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Media Coverage
Old 08-02-2007, 05:17 PM   #1
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Media Coverage

Seems to me, that the Media can't wait to focus on a tragic situation (such as Minnesota bridge collapse.) Without demanding and pointing the finger at potential causes, neglect, shortcomings of emergency help. No one has had time, to evaluate the causes but, the Media want's an answer.

I also am appalled, at the questions some reporters ask: What type of debris, did you find in the water? How soon, do you expect to have this damage cleaned up? (Maybe, that's legit.) Do you, consider yourself, a Hero?
Why, haven't these cars been pulled out of the river? (In spite of numerous statements, as to the reasons why.)

It is a horrible situation and I feel tremendous sorrow, for anyone having to endure it!! But, don't reporters have common sense? One, even asked , What, was an "eddy." Did he/she make it thru third grade?

Guess, I'm just an old grouch. But, their job is to report the news, not embelish the facts with asanine question.
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Old 08-02-2007, 05:55 PM   #2
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reporters could use their own common sense or imagination to tell the tale but the reporter's job is to get quotes from the sources, to be as objective as they can muster and to let the story tell itself. sure a reporter could answer his/her own dumb questions but then you wouldn't have anything to quote.

as to the definition of an eddy, i'd imagine many people not familiar with coastal and inland navigation wouldn't have much use for the term. to report properly on any subject a reporter has to gather as much info as possible and become instant temporary experts on subjects in which they might never have studied, whether that is navigation, weather, medicine, engineering, whatever.

reporters try to ask open, rather than closed questions to allow the interviewee to answer as much as possible in his/her own words and with as much elaboration as possible. so as to questions like "what type of debris," this simply might have been a polite way of asking if any floating body parts had been found.
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Old 08-02-2007, 06:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundance Kid View Post
Guess, I'm just an old grouch. But, their job is to report the news, not embelish the facts with asanine question.
That may be their job as described in brochures for journalism schools. But their job when they finally get a job is to draw audiences in a very competitive environment. Nothing else matters, especially truth or good taste or sensitivity.

Ha
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Old 08-02-2007, 10:14 PM   #4
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What type debris would be expected, if 8 lanes of a highway fell into a river?
Potted palms?

Guess I count too much on truth, good taste and sensitivity and less sensationalism, for the sake of media ratings.

Sorry, that's just me!!
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Old 08-03-2007, 10:27 AM   #5
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do you find the beginning of news articles or the latter parts of them to be more sensational? would it be helpful to the reader if the reporter eased into a story like you might help yourself into a hot bath with eddies?

ha is sort of correct in that a reporter seeks to draw in their audiance, but more correct would be to say that a reporter writes with an audiance in mind just as any good communicator should during a presentation.

how often do you get beyond the first few graphs of all the news articles you read?

the danger, of course, of "if it bleeds it leads" is that when you put all the gory bits in the first few graphs, well, i suppose it might read as sensational. the option is burying what is important later in the story where it likely will not be read.

so i suspect that what might be perceived as sensationalism is simply a matter of prioritizing importance.
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Old 08-03-2007, 11:48 AM   #6
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I'm sorry, I raised the question!
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Old 08-03-2007, 03:47 PM   #7
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... the Media want's an answer.
And thank God for it. I am sick and tired of people
bashing the media. In my opinion, they are some
of the true heroes. If it were not for the media, Richard
Nixon and Alberto Gonzales, among others, would never
have been held accountable for their crimes (to the extent
that they have been).

The pay is lousy, unless you are one of the very few high
profile people and/or have written a successful book.

And the work is very dangerous. Reporters In Iraq have a
death rate that is unprecendented. That's right, people like
John Burns are risking their life so that you and I do not have
to take the word of c*nts like Don Rumsfeld about what is
REALLY happening in Iraq. They are every bit as much heroes
as the military who serve there.
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Old 08-03-2007, 05:42 PM   #8
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There's something to be said for covering it for a while, but I don't understand the non-stop coverage. It makes you wonder what else is going on or what you missed because the media get stuck on a topic for a while.

Slide shows? CNN or one of the other major news outlets (perhaps all) had a slideshow of the bridge collapse (and its fallout, etc.). When I think of slide shows, I think happy. I'm sure it wasn't a happy slideshow, but then again I don't how it was because I couldn't bring myself to watch it.

I like following all news. TV news is horrible. No variety.
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Old 08-03-2007, 10:14 PM   #9
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It was interesting to listen to the NTSB chair talk to the press today on NPR with their leading questions.

Here's a recap.

He hammered the press saying he was there to report facts. They kept asking for non-factual judgments or answers that he didn't have.

Specifically the end of the article, where he says:

Quote:
Finally, Rosenker says that there are many things that could have caused the southern part of the bridge to fall in a different way than the rest of the bridge. But he refused to name them, because he says he doesn't want those scenarios to wind up in the next day's headlines.
-CC
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Old 08-03-2007, 10:30 PM   #10
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I think a major part of the issue here is the 24 hour news cycle. Years ago, you got the majority of your news from the newspaper or the radio. With the advent of network news and now the cable newsers, there's an awful lot of time and space to be filled. Admittedly, some of the questions are insensitive, but the reporters for the most part are really trying to get the details for the viewer on a very short turn around. I wonder if some of these pieces are edited at all.

Glad my remote has an "off" button.
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Old 08-04-2007, 03:42 AM   #11
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CNN and Fox are just terrible about latching on to a single story and following it all day. At this point, there is about 60 seconds of worthwhile hard information to report on the bridge collapse story. The rest has been baseless conjecture and gratuitous footage ("hey, keep running that footage on the Tacoma Narrows bridge collapse. That's a real eye-catcher! Cool! Sure, it is an entirely different type of bridge, and it failed from an entirely different cause, and it therefore has nothing to do with the collapse of the bridge in Minneapolis--but the footage is very catchy!"). If it weren't this story it would be 24/7 coverage of the Natalie Holloway kidnapping in Aruba, or a car chase in Oregon, or some guy dangling from a scaffold in Detroit.
And, if there's no eye-candy or tragedy dominating things, then it's talk of Brittany's latest meltdown.
All of this crowds out important information that could be presented. How about a 20 minute piece on infrastructure deficiencies in the US? What has happened to the "no earmarks" promise from the new congressional leaders? What is really IN some of the bills being passed? A deeper analysis of how things are going in Iraq (not today's body count, but some well researched info on the vector of some important indicators).
For some reason, the folks where I w*rk feel a need to have something on the TV in the background all the time, so there's no getting away from this--at least when I'm working.
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Old 08-04-2007, 10:43 AM   #12
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The bridge collapse coverage is pretty much the same as the Paris Hilton coverage. People like to see sex and violence. A bridge collapsing is a lot like the big explosions in shoot-em-up movies. With the bridge, however, the media can more easily pretend it's real journalism.
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Old 08-04-2007, 11:53 AM   #13
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these are the same people who - when it rains - stand outside and say, "jim, sure is raining over here..." then sally pops up in another neighborhood and says, "yup it sure is raining over here too...look, the water is pouring down the street"

i think the cable news people are just trying to catch you between channel changes, so they feel ok w/ repeating whatever they say over and over again...which i'm ok w/ since i change channels a lot - i know if i sit tight they will repeat the important chunks, then i move on!

i think the problem w/ the nonstop coverage is the lack of the reporters ability to vet information - which i think they are sort of aware of...like with the miners that were stuck a while back, anderson cooper was talking to anyone he could get a hold of...and someone came around and said, "i heard this or i heard that" and that was going on live camera...i thought that was irresponsible...

or when they sit on camera and conjecture about why or what happened until they can get more information - that's a complete waste of everyone's time...
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Old 08-04-2007, 03:27 PM   #14
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while i also would appreciate more in depth news magazine type stories on issues that matter, just as a reminder of the power of our own perception: if you keep changing channels from one news station to the next and if you watch the news day after day at noon and then at 5 & then at 6:30 and then at 11 pm, do not complain about the media for inundating you with the same story over and over and over again. it is their job to inform whoever turns to them at that time. are "they" really reporting on the same thing too much or is it simply that you are watching too much television?

having just gotten back from 10 days in the sticks of tennessee with no wifi and with our only two televisions commandeered by the sponge bob square pants brigade, gotta tell ya, i didn't miss a thing. meanwhile, back in civilization, i'm on the computer & in front of the tv less than before i left.

now put down that remote and slowly back away from that television set with your hands in the air. we've got you surrounded. everything's going to be ok.
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Old 08-04-2007, 04:09 PM   #15
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When we were in Colorado last month, there was a wreck on the south bound lane of C470. A pickup hit another towing a trailer and both rolled. Now, we were going north and traffic came to a crawl as everyone rubbernecked. In addition, people were stopping their cars on the shoulder to watch, both on the highway as well as on a local road that ran parallel to it. There were just groups of people watching the firefighters and police try to sort out the mess (I think that I read two people ended up in the hospital).

I think that these are the people who watch the excitement. The DW and I just kept on driving up Mt. Evans to see the wildflowers.
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Old 08-04-2007, 04:58 PM   #16
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It seems to me that the news media these days is in constant competition for people's attention with many forms of entertainment, and that this trend has greatly grown since the advent of 24 hour cable news, satellite tv and the internet. I think it has led many players to migrate towards an attention grabbing format, hence the "if it bleeds, it leads" mentality...
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Old 08-05-2007, 03:25 AM   #17
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I hope this will change with the advent of technology.. where (-I don't want to use the word "interactive" because it isn't really-) it's less of a monophone megaphone blatting out the same stuff over & over.

For example, we have SKY satellite TV and on their news channel one can watch the 'regular' broadcast OR skip to the beginning headlines at any point OR choose just the sports or weather segment OR choose one or two of the main stories of the day to which they sometimes add a little more meat.. there's also a kind of interview segment, usually w/some politician. There are 6 or 8 "subchannels" in all.

If this model becomes more standard, they'll get instant feedback on who's watching what.. (then it will be up to the viewers to pick the politics/war segment over the Paris-goes-to-jail segment...). Nothing's guaranteed, but there could some hope in this for TV news.
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