Your Tube


Here is an interesting question for new age journalists. Does an airing on YouTube break an embargo or, more generally, affect editorial calls on what is and isn't appropriate for air.

Case in point the cell phone video of Saddam's hanging.

Traditional networks did not show it, while it popped up on so-called social networks on the Internet alongside exploding Mentos and holiday greetings from "Bubby."

There is a certain decorum or propriety or some such word for what the networks do when they decide what momnents should be cut away from. But there is no comparable insitutional buffer for video on shared cites. In fact, this generation may hear opining for that lack of buffer and, instead, detect the cry of the dinosaur with its foot stuck in the tar pits as it attempts to hold the ground on which it has built its news sinecure of yesteryear.

Will broadcast and cable journalists be forced to make new calls about what they do and don't show based on their monitoring of YouTube hits?–somewhere north of three quarter of a million for the death video on YouTube alone.

I don't know what outlets the Project for Excellence in Journalism plans to monitor for its new ongoing content analysis of news sources, but viral news freed from the constraints of assignment editors and other news executives bears close watching to see how much rubs off on the vets with the green eyeshades.

By John Eggerton