On the spot news coverage

On the spot news coverage October 25, 2010

As somebody who spent 10 years as a street reporter I love this clip. But for all the fun it provides, there is a very serious statement in here about the way in which news is handled and distributed these days. Perhaps there is also commentary here about the ways in which our critical thinking skills are being undermined.

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  • The people in the clip are all real news anchors/reporters in my are (DFW). They carry it out as well as anything the Onion actors have ever done.

    • Karen Spears Zacharias

      Well you got a great group of anchors there. Fine sense of humor.

  • Years ago I used to say that if Karl Marx had lived in our day (back then), he’d have written “Television is the opiate of the people.” Today he might choose to not write at all, concluding “Oh, what’s the use?”

    • Karen Spears Zacharias

      Reminds me of a few years back when I was in a meeting with a beloved writing teacher/author who had decided that she would never again teach writing. She bemoaned that her students lacked critical thinking skills.

      • My late Vietnam vet buddy Jack who headed the now vanished Aviation Maintenance Technology program at Clayton State on the edge of Atlanta was numbed by the inability to think critically in his students. Over the years he saw the problem worsen considerably. We only learn it by doing it and seeing it done by others. A former boss of mine had a nice little response to statements that he found to be shaky or baseless: Do you just think that, or do you KNOW that? Now I’m reading stories about toddlers whose first words upon awakening are “iPhone? iPhone? want iPhone!” Critical thought not only takes discipline; it takes time. When the spaces between the trickles and dumps of new information/stimuli/distractions are no longer measured in minutes or hours but nanoseconds, critical thought may never get a place in line.

  • I totally agree, Karen. This was pretty funny, but they make a great point and commentary – as much as I hate to admit. Everything in the news and the world is being so boiled down and highlighted and spoon fed to viewers and readers. Take that into consideration and add the fact that advertisers are gradually controlling more and more influence of news content and commentary – it actually scares the daylights out of me!

    • Karen Spears Zacharias

      It should scare you. It would scare more people if they even began to understand it. Did you see Anderson Cooper’s piece about the number of politicians who were flat out refusing to be interviewed except by the journalists of their choosing, or as one said — we want to dictate what questions you ask us.
      I’m familiar with that line of thinking. I witnessed it first-hand in Hanoi.

  • John in PDX

    I looked it up on Snopes. The sniper was actually trying to shoot himself.

    • Karen Spears Zacharias

      John: Your are full of wisdom beyond your years.