News Broadcasters and Speculation

Tuesday night, I decided to watch TV after completing most of my homework for class the next day. Not a regular phenomenon, I lounged on my bed flipping through the channels trying to find something interesting and not a re-run. Finally, I decided to stop my channel surfing on Comedy Central, and watch whatever was left of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

Some Rights Reserved by Peabody Awards

Some Rights Reserved by Peabody Awards

Stewart was in the middle of a particularly riveting segment detailing what he believes were mistakes made by CNN during their live coverage of the Navy yard shooting, where Aaron Alexis shot and killed 12 people. Stewart found the broadcasters fixation on small details, like the building’s size, and their speculations about what was occurring within the building, ridiculous.

The segment then continues with Stewart’s team parodying CNN’s coverage. They stand on New York streets commenting on how tall buildings are, despite no breaking news occurring at the scene.

This false style of broadcast journalism seems to be running rampant these days. This summer, comedian Russell Brand gave an interview on MSNBC’s program, Morning Joe, about his upcoming world tour. The interviewers were incapable of focusing on anything besides his accent and his style of dress. At one point, Brand does a better job at being a morning show host than the people who are supposed to be interviewing him.

Nowadays, TV networks are known by their bias, seemingly focused solely on how many viewers they can entice to view their program — potentially preventing the important news from being delivered to the public. Networks spend copious amounts of time discussing pop culture events, rather than important world events, like the civil war in Syria.

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3 responses to “News Broadcasters and Speculation

  1. You definitely illustrated what may be the biggest debacle in broadcast journalism. The world has so many newsworthy events–important things that citizens should know about–that don’t get enough, if any, coverage. Broadcast journalists still need to entice an audience that they seem to believe doesn’t really care about harder-hitting issues and topics. I think broadcast networks need to give more credit to the American public. They might find that Lindsay Lohan’s latest drug scandal ISN’T what we really care about after all.

  2. It is a journalist’s job to provide the news but also provide it in a way that makes people listen. It is part of breaking down the barriers between the journalist and their audience. Broadcast journalism seems like it is often putting up more hurdles than they are taking down with this kind of reporting.

  3. It is sad that in many ways people would rather hear about pop culture rather than world events, like the civil war in Syria. American’s are celebrity obsessed and don’t fully understand the importance of staying informed on current events. I think it is difficult for journalist to keep the public interested while covering the tough topics.

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