Thursday, October 09, 2008

Financial coverage varies between broadcasters

Broadcasters have switched much of their coverage to business news in the wake of the financial crisis. Normally the reserve of business channels like Bloomberg, a rolling ticker showing market data has been added to Sky News. The ticker is in addition to the usual rolling news ticker and clock that sits at the bottom of the screen. Sky has also been showing a small information box at the top left of the screen updating viewers with the ups and downs of the FTSE and Dow Jones. CNN has also added a small info-box updating viewers with the current level of the Dow Jones, though its use has been intermittent. The BBC, Russia Today, France 24 and Al Jazeera have not adopted such information straps and CCTV-9, rarely one to show rolling news has continued with regular broadcasting throughout the economic slump.

As for coverage of events, this has varied again from one broadcaster to another. Tuesday’s calmer markets resulted in many station to reduce their business coverage and report on other stories or return to regular programming. Sky has provided a great deal of in depth analysis, along with the BBC and CNN. But there have been missed opportunities. While the BBC were covering a press conference given by the Icelandic Prime Minister today, neither CNN or Sky gave over LIVE coverage to the event. It was a similar story when the former CEO of Lehman Bros, Dick Fuld, was grilled in the US. This was only shown on Bloomberg and Sky News. Neither the BBC or CNN were on the ball with this event.
To expect some of the other news broadcasters, RT, France 24, CCTV-9 and Euronews, to have a grip on the ever changing story was perhaps asking a bit too much, but even al-Jazeera has failed viewers, in general terms, in its coverage of events.

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