Friday, July 12, 2013

Broadcast journalism

Yes, folks, this actually aired today on California TV station KTVU.






They've since apologized, and both they and the NTSB are blaming the error on an unidentified "summer intern."

26 comments:

Ms. Donna said...

Ik some blame on thesummer intern but broadcasters are the "blondes" of journalism.

D. said...

Oh, my God.

KTVU is a Fox outlet, but even Fox outlets are supposed to have standards. Frankly, they probably know who composed that slide, and that person should never be able to get a job in media again. But will. It's Fox.

Your Doctor's Wife said...

I wonder how many people that had to go through before it made it on the screen. TERRIBLE!

Ivan Ilyich said...

I expect that intern is out.

=) said...

wow...

Anonymous said...

I'm missing something here?!

drimeara said...

How wrong is it that as soon as I read the "names"... I literally LOL'ed?

Anonymous said...

If I was a 20 something intern.
"NTSB intern S speaking."
TV station. "Yes this is KTVU we are calling to confirm the names of the pilots on asiana flight 214"

"sure what are the names?"

TV station reads off names.

I sit there thinking this is either a crank call or the people at the TV station are a bunch of idiots "Hang on one moment let me check" ruffles some papers. sarcastic replay "Yep that is correct the names are Sum Ting Wong, Wi Tu Lo, Ho Lee Fuk, and Bang Ding Ow" repeated back slowly.

Good grief wanting to blame it on the intern at the NTSB.

Silliyak said...

The intern was at NTSB,(who verified the names "I"M HELPING!") I would think they are gone, but the author, from the local station, as yet unidentified, is the one in the most trouble when and if they are caught. Another intern I would guess, but who knows?

was1 said...

@D. your (political) slip is showing. cover up.

@drimeara. i'm with you. funniest thing i've seen so far today.

Anonymous said...

Just goes to show how far journalism has fallen. If the "journalists" had been watching someones elses news reports earlier in the week, they would have seen the actual names of the pilots.
But hey, it's Fox, so no one believes what they pass as news anyway.

Moose said...

Years ago, back before the Interweb, when we geeks had to rely on Usenet to have bitchy cat fights and flame wars, there was a long thread of people who worked with computers talking about horror tales.

One of my all-time favorites was the tale of the guy who worked for a Big Credit Card Company. They were in the process of finishing up and testing new software for the billing system, which involved putting in a lot of "test" things. As they went on, they started getting downright silly.

One day, upper management (who, typically, had the technical ability of mashed potatoes) insisted that the new billing software had to go out 'next week'. Apparently, in some Dilbert-ian truth, one Upper Manager had bragged about how awesome the new billing system was and how much money it was going to save the company and blah blah blah.

The actual programming manager protested -- they weren't done with the testing, there was still too much to be done, all to no avail. So a bunch of programmers worked all weekend to strip out all the silly crap they'd added while testing and trying things out. On Monday the new billing software was pushed out.

Needless to say, they missed a few things. About five hundred bills went out that had on them, "Pay up or we'll rape your wife" before they caught it and stopped any more from being sent.

Heads rolled, of course, and as I recall, none of the heads that rolled were of the upper management who insisted on shoving out code before it was ready.

But the real lesson was, don't put stupid shit in your test environment, because it might get shoved out into production before you can clean it up. Lorem Ipsum exists for a reason.

Ivan Ilyich said...

The latest is that the phoney names originated at the station. All the NTSB intern did was confirm the names, even though he did not know them himself and had no authority to speak for the NTSB anyway.

KTVU has not yet reported whether they have identified the joker.

Aesop said...

The intern blamed was supposedly at KTVU, not at the NTSB.

And that's a term of art, since interns aren't hired, nor will they be fired. If 20 year olds have that much power at your station, it's time to hand the FCC license off to YouTube, and let 12 year olds run the show.

This one, in fact, now has a pretty fabulous resume to shop as a comedy writer for Conan or Craig Ferguson's show. And will likely be hired as such, in short order.

The onus on this is to the producer and the newsreader (aka "broadcast journalist) who couldn't be bothered to read the copy once over before air, and couldn't figure out they were being had in the 0.002 seconds it takes normal people to get the joke.

"Anchor/-porters" are in fact, a bunch of blow-dried airheads without the brains to blow their noses. When even Don Henley ("Dirty Laundry") could figure that out 30 years ago, this ain't rocket science.

It's also not worth making a big deal out of, any more than complaining when dogs mark fire hydrants and trees.

Ivan Ilyich said...

Aesop, that's not what the NTSB says. There is an article on the CBS News website reporting the NTSB apologizing for the actions of its intern. Whether there was another intern at KTVU, I don't know.

Anonymous said...

I wonder what was going through the anchor's mind as she was reading that - did she really not realize, or felt the best thing to do was power through pretending they were real names?
Moose, a similar thing happened at my college newspaper. They were in the habit of inserting nonsense in articles for proofreaders to find, claiming it was to keep them attentive, and one day someone did it on an article unaware that it had already been proofed and wasn't going to be again. The result was an article on some banal topic with the phrase "Heil Hitler!" randomly inserted in the middle of a paragraph, with no relation to the text at all. They apologized and reran the correct article in the next issue.

Anonymous said...

The NTSB has said pretty clearly that they do not name the pilots in cases like this, so if there's an "intern," it's on the KTVU station-side.

Also, KTVU *just* strained themselves patting themselves on the back for their "accurate" coverage and the "expediency" in posting the crash info. They did this in print. The phrase "Pride Goeth Before a Great Fall" should be looming large in any and all future attempts at touting their greatness.

Lastly, the names of two of the pilots (the real ones) were on the Fox News Website for several days. Had they the sense to read their own damn interwebz, they could have avoided having egg on their faces.

DH and I have been saying "Ho Lee Fuk" to each other repeatedly since yesterday afternoon. It gives him the giggles something fierce. KTVU is one of the crappier news channels in my area. Glad to see that yet another Faux affiliate lives up to its standards.

Cape Cod Step-Mom said...

Reports from the NTSB, says that their intern, acting without authority confirmed those names.

Patti Cadwallader said...

Ha! This is totally funny to me. Beats the hell out of regular news which isn't funny at all. Okay...inappropriate, but Ho Lee Fuk is the name of my new band!

In the Bay Area said...

I feel kinda bad for the news anchor who was reading the names on the air. You can tell she thinks something is off; and when she gets to the third name she knows it's wrong.

She also came back on the air to apologize for the station; and she looked truly pissed off at whomever put her in that position.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, I'm not seeing how anyone can find anything even remotely humorous about this. And let's not forget three children died in this tragedy, one of whom after going horrific suffering for a week. Or does that not matter because they are Asian and not quite the same as us white folk?

Anonymous said...

i think in great britian they are called "news readers" seems a term we should adopt.

Anonymous said...

I was hoping for more time seeing the anchor that was reading that...she looked kind of hot. And I too am going to hell, since I LOL'd.

Packer said...

You forgot We To Lo. He was on the original list. Also Pre Now,

Stacey Gordon said...

There are not usually 4 pilots either.... crew, yes, 4 pilots? Engineer, etc...

Ivan Ilyich said...

Now we know "the rest of the story," from Matier and Ross in today's (July 25) SF Chronicle. The joke seems to have originated, as one might expect, from some clown on the internet. A stringer for KTVU News picked it up and fed it to them, missing the joke. Because this person was considered an "expert" source, they swallowed it. The station did a superficial job of seeking confirmation, getting an intern at the NTSB thinking they had reached a spokesman. The overworked staff at KTVU, under pressure to get the news out ahead of the competition, clearly did not bother to read what they had written before running with it.

The NTSB has fired their intern, and now four producers at KTVU, some of them veterans, have been terminated. A bloodbath.

 
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