Day 9: The answer is right under my nose

Every person, in some way draws inspiration into their life, whether they are honest enough to admit it.  Some look toward personal heroes- mothers, celebrities, spiritual leaders.

Others nurture their determination by immersing themselves in the serenity of nature.  So many more get their “kick” each day with a cup of coffee and a few moments of silence in the car before work. I would count myself among the few who gather inspiration or motivation from every aspect of life.

A beautiful sunset, quality time with family, reflection and prayer, interaction with random “Joes”, and very subtle messages are only a few of the sources I feed upon each day.

Every day as I walk from the DART rail station to WFAA I pass in front of the Dallas Morning News building, which is next door to the studio. While I’ve paid notice to the massive inscription etched into the edifice, never before have I taken the time to consider its meaning.

The Dallas Morning News is located on the Belo campus in downtown Dallas, along with WFAA-TV and TXCN.

It so eloquently says, “Build the news upon the rock of truth and righteousness. Conduct it always upon the lines of fairness and integrity.  Acknowledge the right of the people to get from the newspaper both sides of every important question.”

What an incredible message greeting the employees of the Dallas Morning News. Each day as they approach their workplace, they are reminded of their professional mission.  Little did G.B. Dealey, long-time publisher of the Dallas Morning News, know how much journalism would evolve when he wrote these mission many years ago. Just as the newspaper and the building in which it is housed, this mission has weathered the test of time.

As I draw ideas, inspiration to succeed, and motivation to improve my life this memorial should be a way of life for today’s journalists. Tonight, I watched portions of each local newscast in Dallas. I am concerned by the amount of daily news coverage that has become sheer garbage.

While you must cover the stories that are important to the viewing community, sometimes you have to “force feed” people a small serving of vegetables. Mamma said broccoli was good for you. Even though it was stinky and mushy, you ate at least a few bites of it.

Journalists should stop pandering to the mindless wants of the everyday viewer. Are we dumbing down society? I think we are doing detriment to society, spending valuable air time covering the downfall of humanity as interpreted by Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, and Brittany Spears.

Wake up America, have we forgotten that men and women die each day fighting for us in Iraq and Afghanistan. Have we forgotten about the growing economy? Who is covering the triumphs of humanity? If you want to hear about the harem of Hollywood has-beens, turn to Access Hollywood or Entertainment Tonight, where it belongs.

Conservation groups have banded together to save our streams and trees through groups called N.I.M.B.Y., or Not In My Back Yard. I think we as journalists should reaffirm our commitment to the people and form a quasi-activist group “Not In My Newscast.” Our news coverage should be a healthy balance of all the food groups, not the most depressing 30 minutes on television.

Today I spent time with David Schechter in the field. His story, which will air tomorrow, has the potential to become a national story. Most of my readers, adults and college students have a small connection to this story. Of course, I can’t give any details yet, but tomorrow’s post will have a full explanation.

The main source we interviewed today confirmed that no other television stations had contacted him about this story. I wanted to spend time working on interviewing skills, so fortunately, today’s subjects were the perfect situation to watch and learn. David explained to me that you must establish a level of trust as quickly as possible, or risks losing a good source. You must help the interviewee feel relaxed, especially if the surrounding may make the person uneasy.

We also worked on more research for the “big project” later in the year.

Last week’s story that aired tonight was about children who are missing out on traditional childhood experiences because of addictions to online games like World of Warcraft. We interviewed a 13-year-old who plays the game for 17 hour periods, his mother, and a friend who recently quit playing. The teen, who agrees the game interferes with his everyday life, is planning to quit before summer’s end. His friend already quit a few months ago, and has seen a dramatic improvement in his quality of life.

I have seen the effects of games like World of Warcraft.  Several classmates have become caught up in this game, resulting in their failing of classes and dropping out of school. I suppose that similar to other life experiences, anything can be okay within moderation. Watch the story by clicking here.

There are roughly 12 other interns at Channel 8, who were selected from over 150 applicants. It will be fun getting to know many of them over the coming weeks. I plan to discuss course curriculum,  student media opportunities, and prior experiences to gain an understanding of how Northwestern State University stacks up against larger schools.

Already, I have gotten to know Chris Ghanbari, Morgan Parmet, Bonnie Moon,  and Tim Johnston, who all seem like very capable journalists.

Again, thank you so much for your continued readership. I’m looking to expand upon my daily postings, so feel free to leave a comment about what you’d like to see more of.  “Good Night and Good Luck” -Edward R. Murrow

The views expressed in this blog do not necessarily reflect the views of the corporation and employees of WFAA-TV, Belo Corp., or Northwestern State University. They are solely the opinion of the author. All content © Copyright 2007 Lane Luckie


One Comment Add yours

  1. Geof says:

    Very fun post, i Sent my response on facebook to you. I figured it might be too agressive for a comment, but remember its in good fun. You know i like to debate haha! Anywho, Can you please find out some of the craziest stories the people you are working with have covered, or if they have any funny bloopers….You KNOW those are our favorite things to hear about! Like our favorite cockroach man! HAHA!
    Take lots of random pictures and have a good day!


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