Daily Archives: 3 February 2005

Live, From My Computer!

I realize that the local TV news business is a very
competitive one but I wonder why they do some of the things
they do. For example, this concentration on going “live” to
report a story. One local TV station (KHNL) sets up their
camera just outside their front door and then trumpets the
fact that they are live on Nimitz Highway. Said highway runs
past their front door so I guess they aren’t lying about the
location but it’s not exactly the truth either.

Then they will cut away from that shot and go “live” from
“Kalihi”. While the station is in the Kalihi area,
where they are actually broadcasting live from is just
outside their back door. From there they sometimes cut back
to their “Weather Center.” Said weather center is a chair
inside their studio.

Even when some of these stations go live at a location
other than their studios it doesn’t make any sense. I saw one
live shot (KITV) done after 22:00 at the state Capitol. The
only thing is the Capitol was closed, the lights were out,
and nobody was there. Except the reporter. The station could
just as easily have done this story in the studio with a
picture of the Capitol building in the background. But, for
whatever reason, they were “live.”

All I can say is, “So what?” What does going live to a
location have to do with a story that is not occurring at the
time the station goes live? Do stations get rated by the
on how often they go live? Do stations get higher advertising
revenues by the number of live stories they do? Does going
live prove anything?

All I can say is there seems to be a inverse relationship
between the number of times a station goes live and how well
and how in depth that station does the news. Perhaps, this is
not a coincidence.