MTV News Virginia Tech coverage & The nature of “instant” reporting

Posted on April 17, 2007. Filed under: Uncategorized |

I sent an email to production/editorial that looked something like this a few minutes ago…

**At 10:54pm, this show was updated with the third and final segment of the MTV News Presents: Voices From Virginia live report.**

Show Title: Voices from Virginia

Show Description: See VT students talk with Sway and John Norris on the Blacksburg campus, a timeline of events and how people reacted online.

1 — The Virginia Tech Tragedy
2 — VT Students Share Their Pain
3 — The Online Reaction


I did have something lengthy to say about my experience contributing to MTV News’ coverage of the Virginia Tech shooting and aftermath.  I kept it in my head all day, but now that I am finally able to relax, all I want to do is go home and sleep.

Brief Brain Sputters

… I saw a report on CNN that used MySpace profiles to provide details on the dead victims. I thought this was beyond creepy. Imagine – your MySpace profile used as an obit.

… For our report/interview with misidentified shooter Wayne Chiang, I had to search online for current photos of him.

His Livejournal Account –  Facebook Photo Gallery

I wonder, will future journalism classes include information on best practices in online tracking of leads from citizen journalists, finding current photos, identifying threads? I bet they will. The times, they are a changing.

Tomorrow, hopefully I (and the rest of my coworkers) can react to what happened as individuals. By that I mean, be able to find time to privately grieve and process it all like everyone else. This is my first time  helping to cover a tragedy like this, and there was a moment today where the thought flashed briefly that I just didn’t have time to feel anything. I wonder how others in similar roles deal – Probably in the same way. You get the job done – get the story/package/photo published – and then, later, you can grieve.

Edit: While rushing from one end of the newsroom to the other, the most random thing happened that (because of what was going on today) I couldn’t even appreciate. I hear a familiar voice, look up, and who is in the hallway with me? Snoop Dogg. It was too much for me – My mind immediately went blank and I scooted around him to locate the senior producer to ask him my question.


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One Response to “MTV News Virginia Tech coverage & The nature of “instant” reporting”

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the worst think is that disasters like this are so frequent in the tv like basket, football. so, nobody takes so much care whether no directly affected…

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