I am reading more and more articles these days about what the depressed state of newspapers will or won’t do for television.  This article, from Broadcasting and Cable, shows what a few TV stations are doing to try to take some of the money newspapers are losing.

Then there is this article from Variety.  It focuses on the Los Angeles TV market to show how stations have had to make some drastic cuts to deal with our new budget realities.  The writer also tied into his article what the end of newspapers will do to TV stations.  Here’s one of the lines:

“‘Rip and read’ has long been employed to fill out newscasts, using local papers as tip sheets and unpaid newswriters.”

I have worked at 6 different TV stations.  It’s been true that newspapers often have stories TV newsrooms do not, largely because newsroom reporting staffs used to dwarf TV newsrooms.  BUT, it is also true, that TV newsrooms also break a lot of big stories that, frankly, most newspapers ignore for some reason.  Newspapers do not always set the news agenda in a community.  And I’m not sure what he means by unpaid newswriters; we confirm our own information and write our own stories.  I’ll be the first to admit we do not have every story first in West Michigan.  If someone else breaks it and it’s important to our customers, we’ll either get it confirmed or, if we can’t, quote the news source it came from.

I needed to set Variety’s report straight.  And I quoted them.