Last Friday morning, a television in the other room delivered news of the tragedy unfolding in Japan. That’s when I heard the following exchange between three KTLA Morning News folks:
Frank Buckley: Gayle just said a moment ago that the pictures are telling the story and we’re getting amazing pictures, amazing video, photographs into the newsroom from Japan this morning.
Michaela Pereira: And Jessica’s been sifting through them and giving us a look at what some of the journalists and also just regular Joe Citizen is seeing in Japan.
Jessica Holmes: You know, sometimes the perspective of the people is the most interesting and the most telling of a situation like this and we have several photos of the damage left behind from the massive quake…
Joe Citizen? Really? Sometimes the perspective of the people is the most interesting? Wow. The arrogance of “Joe Journalist” is palpable.
I hate to break it to you, Joe, but you don’t own storytelling. You may be able to “report” on a story, but let’s be honest, the limitations imposed by your creed preclude you from compelling storytelling, which requires more than a balanced-view of the facts.
Our new-found ability to create and distribute content far and wide has shaken Joe Journalist’s confidence to the core. And although he’ll gladly use our video in his newscasts, although he’ll label it as “Amateur Video,” he’ll never be able to tell a better story than those who live through the events that he reports on.
Photo Credit: WiGuardPics