A new low
TV people pride themselves on the avowed professionalism of their work—but, some practitioners’ performance and behavior contradict their ringing and righteous declarations, particularly in a number of news, public affairs and commentary shows.
A glaring example is a program whose hosts waste a lot of precious TV time running political and news-related “blind items” that invite viewers to guess the identities of the public miscreants of the day, with “clues” tossed in from time to time, to make the guessing game more snidely and smarmily “delicious.”
Recently, for instance, a full 30 minutes of the show were taken up as the cohosts winked and sniggered over the identity of an official caught with his pants down, his gender preference held up for question—and ridicule.
This is a poor use of TV time, because it reduces both hosts and viewers alike to the level of mean-spirited gossip mongers, instead of the involved and engaged citizens and adults they’re supposed to be.
The program has obviously been produced to encourage viewers to interest and involve themselves in the news, issues and newsmakers of the day.
But, its focus on the mere identity of an official and the nature of his gender choice is the very antithesis of its avowed objectives.
The TV people involved should know better, of course. So, why have they sunk so low?
It could be because they believe that “serious” talk and commentary about the news and important issues are too “boring” to keep viewers interested.
So, they feel that they have to resort to cheap innuendo, demeaning disparagement and sexist slurs to titillate and delight the ignorant masses.
So much for serving the members of the TV audience, and bringing out the best in them.
As we watch segments like the one we’ve described, we wonder what can be done to make unprofessional TV workers realize the obvious error of their ways.
Their errant radio-TV outfits must have station managers who are duty-bound to keep performance and service standards high. So, why have they been sleeping on the job?
And, where are the government agencies tasked to help maintain those avowed standards? Why is everybody so silent and thus “enabling?”
Finally, what do televiewers have to say?
Are they really delighted, entertained and titillated by such demeaning goings-on?
Or do they, like us, feel that they’re being used and abused, and pulled down to a ga-ga level they don’t deserve to inhabit?
If so, why don’t they complain that their valuable viewing and listening time is being wasted by irresponsible shows, whose hosts and producers think that viewers aren’t very bright, so they should be given brainless “entertainment” to shallowly—make their listening and viewing day?
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