Nick Eaton, our new sports video journalist at The Spokesman-Review, ran into one of those cringeworthy US vs. TV moments earlier this week when he shot a video story on mascot tryouts at Eastern Washington University. From Nick’s blog post:
“OK, it’s funny. A reporter gets into the suit and “auditions.” Har har har. Makes for a funny 30-second clip on the 5 o’clock news. But wait, Keith (the reporter) starts telling the judges how to react on camera. “Tell me, for the camera, how horrible my dancing was.” Essentially, fabricating the entire story, down to what the judges say about him.”
So what I want to know from any TV news shooters out there is how do you really feel about this. When does news become just a comedy routine? What do your really think about having to shoot this kind of schlock and do you feel it hurts your credibility when you actually produce a real story? Or is this what TV news has become. Here are both stories:
KXLY TV version
“The report is presented in a way that makes it obvious Keith is not trying to do any objective reporting. And it’s obviously not about the people who actually auditioned for Swoop that day.
It’s about Keith.
And that’s a huge difference between TV and newspaper video. I don’t think any newspaper reporter would go to an event and make the story about them. It’s just not what we do. In TV, it’s all about the reporter, the on-screen personality.
It’s TV news stories like this that will always create a divide between what TV new does and what emerging video journalists at newspapers are producing. The sad thing is, the TV reporter missed a decent story. Thankfully Eaton told a true story of what happened that day.