by David Phinney
Sunday October 21st 2018

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Corporate Branding is Everything in the News Biz

The soul searching was apparently wrenching and airing the video sparked an agonizing debate at the highest executive levels of NBC.

“It’s not every day we get a story like this. We went over it for seven and a half hours. We didn’t rush it on the air. We weren’t promoting it. We weren’t trumpeting it all day. It was extraordinary, and that’s how we treated it.” — Steve Capus, President of NBC News, comments to the New York Times

But when the day was done, NBC decided to let loose its cache of video and photos from the man identified as a mass killer at Virgnia Tech. Cho Seung-Hui mailed his bundle of madness to NBC the day put a bullet to his head and 31 were left dead
Airing the material does benefit the public’s understanding of the madness that ran through Cho’s tortured life. But while NBC is one of the best U.S. broadcast operations around, why did NBC’s coporate culture insist on putting its corporate logo on every photo and video?
Marketing and Promotion?
For what? To advertise that it is the news outlet of choice for psychopaths?
Bad taste. Very bad taste. It’s not as though NBC risked all on the battlefield to get these documents. During a national tragedy like this, fair use should prevail. But when viewer ratings are down and the news media is going through historic upheaval, unfortunatley, it all comes down to branding the story with a business logo: NBC.

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