Thursday, August 28, 2008

All News All the Time

Olympics Day 5 - Fencing

Bill Dwyre, a Los Angeles Times sports writer, made a great point in an August 26 column. Noting all the blogger-style reporters in Beijing, he said "Reporters who once came looking for stories came this time looking for places to sit down and type. Immediately."

Dwyre goes on to point out that "instant gratification" technology may mean that the network's time-honored traditional reporting of games, conventions, etc., may be too slow to satisfy 21st century audiences. Crafting stories and presentations, with enough context and background info to make them compelling, is no longer the point--just get the news out, fast. Viewers must know within seconds who won the match, period.

My favorite paragraph-plus from Dwyre's column:

"What wasn't news became news because we...type it and hit a button that sent it to the world...
"In Chippewa Falls, Wis., Herbie hits a button and yells out, "Hey, ma, Dwight Howard just got the opening tip over Pau Gasol." Herbie is dazzled that he got the word so fast, and the typist is equally dazzled at the speed he got it there. Neither seems to wonder whether what had arrived was worth the effort on either end."

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