In the media relations world, we know that some stories just don’t have TV appeal. They are either not visual, too complex to boil down into a 90-second story or just too routine for news producers and assignment editors to care about.
As part of the media evolution that we are seeing, the “if it bleeds, it leads” mentality is still out there and remains a staple for many TV news outlets. The number of roll-over crashes and other auto accidents covered at the top of newscasts is evidence of that.
But there are some new rivals competing for time in the “A-block” of newscasts. Sadly, it’s not photojournalists who are doing the work, utilizing their talents to tell stories with pictures while captivating their audiences with journalistic know-how.
It’s not even unqualified citizen-journalists capturing video on their phones that are becoming the undisputed go-to source.
It’s new-fangled visuals, culled from police-car dash-cams, police-officer body-cams and mounted surveillance cams that are beginning to steal the show – no photojournalist required.
Add a live, high-speed chase and we’ve filled our newscast with everything TV viewers care about while giving the TV stations everything they care about – ratings.
A formidable challenge lies ahead for TV news as we know it.