What’s Hot/What’s Not: 01/09/11

What’s Hot:

Arizona Shooting Spree – Saturday and Sunday Cable News went into hyper-drive to cover the shooting spree in Tuscon Arizona. Keith Olbermann delivered a special comment Saturday that threw down the gauntlet on speech that could incite and included himself on the list of the guilty. Not everyone was on board with Olbermann’s epiphany however.

CNN Mulling Dropping Kathleen Parker from Parker Spitzer – No decision has been made but tonight’s news flash leak is going to increase the pressure Parker Spitzer to do something to reverse it’s terrible ratings trend.

John Roberts to FNC – In shock news, Roberts decided not to stay with CNN after being removed from American Morning. It shouldn’t have been shock news really but because it appeared that CNN and Roberts were working towards a new deal that would keep him at the network, it wound up being shock news.

O’Reilly to Interview Obama Before Super Bowl – Big get for O’Reilly. Big get for FNC.

Ted Williams – That “Golden Voice” guy was all over TV this week…

HLN Primetime Changes – Joy Behar moves to 10pm ET so that Dr. Drew can premiere at 9pm ET…

Piers Morgan’s First Guest is Oprah – Morgan revealed this week that Winfrey would be his first interview.

What’s Not:

Piers Morgan’s First Guest is Oprah – The assembled critics were openly skeptical that Morgan’s “get” was much of a get. We shall see.

Ed Schultz – Schultz called Republicans “Bastards” on MSNBC. He quickly apologized.

MSNBC’s Silly Debt Ceiling Stunt – Poor Richard Lui. You know it’s bad when Chris Jansing teases you on the air…

Oh, no you DIDN’T?!?! – Mika let slip something she shouldn’t have let slip on Morning Joe this week. I thought there was a permanent 7 second delay on Morning Joe after Joe’s repeated Bombs?

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23 Responses to “What’s Hot/What’s Not: 01/09/11”

  1. Didn’t KO also call out Obama about the FNC interview?

  2. Silly me, I thought that the debt ceiling “bit” was one of the highlights of the entire month, so far.
    I also thought that Saturday was an excellent test on the ability of the MSM to react, professionally, to a shocking and evolving situation. Some success and some not up to expected standards.
    Giving everyone the benefit of the doubt, though, thought that MSNBC, FOX and CNN worked very hard to do the best that they could, under the circumstances.

  3. ^ I agree generally, Fred, but the reports of Giffords’ death were inexcusable. In FNC’s case, what were they doing going with NPR’s word, anyway? Everybody blew it, starting with NPR. Because of their mad rush to be ‘first’, we spent a few minutes contemplating the assissasination of a member of Congress. A little journalism would’ve been nice..

  4. The Obama interview is on the Fox Broadcast Superbowl pregame; not FNC. I guess it’s a get by association but I don’t see it as a big get for FNC..

  5. imnotblue Says:

    ^ It’s a get bhy FNC because O’Reilly is one of their guys, and will likely re-air on FNC later on.

  6. ^ It means Fox News gets the pre-game slot on the Super Bowl. That’s a big get for them.

  7. joe, My assumption is that the reported death occured when the weekend staffs were in place and “facts” were not seriously being confirmed. This in no way implies that the hosts had any choice but to go with what was presented by the staffs. As the day wore on, the staffs were reenforced with more experience, or, at least it seemed that way to me.

  8. FNC was always going to get the POTUS interview; if it happened at all; it’s on Fox Broadcast after all.

    It was just a question of who got the gig. O’Reilly is the best fit for Obama as his ego and pomposity will be a good counterpoint to the POTUS’s intelligence and humor.

  9. Fred: Your assumption is wrong because the death wasn’t reported until some of FNC’s “A” was already on. Their original reporting of it, as I recall, was that “NPR is now reporting… but Fox has not confirmed.” Later, the report (I believe it was by Brett Baier) was that, Fox News has confirmed that…” and that they had two independent confirmations, including from someone at the US Capitol.

  10. -ED Hill & Spizter-

    I don’t think so. Spitzer was pushing his way in and interrupting her that time she guest hosted. I think Spud’s got it right – either dump Spitzer or give him his own show.

  11. ^Al, Of course you may well be correct. I am only going by what I heard rotating around the various Networks. Obviously, my loyalty centered on MSNBC.
    NPR did place an explanation for their error on Facebook.
    Let’s just agree that it was an absolute and very unfortunite error that, probably could have been avoided if everyone wasn’t in such a rush to be “first” with breaking news.

  12. I assumed NPR was on the scene initially. This is what they said on their website about it:

    The information we reported came from two different governmental sources, including a source in the Pima County Sheriff’s Department.

    How would governmental sources know she was dead that early in time? And how could they be so wrong? What about the source in the sheriffs department? They had people on the scene and Giffords was breathing.

    I don’t suppose any of these anonymous folks will get identified and queried, eh? Its so much easier to just play YouTube videos, rehash, and repeat.

  13. Thanks for that link, fred. And that explains quite a bit. I’m not so sure they were “trying to be first”. I was also monitoring NPR yesterday and, like Fox, I had the impression they were legitimately waiting for two independent confirmations before going with it. From your link, it sounds as if those networks had what they thought to be official confirmations.

  14. But in FNC’s case (the only one I watched, so focusing on what I saw), they ran it as “NPR says”. They didn’t wait for confirmation, and I don’t think NPR did, either.

  15. What I heard on FNC was something like, “Fox News has not confirmed this, but NPR (and I think they also attributed AP, but I might be mistaken) is reporting that …. is dead. Again, we have not confirmed this and we’re working on this and will get it to you as soon as we do.” I remember several qualifiers used on that. Then later, while whoever was anchoring had Brett Baier on, he reported something along the lines of, “Fox News can now report, that is, we have just now independently confirmed that Congresswoman…. has died. These are two government sources and I just got off the phone with another…”

    One of the sources FNC cited was the Pima sheriff’s department. The other was identified as a reliable source inside the US Capitol. Seems to me, that meets the two-source, independent confirmation rule. Also seems to me that a sheriff’s department shouldn’t be releasing that information even if it is true.

  16. Could be that the “blame” for the misreporting isn’t rightly on the reporters or networks. Still, they were wrong. Maybe during this type of a breaking news event there needs to be a higher confirmation standard.

    Show me a multiple-victim breaking story that doesn’t initially have whole bunch of reporting errors and I’ll show you a too-well choreographed conspiracy.

  17. Here’s where I think FNC screwed up: Even if the reporting had been correct, they didn’t take the time to verify that her immediately family had been notified and that they’ve been given sufficient clearance to go public with what they know. “Independent confirmation” is fine for most things, but the acceptable standard for reporting on the death of a government official should be nothing less than an official and properly released public statement.

  18. ^ YES.
    That’s the thing that gets me about it. It used to be that ‘next of kin’ was sacrosanct. It’s not like she’s the President or something. We Could Have Waited.

  19. ^ YES, TOO. That’s why I’m busting on them so hard. There were lots of errors the first few hours that add up to “it was confusing, who cares”, but erroneously reporting the assassination of a member of Congress is Very Bad.

  20. ^ I guess the difference, Joe, is that the “erroneous” part may not be their fault because they did get independent confirmation. That they reported it at all, however, is their fault. And I never give a rat’s which network is first to report something. Does anyone?

  21. THEY care. It’s a contest, of the snow-melting variety.

  22. alternative analysis database…

    What’s Hot/What’s Not: 01/09/11 « Inside Cable News…

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