News War

Frontline tackled the news. It tackled itself and did a good job it.

Lowell Bergman did the first three parts of the four part series called News War.  I saw episodes 1 and 3 but missed 2 and 4. What I saw I liked. In fact I really liked it.

I worked TV marketing and promotion in 3 different medium and small markets for nearly 7 years. I learned a lot and met some interesting folks along the way. Granted I’ve always been critical of the news business and I feel for good reason. This series didn’t tell me anything I didn’t already know but it was still a good, informative series and did show me some things that I didn’t know people were doing.

Part 1 was all about the Plame Affair. It was interesting to see and reflect on and see the history of reporters and their souces and how lawyers spin decisions and how judges interpret them.

Part 3 I found particualrly interesting because it focused more on the state of news and where it could be heading. The kicker was the fact that they started the episode by talking about The Daily Show on Comedy Central and talking with the producer of the show. A couple of years ago The Daily Show was voted something like best news program on TV. Funny for a show that’s a FAKE NEWS SHOW.

The producer was even more concerned. He said something to the effect that they won the distinction not because what they were doing was so good but because everyone ealse was doing things so poorly.

I couldn’t agree more.

The episode went on to cover many more angles from the current economics of the news media to the changing distribution model. Again, it wasn’t ground breaking but for the outsiders looking in I think it would have been very insightful.

In the end Frontline did an amazing job of repoirting. It’s a shame that other programs can’t or won’t be this good.  


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