TV or not TV: The Robert Blake Trial

Apr 19, 2002 by Ian Evans

If you were anywhere near a TV last night, you know that Robert Blake was arrested for his wife’s murder.

CNN changed the topic for Aaron Brown’s Newsnight to the breaking story, rather than covering what they had been working on, a look at how close Bush’s White House is to Big Oil.

Brown seemed a little pained to be covering this story. As he pointed out, there were headlines about a possible change in US policy in the Middle East and the story about Canadian troops killed by “friendly fire” from a US F-16. “On any other night,” Brown said, “these would have been the lead stories.”

Why weren’t they? I thought serious news shows were beginning to cover serious news after 9/11 and here we appear to be gearing up for CNN covering the Blake trial live.

I’m all for E!, ET, Access and yes, Digital Hit, headlining the Blake trial now and then, but entertainment’s our beat. Of course CNN and the network news shows should have news on the progress of the trial, but please, no gavel to gavel coverage.

There are a lot of issues in the world that hard news shows should be throwing their resources at. This really isn’t one of them.