When YouTube and video websites became popular, TV networks, Hollywood, and the powers that be warned us all how “consumer” or user-generated video would bring down quality, lower journalistic and legal standards, and bring on the apocalypse. Ironically, it is the powers that be that continue to lower their own imaginary standards and make web video producers like me look like the adults here.
Fox News’ anti-Obama video (above), besides being questionable for its motivation, has been shown to contain video that is several weeks old while implying that it’s from the 2008 campaign. By political standards this is a minor offense. Oopsie. By journalistic standards, it’s a bigger offense that could result in a producer or two being fired. The biggest problem is why Fox News is campaigning against the president or anyone. But they’ve been doing that since Day One so it’s a moot point.
The public’s concern should be that the so-called “legitimacy” and “quality” the TV news networks brag about is virtually non-existent even as they malign the work of independent websites and producers. Fox News hastened the demise of network news’ credibility and has done a pretty good job of destroying local news’ as well. It took both a lot of effort and none to demolish the integrity of a once-proud and meaningful industry. Speaking for myself and all independent video producers, I only wish they’d stop trying to bring the rest of us down with them.