We’ve Got Breaking News….As Soon as We Notify the Family That Is and The World is A Sadder Place Today

I love a good double standard. A lot of them exist but I really love the ones involving the media of all types. News organizations love to “track down the information and if necessary get in your face because the viewers/readers have a right to know”. That is until it involves something going on at a particular station or newspaper. Then they circle the wagons and order everyone to keep their mouths shut. Oh some stations will put themselves out there like the time an anchor in Jacksonville, FL was caught up in a prostitution ring or something similar. If I remember correctly, that station covered the court hearings and everything else. Now they may not have played it quite as high in the newscasts as the other stations in the market but they at least covered it. Which brings me to the point of this part of the posting. The NBC network cost a guy his job because he dared to post information before they (the network) was ready. (Thanks to BJ for sharing this tidbit from News Blues. )

Here’s the excerpt from Newsblues: Internet Broadcasting Systems has fired the employee who edited Tim Russert’s Wikipedia page, posting news of Russert’s death nearly 40 minutes before NBC made the official announcement.

The New York Times reports this morning that Russert collapsed in NBC’s Washington newsroom around 1:40 p.m. on Friday, June 13. He was treated there and then taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly after his arrival at 2:23 p.m. NBC was determined to withhold the news of his death until it was certain every member of his family had been notified.

This is what BJ had to say about NBC’s move: As sad as it is, I’m struck by the hypocrisy. Would NBC wait until every member of a dead public figure’s family was notified before going with the story? Of course not. Was the employee fired for doing something wrong or fired for just getting it out there before NBC wanted it out there. Again, the hypocrisy is somewhat astounding.

I agree. How many times have local stations fallen all over themselves to “bring this information first”. Yes, there are supposed to be checks and balances. That’s the way it is supposed to work and should work. Yes, I can understand why NBC and anyone else for that matter would want to contact the victim’s family and let them know. But in these days of almost instant communication via the internet, text messaging and what-not, the chances of you getting scooped on something big happening within your own organization has increased greatly. NBC should apologize or at least help the hapless and now “former Internet Broadcast System employee” find a new job. Afterall, how many newsrooms would love to have a go-getter like that who shows some initiative.

The world will be less funny from now on because of the passing of comic great George Carlin.  I remember the first time I heard George ( I didn’t know him but I think he would want me to call him George).  Back in the 70s, my sister in law had just bought his album “Occupation: Foole”.  We almost wore that LP out listening to it over and over.  I learned about “the seven dirty words you can’t say on TV” and “the Dozens”:…. Want to play the dozens, well the dozens is a game and the way I ……okay you get the point. Maybe it was because I was getting ready to go off to college and be on my own to some degree that I found his take on life and life’s events a breath of fresh air.  Plus, his observations on everyday activities and situations really just cracked me up.  I regret I never saw him perform live.  I think that would really have been a trip.   George Carlin, you will be missed.

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