Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Jan. 21: Incomplete Inauguration Coverage

By Sylvia Gurinsky

It felt like a few people were missing from much of the South Florida media coverage of the presidential inauguration - like this region's congressional delegation and civic leaders who went to the ceremony.

The coverage of South Florida inauguration events was very good. Television and newspaper coverage of what happened in Washington was mixed to bad.

There was no excuse for any major media outlet not to have its first team in Washington for this huge story. That includes budget cutting.

Plenty of people have said that traditional media are slowly committing suicide. That's due to more than the current bad economy. That's due to years of bean counters slowly compromising good journalism for the next quarter's earnings. Because of that, both the good journalism and the good earnings are gone.

“Instead of putting more water in the soup, we put in more tomatoes," said one-time New York Times executive A.M. Rosenthal of the paper's choices during a previous economic rough patch.

Newspapers, television stations, radio stations and Web sites all need more tomatoes. For this story, however, too many just put water in the soup.

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