Crash Prank Reveals How Corporate Media Reads Mindlessly from Teleprompter Scripts

Posted: July 14, 2013 in media
July 13, 2013

It’s another example of how mindless and untrustworthy the corporate media is. Yesterday, a news anchor at a San Francisco Bay Fox affiliate, KTVU, read the supposed names of the flight crew of Asiana flight 214, which crashed last Saturday at San Francisco International Airport. The names – “Sum Ting Wong,” “Wi Tu Lo,” “Ho Lee Fuk,” and “Bang Ding Ow” – are obviously fake, but the clueless anchor, reading straight from the screen of her teleprompter, didn’t pick up on the joke.

The incident created a media firestorm with accusations of racism leveled at the Fox station. The station quickly apologized and said it received the names from the Transportation Safety Board. The NTSB then issued a statement saying “a summer intern acted outside the scope of his authority when he erroneously confirmed the names of the flight crew on the aircraft” and promised that appropriate actions will be taken to make sure “such a serious error is not repeated.”

The real story here, however, has little to do with government ineptitude or racism. It has to do with the fact the corporate media and its groomed and coiffured talking heads read from scripts. Much of what passes for news is in fact propaganda read directly from corporate and governmental scripts. The Edward R. Murrow style reportage is a thing of the past.

It looks like the Fox affiliate may fire the anchor. But why? She was simply doing her job – faithfully reading a script like practically every other news anchor in the country. If the Bay TV station plans to fire her, just about every other television news station in the country should follow suit and show their script readers the door too.


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