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PBS gets capital coverage - Broadcasting & Cable

PBS gets capital coverage

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A judge in Harris County, Texas, has agreed to allow PBS' Frontline to film a capital murder trial, including jury
deliberations.

PBS was not commenting beyond saying that the case was "on hold" and that it
would put out a statement later Tuesday, but The New York Times was
reporting that the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals had suspended jury selection
in the trial while it considered the prosecution's appeal of the TV-in-the-jury
room decision.

The Radio-Television News Directors Association is on the record as saying
that cameras belong in the courtroom, but it does not extend that assertion to the jury
room.

Still, RTNDA president Barbara Chochran sees potential
educational value.

Pointing out that this would be for documentary purposes rather than live
news coverage, she said the country has "a serious problem with jury service in
terms of a reluctance to serve and lack of training."

A documentary, she added, might "better help them understand what goes on by
demystifying the process." That, she said, "could be helpful to the judicial
system."

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