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Monday, November 26, 2007

REALITY SHOW

Media critic Howard Kurtz's new book, Reality Show is entertaining, a bit gossipy
(Katie Couric's dog poops on the floor) and enlightening. It seems that our high profile news anchors, Katie , Brian and Charlie face the same challenges as many of us who live work and function on far less an exalted plane. They answer to younger people paid far less than they are (can't relate to that!) whose first mantra is to save money and cut corners. One way to do that is to increase revenue with cutesy newscasts. The Couric team tried that and failed--BIG. They're back now with a classier product. Newshounds like Williams seem to fight constant battles as to what is news. I thought Brian-and I'm a Brian fan-was paid all this money because he's supposed to know. Kurtz seems t0 give the overall nod to Charlie Gibson at ABC, and is fair to Couric. It's a good book.

All of us here fight to say what is music. And what do people want to hear? I don't presume to know m0re than anyone but one of the reasons my colleagues and I are here is because WE are supposed to know that. The new "no harpsichord-major keys-few vocals" rule is coming in. Sure we all want more listeners and we all want a wide variety but I just wish the focus wasn't so much on money and capturing people and more on "what is something fantastic we can offer to the public today?" A joyful job is getting harder to do.
And I wonder if Brian Williams deals with people who solicit his opinion , then ingnores it and does what they like...in secret!


But Kurtz's book is a good read. Recommended.

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