No...the worst part is our local TV news. These days, our network affiliates will use almost any excuse, it seems, to keep the local news on the air--as if St. Louis isn't already suffering from news overload. The CBS affiliate, KMOV, has local news from 5:00-7:00am, noon-12:30pm, 5:00-5:30pm, 6:00-6:30pm and 10:00-10:35pm. The worst offender, KSDK (our NBC affiliate) has local news from 4:00-7:00am, noon-1:00pm, 4:00-6:30pm and 10:00-10:35pm. Our ABC and Fox affiliates aren't so bad.
When we have snow--even those "events" not qualifying as snowstorms--KMOV and KSDK immediately preempt all regular programming to keep local news on the air to provide nonstop, repetitive accounts of every flake that falls. We get to see their armies of reporters stationed throughout the metropolitan area, letting us know it's snowing. Like we can't see that for ourselves! This reminds me of my dad's reaction to televised Presidential speeches. He always said the American people must be perceived as stupid, because after every speech, reporters came on to explain to us what the President had said.
Last week alone, KSDK preempted part of the Today Show at least three times--twice for snow coverage (once for a snowfall of a mere 2-3 inches!) and once to cover an accident on the interstate. KMOV preempted The Young and the Restless for snow coverage at a critical point in the soap opera's storyline--which sent regular viewers scrambling to KMOV's Facebook page to complain.
Don't get me wrong--I can see the need for continuous news coverage of major events. A snowstorm that affects travel, causes power outages and threatens public safety requires keeping us informed--but a news alert at the top of each hour would do that quite well. It's not like a dangerous thunderstorm, where conditions change minute by minute and warrant keeping the public updated as it happens. As for serious accidents on our highways, yes, we need to know--but again, a brief interruption at the top of the hour would do that.
I wonder if newspeople have clauses in their contracts that guarantee them a specific amount of on-air time that makes their bosses interrupt our TV viewing for no valid reason. Those who don't have cable, satellite or streaming must find it particularly annoying.
I miss the good old days...when there were only two daily local newscasts (6:00 and 10:00) and "Breaking News" meant something really important had happened.
Be sure to check out William's blog for a behind-the-scenes look at Russian wannabe-czar--I mean President--Vlad "The Impaler" Putin at the Sochi Olympics, and our joint blog for a snippet of Same Time Tomorrow (I promise, it will get finished)! Also check out PK Hrezo's blog for details on her Butterman (Time) Travel, Inc. blog tour and Cheryl Dale's blog announcing her new book (which has a cover by Collin)!