In defense of TV reporters

You know the public image of TV news reporters, right?  They’re unethical, lazy and overpaid. Not.

In this brilliant blog post, former Atlanta TV reporter Doug Richards  debunks  those myths, and several more–like this one:

They can tell you what’s really going on. Well, yes.  But chances are they’ve put almost everything they know into a story already.

It always amazed me, when I was reporting for CBS and CNN, how many people thought I knew much more than I was telling them on the air.  Of course there were times when I got stuff off the record, but my goal was always to find a way of confirming it so I could use it.   I heard this assumption a lot, too:

They have writers who tell them what to say. No.  They write it, which explains why some of it is so poorly written.

Ha! It also explains why one of my most requested workshop topics has always been “better broadcast writing.”