Thursday, September 5, 2013

Would You Do This For Your Job?

This is the news crew at KUTV, the CBS affiliate in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Is this a good promo for their newscasts? Or is this not how good journalists should behave/be represented?

Does it diminish their credibility or make you want to watch them even more?

35 comments:

Joe said...

I can understand why they'd want to do this from a promotional standpoint, sure. But as a Serious Person who values Serious Journalism, it just absolutely SUCKS to see professionals pandering to the meme-set like this. I'd much rather them dissect this song on air, which has a pretty repulsive and problematic message.

I guess it's par for the course though, TV Newscasters are pretty much morons.

Yousif said...

I'm sure you can have "serious journalism" (whatever that is) paired with light-heated anchors. When I watch the morning news, I can only watch select anchors. NBC10 use to be my go-to when I had TV because the anchors were not only reporting the news, they were funny and made my morning better.

Anchors should entertain AND present news. Likeable people are much better than robots, and if you don't believe that, you should totally check out clips from Australia's Today Show that feature Karl Stefanovic's charming and hilarious TV personality.

As for this news station, I'd totally check them out based on the video.

Andrew Vanech said...

I wonder who came up with this idea. Where are they as far as ratings that they are doing this? If anything this works for the morning news. Morning news programs are more inviting to help you get prepared for the morning. That's the only target audience I could think of.

Tyler Carmody said...

It all depends on the actual newscast. Lighthearted news requires a lighthearted news team, i.e. "Fox and Friends." However, the news can still be NEWS, no matter how lighthearted it appears!

Tom Dougherty said...

I probably would do it and this certainly isn't the only place that has done things like this. I know TSN did some things with some of the most respected hockey journalists and CSN did a couple things with Call Me Maybe and the Harlem Shake so this isn't just out of the ordinary.

The point is the sell the newscast. It's an advertisement, so I don't think it hurts the credibility of the anchors and reporters. They aren't doing the news in this; they're promoting their newscast, which this was probably orchestrated from higher ups in the first place.

bspause said...

Coming from a hometown news station, a stunt like this doesn't necessarily surprise me. They were attempting to bring in viewers, and establish a light-hearted tone towards their audiences.

Would I do this for my job? Absolutely not. Despite the fact that my dancing skills are on par with what was displayed here, this video, along with anything else posted in the public sphere, will be there forever.

What started out as an advertising ploy, will be a flag on these journalist's professional resumes forever.

Anonymous said...

I don't think it's that big of a deal. They obviously were targeting a younger audience in this commercial. It was meant to be comical and funny not taken so seriously. Blurred lines was a very successful summer song so they used it. The fact that it was so controversial had nothing to do with it. They picked the song because the audience they were targeting would know and relate to it.
-Artensa

Julianne Johnson said...

I think it's harmless fun, honestly. I know everyone is up in arms over this because "Blurred Lines" is the so-called "Rape Anthem" but honestly, I think this news channel took a famous song that they knew their viewing audience would recognize and parodied it in order to rake in even higher ratings. I would definitely do this if my job asked me to because it's fun and it in NO way tells the viewers what kind of journalist I am and I would still watch this channel's broadcast because this in NO way tells me what kind of journalists they are. There's no provocative dancing or raunchy lyrics a la Robin Thicke; all this is is a mere push for higher ratings with the current modern generation.

Logan Beck said...

As a consumer, I have to say after viewing this commercial, I would reconsider whether or not this news source is credible or not. Sure, it may be entertaining to see anchors in a different light, I don't think this sort of advertisement is entirely necessary. Especially in light of recent events wtih the VMA's and Miley Cyrus's debacle of a performance, older audiences now associate this song with that display, which is not becoming on anyone. For a younger audience, perhaps this is appealing and entertaining, and it may even persuad young viewers to watch their broadcast. However, personally I believe that journalists should be presented in a professional, dignified manner, and unforunately this display does not correlate with that image. Although I cannot judge these anchors journalistic abilities on this commercial, as a consumer I can choose to discredit them if I feel that they are not a "serious" news provider.

Jd Fogarty said...

As I said in class, I don't think that we can truly judge their integrity as journalists until we actually see them deliver the news. Is it stupid? Absolutely. Will it ruin their image? Perhaps to some people. But the purpose of this ad (to get viewers) worked on me personally because now I want to watch them to see if they're actually good journalists.

Phil Dupont said...

This is a silly marketing ploy. It has one purpose and that is to get viewers. That being said, getting viewers is only part of the process of delivering the news. Though I do agree that this video in no way shows the journalistic talents or ethics of these men and women, I believe that people, especially journalists, should have respect for themselves in regards to their profession. As far as whether or not I'd do something like this for MY job, I'd have to say that before signing onto an idea like this, I'd suggest a more professional approach. In the end I wouldn't partake. There are many other ways in which news organizations can attain viewers. Sacrificing the integrity of one's anchors and reporters to do so is not a very good one. Is this video creative? Yes it is. Was it wise for KUTV to publish it? Numbers never lie, however I'd have to say no.

Mark McCormick said...

They want their viewers to know maybe, that even though as serious as news is sometimes, that they're normal just like them. They're a local news channel. They probably wouldn't think when making this commercial that they it would be publicized and mocked at all. I think it's a good way of advertising their channel to make viewers think of the channel as relaxing and fun.
I don't think, however, that a larger news corporation like NBC, or CNN, that a national news team would do this, because other media would get on them and either mock them, or give them bad reps since they're nationally known.

Geo said...

How about this - yes, it is a marketing ploy, an advertisement meant to draw people to their newscasts, right?

Now, do you think that during their newscast, they are putting out the most important news of the day/moment or are they continuing the attempt to draw more people to their newscasts?

Does the video set a precedent for what are the motivations of the station?

- George
(the teacher, who would not be caught dead dancing like these fools)

Anonymous said...

Personally, I find this disgraceful! They cannot call themselves real journalists; nobody will take them seriously. A newscast which is using such a low-class advertisement is most definitely not presenting the most important news of the day/moment. Clearly the station does not care about their responsibility to inform the public, but solely how to make the most money. It is sad that such pathetic entertainment is what draws the most views! I think this says more about the values of the general public than the media itself. After all, it is a question of supply and demand.

-Rachael Clark

Matthew Leister said...

First of all, it is obviously a terrible choice of song. Not only is the subject matter suspect but the song was also sued for plagiarism over the summer.

Having said that, I honestly don't see how it is any different then reporting entertainment news or other softball stories. Either way, all they are doing is trying to expand their market and make their program appealing and watchable (especially to the young demographic). Unfortunately, the impression I get from them is basically that they are both desperate for viewers and will report a good amount of softball news.

Would I agree to do something like that? Absolutely not. But, am I willing to label them failures at their profession for doing something most journalists do relatively often (in different ways)? No, I am not. They just made a really bad marketing decision.

But, then again, we are talking about it. And we never would have heard of them without that video.

Steve Bohnel said...

I have to disagree with you, Rachael. Sure, it is to promote their newcast, but they are playing to their audience in this day and age. This was the hit song of the summer (I write this wearing a "The Who" shirt so you can probably guess my musical tastes). Journalism is a profession about the NOW. I'll judge their newscasts when I sit down and watch them, not by their promotions. So in the end, I don't know whether they're goods newsmen and women or not. One thing I do know is that the video is hilarious.

Zach Roumaya said...

All I think about this promo is that it's just a grab for viewers and a grab for numbers and ratings. The broadcast news today, especially morning news, is becoming more and more like Access Hollywood and other entertainment news shows in that they aren't really reporting any hard news, just entertainment and lighter news.

I don't think they are behaving like journalists should, but they are behaving like the hosts of an entertainment news broadcast.

If doing something like this promo causes viewers to become more interested in what they have to say, then it definitely doesn't diminish their credibility as reporters. If this promo boosted their viewers- kudos to KUTV.

Latia Coard said...




Personally, I don't believe they did this to get more views but to entertain the audience they already had. People have an unrealistic view on Journalist; believing they should be uniformed and robotic.

While it is understood that Journalist cover serious material, it should not put limitations on having personality on air.

I also don’t see how people could take offense to the song they chose to REMIX! I find the video comical and pretty innocent. It definitely makes me curious, wanting to see more of this particular group.

This does not damage their credibility because the video does not give me any reason to question whether they do their job right or not. If anyone has ever worked in a professional field or has been involved in a professional environment will understand that there are in fact moments where it is safe to unzip that Robot costume.


Latia Coard

Paige Calter said...

From watching the video you can clearly tell that this is a promotion that is meant to boost ratings by taking a song that was well known during the summer and putting a twist on the words so that it fit the station.
I believe that regardless of their choice of advertisement, they are still going to do the job that they are getting paid to do, and that is to report the news. From the video I would guess that they are a morning news crew who isn't putting out the most serious news of the day but that is just my opinion. That being said the anchors and people reporting the news are not coming up with the promotion; the industry people behind the station are. Their only appearing in it because it is part of the job, and if they refused to take part in these promotions and other things like this it could mean their job could be put on the line.
So yes, this video sets a precedent of what the stations motivation is (to attract more viewers) but I do not think it directly reflects on the journalists themselves. The people in the video were mostly middle aged people who probably have families at home that they are providing for, not everyone can be a journalist traveling throughout the world reporting breaking news, but every journalists, regardless of their job description, needs to make a living.

Paige Grss said...

Yes, this is entertaining, and fun to watch, and certainly it is an attention-grabber, but it is a bad idea for a professional journalist to associate themselves with this very controversial song. If they claim to be the number one news station in their area, I'm not sure why they have to reach to performing a silly parody for advertisement. I think good journalism should just speak for itself.

Paige Grss said...

Yes, this is entertaining, and fun to watch, and certainly it is an attention-grabber, but it is a bad idea for a professional journalist to associate themselves with this very controversial song. If they claim to be the number one news station in their area, I'm not sure why they have to reach to performing a silly parody for advertisement. I think good journalism should just speak for itself.

Amber Conaway said...

I would not do this for my job. Being a woman dancing in this video will defiantly diminish ones credibility. That being said, I do think it was a good way to get viewers. It's a very catchy song, even my grandmother likes and knows this song!

Kushana Jenkins said...

I would definitely do this for my job. I think that this was for pure entertainment purposes, not trying to make a statement, just having a little innocent fun. In my opinion, I feel that it depends on the type of news crew that you are because reporters/journalist should be able to loosen up from time to time and not present themselves as being so stuffy. Yes you can still be professional and also show a little humor at times. It is a great way to get the audience to lighten up about all the dreadful issues going on today. Also it turned heads and got a reaction from viewers, maybe people who never viewed will now tune in. I know I would!

C. Abruzzo said...

Regardless of what we think of the video itself, it is getting us to watch the video in its entirety and talk about it. I think from an advertising stand point it is very strong and effective. It does come off as goofy or unprofessional but I feel like their intentions are to draw viewers who don't typically watch their newscast. I am not aware if other newscasts in the Salt Lake City area are doing this as well but I think it's a good way to lure people into watching them. CSN Philly made a commercial with their anchors and reporters dancing and singing to the song of "Call Me Maybe" about a year ago. They substituted the lyrics in the song with "Watch us, baby". They still continue to put a strong show on television. I think this idea also reveals a human element to journalism. Anchors are people too and the new commercial is touching on the audience to make them view the anchors in a different manner. Although it can come off as unprofessional to some people who take the news seriously, this isn't outrageous. I am fine with the idea and I don't think this commercial causes the news show to lose its credibility.

-Chris Abruzzo

Deanna Gormisky said...

I think this is fine. This sort of thing is to promote their little newscast/broadcast. They were probably told to do something outrageous and went with it. But, at the same time, they were probably thinking, "What does this say about our station?" and "Will this be enough to generate even more views?"

It's pure entertainment. Laughable entertainment.

But, personally, I'd not do such a thing for my job.

Morgan Green said...

I think that it is completely okay to have a local newscast make a video like this. It was made to gain the attention and audience of a younger crowd and was completely harmless. The whole point of the video was that the song is the #1 summer song of 2013 and it is very well-known. Entertainment journalism can be just as credible as "real journalism" if executed in the right way.

Alexa White said...

I think this may have been the most bizarre thing I have ever watched. Honestly, I am sure that it probably gained KUTV some new viewers, whether they tuned in to get hard news or laugh at them... I'm not too sure. I think that it's great if they want to do that for their job, but I don't think I could. I'm just imagining someone feeling as awkward as I did watching that, and I would prefer not to put anyone through that. However, I cannot speak for the future. If I was an aging newscaster and my job depended on it, maybe you'd catch me doing the dougie... but as of now, no.

Geo said...

My god, the last people we need to see doing the Dougie are aging newscasters.

- George
(the teacher who feels really old when you call these people "aging.")

Jordan Mayo said...

I believe that this idea was hilarious. This should not diminish their credibility as journalists one bit. This video is intended to be funny and attract viewers. I believe that the video should therefore be taken with a grain of salt. This video makes me want to watch this news cast more because of their attempt at comedy.

Ta'lor Walker said...

I think this is an effective way to promote a newscast. This commercial is a great way to bring in the younger audience and it shows us that the newscasters are not just the serious people we see on the news. I don’t think it diminishes their credibility at all, actually I find it funny seeing older people dance to their own parody of Blurred Lines and that makes me want to watch.

Phylandra McFaddin said...

I would probably do this just because it would be fun. They did this to bring in more audience and to show that not all newscasters are so serious and boring. I don't think this hurts there credibility at all. if even though, it shows that they have a good personality and are open minded.

Don McDermott said...

I would never do this. This was completely unprofessional, and I will never watch that news station now. I cannot take them seriously. Also, I feel their station must be struggling if they're resorting to such methods, so I would assume their reporting is not very good. Now, this may not be true at all, but that's the message they're sending to me with this video.

Melonie Collado said...

I thought this was absolutely hysterical! I would probably do this...I would probably bring this kind of idea to the table! I don't believe at all that this diminishes a news anchor's credibility or ability to do their job correctly. If you want to get technical, it does not interfere with any of the elements of journalism. Journalism does not need to be boring and it shouldn't be but I don't think it's a big deal considering this promotional video had nothing to do with the journalism itself. People should understand that this is simply that- a funny, light, easy-going promotional video in order to attract viewers. And to be honest, I would probably watch them after seeing this.

Jon Weaver said...

This was a good marketing tool used by the station to get people to watch. They were not messing up reporting the news and I am sure when their newscast is actually on they do a good job at reporting the news. I would do this for my job if I had to.

Mariama Mansaray said...

for me personally, the video didn't catch my attention that much. i mean it was funny, and i laughed really hard when i saw it, but that was all that happened. it didn't really made me want to watch their news broadcasting. it was like one those things in passing that you never really think about until mentioned.