the scale of the conversation?

    Linghu Lie : Everyone who does a show will have to balance the scale, but this is not the most important issue for us who do the show. Isn't there a platform and an audit department? As content creators, let's not close our doors first, unless it is some extremely extreme things, some incomprehensible problems. Let's move forward first, and when we reach a certain point, we will listen to the opinions of all parties, and then make corrections. Brother Tao has a saying in the show, "If you learn restraint, you will find freedom."

    In the early stage of topic selection, we are not very likely to do some topics that may be controversial in public opinion. Individuals can understand that it is not easy to touch, and we generally do not do it. Generally speaking, we don't lock ourselves in a relatively cramped environment to think about problems in the first place.

    The Paper : How to balance the trending topics that attract young netizens and the cultural topics that old audiences like?

    Linghulie : Brother Tao is actually a very open person. He often said in private that he is not so persistent about topics and guests, and that old audiences do not mean that they love culture, and young people do not mean that they do not love culture.

    I think "The Round Table Party" has done a good job on this issue. It's hard to say whether you are young or not. I'm in my forties, I don't think I'm old, and I don't think that young netizens refer to those in their teens or twenties. In today's society, the range of young people is still very wide. When we talk about topics, we never say which topics are liked by teenage children and which ones are liked by 20-35 year olds. We will look at the issues that people are more concerned about on the Internet. At the same time, even if we know what netizens care about, we cannot immediately cater to the topics they particularly want to hear. We will certainly care about their concerns, but we will not cater to them. Even though it is possible to say something that some people don't like to hear, we are sincere, because we feel that if everyone cares about this issue, we should do some homework to do some sharing.

    sleep theme

    Do not "set homework" for guests

    The Paper : Is there no agenda setting at all?

    Linghu Lie : Anyway, "Round Table School" did not give the guests the slightest reminder in advance. At least the four people at the table were sincere. They never sent a message to say, Mr. Zhang, you are here to talk about these points, Mr. Wang You haven't been to us for a pair of topics, and we never tell the guests what points should be discussed. Before the recording, Brother Tao most often said to the guests: Today's so-called topic is just an introduction, and there is no pre-set theme. Don't be kidnapped by the so-called topic, you can just follow your feelings and say whatever you are interested in.

    We didn't give a guest homework ahead of time, which hasn't happened in six seasons. This shows that Dou Wentao's business ability is really strong, and it can't be called control. I think it is a strong adhesion ability. His always-on view is that chatting should be diverted from the topic.

    His cohesiveness in the middle allows everyone to walk in a relatively relaxed and aimless chat field. From a certain perspective, this ability is still related to his own homework and his usual conscious accumulation.

    For example, he once did another show, did an interview, and a week before this episode, he listened to all the CDs of the guests, read all the books he wrote, or people wrote his books, All I have to do is call him and listen to the background music, all the songs of that guest. So, don't look at the words that are so hard on the court. It is possible that he did his homework for a week for these words. Each episode of our material may reach hundreds of pages, and he reads it at home, sometimes takes notes, and then brings it to the scene. He told me that this is a belief, and all the information is in his head, but chatting is natural, it is good to be unprepared, but the main thing is not to be afraid of retribution. What he asked us was to finalize the guests 15 days in advance, prepare all the materials 10 days in advance, and he wanted to digest all the content of this episode within these 10 days.

    The Paper : When talking about different fields, such as quantum mechanics, what are the general requirements for data preparation?

    Linghu Lie : This may be a problem that every host has to face, but I think it is mainly because Wen Tao is a very curious person in his life. The sixth season involves astronomy, archaeology, and physics. , he always read these books. One of Wen Tao is not pretending, if he doesn't understand, he doesn't understand; the other is pretending, and he pretends not to understand. He said that if the host didn't understand, he wouldn't even ask; if the host knew everything, what would the guests do?

    One of his main tasks is to make these three guests comfortable, and this habit has been incorporated into his blood. As for whether it is necessary to express his profound views or precise insights into quantum mechanics in this matter, he does not need to. The quantum mechanics that everyone cares about in society is some states in this field, not really talking about scientific formulas.

    This problem will be more obvious in the later editing, that is, how deep and shallow it is, how to grasp the problem of how the audience feels, and the depth of the field.

    From the early stages of "The Threesome of Qiang Qiang" to the "Round Table School" to the present, the time is getting longer and longer. "The Three Walks of Qiang Qiang" is a live broadcast as much as possible, with a 27-minute program and a 30-minute video. At the very beginning of "Round Table Pie", the 60-minute program may have been recorded in 90 minutes. But now, we may be involved in some relatively professional fields. We define it as a relatively niche field. We must take into account the habits of the audience. If it is too vertical and too niche, we don’t understand it ourselves, so don’t Let more netizens not understand, we will consider cutting some of the more in-depth discussions. What's more, now sometimes the program can be recorded for about two and a half hours.

    Brother Tao often said that the audience today is much smarter than us. For example, in this issue of Astronomy, Mr. Zhu Jin and Mr. Deng Licai, Mr. Deng is our old friend, and he was also a guest in "Qianqiang Xingtianxia" before. Everyone likes Mr. Deng very much, and we think that it seems that many people Everyone loves astronomy.

    For example, the question of "how are gravitational waves discovered?" I think this is too vertical and should be cut off, otherwise everyone will find it boring. At this time, it can only be voted by everyone in the group, so Brother Tao Let's call a group "Jury of Films". It is impossible for us to find a physicist to say, whether you have read this content too deeply, should you say it, these are all very individual perceptions. We don't do anything self-righteous, just try to present to the audience what we think is more interesting. As for whether the audience likes it or not, there must be more or less feedback, and then we will understand whether these attempts are possible.

    astronomical themes

    Maybe every comment

    The Paper : Do you attach great importance to barrage comments or online discussions?

    Linghu column : very seriously. I even think, does Brother Tao read every bullet screen comment and Douban short comment? The staff may not be as careful as him, and he often posts in our group - you see that some netizens mentioned this, do you think it makes sense? We said at the beginning why I didn't see this article, we have already turned hundreds of pages and we all thought you were too hard...

    There is also an extra part of this year's Spring Festival. A netizen said that the mouth shape and voice differ by two or three frames. He (Dou Wentao) said that I read it, and it seems to be true. We checked for several days. It was the problem of the PAD and mobile phones, not the film. It was difficult to see with the naked eye. After Brother Tao said it, we changed it overnight. He paid too much attention to netizens on this matter, and he would go through almost everything the netizens said in his mind.

    The Paper : Regarding the issue of "Round Table School" inviting celebrities, there have been discussions before. Some viewers think that the tonality of celebrities and "Round Table School" does not match, and they can't say anything. It's a waste of time. Have you ever thought about it?

    Zheng Yanfei : This was more obvious in the fourth season, and there were many hot comments at that time. Brother Tao pointed us that we can invite stars, but we must be very restrained. In fact, everyone can see that in the past six seasons, the stars who can be named are firstly excellent, and secondly, to what extent they can say, we are also digging three feet into the ground. It cannot be said that it is a problem of level. Singing is completely different. We also have very wonderful chapters, for example, Jiang Wen's issue is very good.

    When choosing a guest, we must first be suitable. We have also done some internal reviews, and we have to restrain ourselves when we find that a star comes. We should not record so many episodes at once, choose a suitable topic, or we must repeatedly consider whether this star can come or not. , do not easily go to the next conclusion. Of course, on the other hand, the presence of celebrities will definitely be of great benefit. It will help us attract new people and let more people see it. This is a mission of making cultural content. We are definitely not a program that is chasing traffic, but we can’t ignore traffic completely, just like we have placed advertisements quite moderately, but without advertisements, there will be no programs, so the key is the proportion, proportion and selection.

    "The Round Table Party" has never been a celebrity interview or an announcement program. We will be very cautious in the future, and we will make an evaluation first and then make a judgment. But how to put it, celebrities are also a kind of social identity, and it is understandable for guests to pay attention to this field. Please or not is not a matter of principle, whether the chatting effect is good or not, sometimes it may be a matter of luck.

    talk show theme

    It is a new idea to find some friends in the professional field

    The Paper : Has the program team encountered situations where they don’t know how to continue, how to progress, and how to find new topics? It is very difficult for a talk show to continue to attract people with a pattern.

    Linghu Lie : Our biggest confusion was at the beginning of the first two seasons, when everyone was thinking about whether to get together with old friends, or whether to invite more new guests to come in and provide new knowledge. From last year to this year, (we) will be hesitant on this issue, and this is the issue that is finally discussed and concluded.

    In the end, I found that netizens also hope to have some new friends, especially friends from some professional fields, and tell you about some new fields that may not be so often paid attention to.

    Zheng Yanfei : For example, as we mentioned just now, taking this direction of knowledge science also benefited from the two big hits of Mr. Yin Ye we made last year. We were also inspired by this and opened up a new road. We may think that it is a bit too much to talk about humanities and social sciences, but Yin Ye found that it was particularly good in these two episodes, and it shined. This is a new round of small-step innovation iterations for us, opening up the circle of science popularization.

    The Paper : Now that everyone listens to podcasts, how can they differentiate themselves from audio content products like podcasts, and what are the advantages?

    Linghu Lie : We also think about ourselves, so every detail is dead. The video is not a TV series, and you are not a variety show. How can every audience feel their kindness and sincerity from the state of the guests on this screen, and enjoy the four of them chatting around the fireplace at night. a feeling of?

    Whether it is in terms of form or the mood of post-editing, only the atmosphere can never be replaced. How do gravitational waves come about? You may understand it with the audio, I just learned a knowledge point, but if you are in "Round Table School", you will see Mr. Deng Licai and Mr. Zhu Jin explain in such vivid language, as well as movements and body language. , you will feel comfortable after listening to them, and at the same time you will feel intimacy and sincerity.

    In fact, for a program that can implement personal style and attention to every detail in front of and behind the stage, differentiation is inevitable, just like you can't find two identical people, his personal creation and expression are differentiated root cause.

    Zheng Yanfei : With the increasing topic density and content information of "Round Table School", we have a lot of supplementary information, such as some materials, or some pictures will be inserted. It is very useful and serves your main program. "The Round Table Party" is a program with a very high long-tail effect. Everyone will watch it repeatedly. We have such a follow-up in the backstage and found that "The Round Table Party" will not go to the sixth season. No one cares about the previous seasons. .


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