Friday, April 20, 2007

Whats the Deal With That?

This is a big line in Seinfeld standup from the mid-nineties. I think I've found an appropriate usage.

I cannot remember if the news in Houston was like this, (although as an aside, what is the deal with Marvin Zindler?) but there is a really interesting thing they love to do on the Utah news. This thing is called "on location."

My understanding of "on location" is that you send the news reporter out into the world to cover a story. Somehow, being on location should give better insight into what is going on with a particular newsbite. Utah stations, however, seem to think that any time they go "live" to a story it is improved, even if the story is airing six to 24 hours later.

I first noticed this interesting phenomenon a few weeks ago when they had a woman reporting from the scene of the accident. The only interview in the story is one that was taped several hours earlier and the only shots, other than her talking, were of things that happened earlier in the day. She did pause to point meaningfully to some glass shards you could barely see in the dark. Plantboy and I laughed about how silly it was for her to go out to this rough neighborhood in the middle of the night to do a story that could easily have been recorded at lunch time.

Two nights ago took the cake, though. The newscaster says, "Lets go live to Thingy (or whatever her name is) for her story on domestic abuse (or whatever it was)." The camera flashes to Thingy who is live, on what looks like the patio of the Triad Center, freezing her butt off in a heavy parka with the wind whipping the hair about her face. She then proceeds to give a very profound report about domestic violence from the patio--no interviews, no footage of her having been anywhere else, and the downtown panoramic in the background had nothing to do with her story.


What is the deal with that?

3 comments: said...

Simon and I never cease to find amusement in the local news. We too have the same random on location shots that I can't figure out. My friend who lives in NY city was telling me it is just as bad there. She said she waited and waited for the much talked about story on how sun-block causes skin cancer. When the story came on it was about how if you use sun-block that is expired then it won't be effective and you could get cancer. I thought that was pretty funny.

Desmama said...

Can I guess which news station this was? Because I think I know. I despise them for this very thing.

forecast calls for rain said...

I too miss Marvin Zindler, someone like him only comes around once in awhile.