Monday, December 31, 2012

West Webster coverage: too much?

Posted By on Mon, Dec 31, 2012 at 11:14 AM

I realize I'm leaving myself wide open here, but I'm uncomfortable with the wall-to-wall coverage of the tragic deaths of Webster firefighters Mike Chiapperini and Tomasz Kaczowka. Photographers need their shots, obviously, but live Tweeting from the funerals? It feels perverse, and I'm not sure what the news value is.

My co-worker, Jeremy Moule, disagrees. He says the public needs to understand that Chiapperini and Kaczowka were real people; they deserve that, he says, given that they chose to risk their lives for the public good. I completely agree, but I think you can do that without the funeral play-by-play.

Another co-worker, Eric Rezsnyak, says the news value is questionable and that the media seems to be trying to out-grieve each other. You need to collapse to the floor wailing, he says, or else be accused of not being sad enough. The irony is that approach is about the mourners, and not the mourned.

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