Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The Media and Self Regulation

To the Media

To the Media and Self-Regulation


I just heard on the news that the feds had requested the press stop showing stale footage of the Middle East while discussing new news about it.  I know it is inappropriate for anyone to tell the press what to cover……

However, the stale footage issue is important.  I suggest that the press self-regulate and do this:

If you are showing footage more than x days old, either label it as such or announce it as such.  It is misleading to show old footage while you are discussing what is happening now.  Match the visuals with the actual new news.

Keep track of how many times you show a segment.  Pete and Repeat loses news hounds and if it goes on for days and days like on CNN, it loses the casual viewers also as they see there is no new news and not everybody wants to see the same thing from yet another slant. 

At least program a large, important prime time world news segment that is inviolate and dependable for the viewers.  Viewers are being kept in the dark, like mushrooms, when there’s a whole world out there.    I think part of your duties as Press is to inform and thus educate the public.   

‘Breaking News’ should be reserved for x number presentations as such before it is relegated to normal news.  And ‘breaking news’ is not really just another ‘expert’ opinion.  Avoid trivialization and only use ‘breaking news’ for the most important NEW stories. 

Seek footage that matches the news you are talking about.  If Ferguson is discussed, show the streets as they are now and if you show riots, put the date and time on the segments during the whole segment run.  Matching the view with the words is part of honesty. 

Show respect for the stories you are covering by leaving out the drum beat in the background during news summaries.


I love all you reporters who risk their lives to give us the worldwide information our citizens need and crave.  My appreciation goes out to all of you and the people who prepare and present the news in the media, the technicians who bring it to us and everybody else who shares in the process.