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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

What's interesting?


Choosing stories for your newscast is one of the most difficult responsibilities of a producer. Some days you luck out and things just fall into place. But other days, you may be stuck with a lot of important news, and you have to make the tough decision to choose what should be first. I find LA to be a very, very hard city to choose story order for. This city is run on entertainment, so stories like Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan are huge around here. However, the turmoil in Libya and Egypt are much more important in the real world scheme of things. But does the audience care? It’s our jobs as journalists to report what’s important, but I’m finding it more difficult now to make that decision: report on what I think is important or what my audience wants to hear.

When I was lead producing, I was very lucky as to how my stories fell in place. The Somali pirates had killed the American couple and rescue efforts from LA were going to help victims of the New Zealand earthquake. Both very important, and interesting stories. The rundown yesterday also fell into place because all the election coverage fit nicely together. Sometimes I find the “B” block (the second part of the show) to be the most difficult in ordering. Some stories are important, but you just don’t have time to put them in the top of your show. You may want to put them at the beginning of the “B” block, but they fit in better with stories later on in the “B” block. But somehow, someway, it always seems to come together. All in a day’s work.


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