Monday, February 18, 2008

An interesting debate...

So, this isn't politics but it's an interesting story in our newsroom today. I'm sure you've heard about the massive meat recall. Well, I believe 20 school districts in our state got the tainted meat. CNN has made video of the "downed" cows and "inhumane" conditions available. Our news managers made a decision not to air the video because it may disturb some viewers much like harmed pets, etc.

Instead we showed video of cows in fields and beef being cooked. This evening we actually have video of the beef that's being recalled.

We have been bombarded by email and angry phone calls because we are not airing the cow video. The viewers claim we are not being truthful or telling the entire story by not showing the video. We talk about the investigation that led to the video but no matter what we say these viewers are adament about their opinion.

It's an interesting question because newspapers will not show video so their stories are not accurate? I'm not siding either way because, frankly, I don't make those decisions here, but I thought it was an interesting behind the scenes look at what happens in some newsrooms.

So, the dinner table question for you tonight is are we not being truthful by trying to be conservative for more sensitive viewers and just using the information itself?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The video is highly disturbing!

I'm concerned about any viewer calling to complain. It sounds to me like they've already seen it and are not bothered about wanting to see it again and again, hour after hour. If you're a sicko, DVR it from another source.

My concern now is focused on schools buying meat on the cheap. I'm not a parent, but when that day comes I'll be sending the kids off with a lunch I made. At least I'll make decisions I feel are safer than the schools.