By David Poland firstname.lastname@example.org
Can We Go Any Lower?
I just became aware that Entertainment Tonight Online… a Paramount-owned business… is running an EXCLUSIVE “last photo of Michael Jackson.” He is on a stretcher with a breathing bag taped to his face.
In their haste to publish this EXCLUSIVE, did it occur to him that the man was most likely as dead at that moment as he was when he was finally pronounced an hour or two later?
We know, last I checked, that he was in cardiac arrest and not breathing when the paramedics got to his rented house. We can tap dance around the pronounced time all we want, but I have seen zero indication that he was ever alive in any way other than semantic at that time.
Shall we look forward to more EXCLUSIVE photos of the corpse?
And by the way… all the media drooling over TMZ calling him dead first… is anyone actually thinking about this? The guy was dead before he arrived at the hospital. All TMZ did was to announce without the kind of confirmation that journalists consider legitimate. And had he miraculously been revived, all the gossip rag would have been accused of was jumping the gun… they have no journalistic credibility at stake. And yet, the media marvels are whoever said it FIRST!
Who is responsible for the degradation of the news? We are ALL responsible…. but especially Old Media outlets where the highest standards are supposed to be held and are often forgotten when dazzled by the speed of new media… until the porous standards of much of new media fail journalism and old media starts kicking the entire medium for the crime.