It’s another example of the troubling state of local news.
In an effort to promote the second season of Fox’s successful drama, Empire, based on the music industry, WNYW is unthinkably giving away its last 30 minutes following each episode. Anchors Steve Lacy and Dari Alexander host the After Empire party, complete with hip-hop themed performances and DJs spinning on the turntables. Even this week, just 24 hours after a cop was gunned down, wasn’t enough to alter their programming, although hosting duties went to entertainment reporter Simone Boyce.
Yes, a station’s late newscast (still has the Fox 5 graphic in the corner with time and temperature) airing live music. Ever heard of that one?
This makes sense on the morning newscast Good Day New York, especially in the lighter 9 a.m. hour where performers regularly take the stage.
Instagram, Twitter, Facebook—take your pick. Social media platforms are here to stay. And, apparently, so is how the news personalities use it.
The millennials rule the world. You see people everywhere looking down at their smartphones while walking, or sadly even behind the wheel. You would think news organizations are above the fray.
We’ve seen a marriage in recent years between local news and social media. Reporters can promote a story with photos from a scene. Think of it as a director’s cut on a DVD or Blu-Ray, providing extra content for interested followers. The person in the field can even engage in an impromptu live chat before going on the air. It’s a win-win for the journalist, the audience, and of course, the station.
But too many times, it doesn’t work, and is actually being abused by the talent. Even when beneficial, how often are the reporters more concerned with getting that shot for their social media fans than working on the on-air package?
Then there are the anchors who have a different mindset. Several want to stay connected with their loyal base, to the point of writing about personal information. For example, a veteran morning anchor took to Twitter, posting a picture sitting in the ER in a leg cast; another gave a medical update or his injured eye.
“Is anything private?” questions a veteran broadcasting insider.