Archive for December 14th, 2009

‘Old fashion journalism’ at core of success

Monday, December 14th, 2009
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We were skeptical when we saw that TV Week had named TMZ.com its Internet Site of the Year but, regardless of the subject matter, it’s hard to argue once founder Harvey Levin explains what the celebrity gossip and entertainment news sites does.

“We do old fashion journalism. With Tiger Woods, we came in during the Thanksgiving weekend. I don’t know how many other reporters were working, but we were working 18-hour days. And we were working the telephones. We were basically assembling a lot of information that ultimately led to a lot of stories. We did that with Michael Jackson, we did it with Mel Gibson, we did it with Anna Nicole Smith. At its core, we try and develop sources who will trust us, and who will talk to us. I think the business has been based on trust and on just beating the bushes as in old fashioned journalism. I’ve done this for many years. I’ve been a journalist for decades. And that’s the core of it.

“… I’ve been in this town for almost 30 years working as a journalist. And I’ve got a lot of contacts. And I use them. And other people on my staff have developed them too. We work really hard. At five o’clock, everybody doesn’t say, oh I’m going home. And I think, whether you want to believe it or not, it makes all the difference in the world.”

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Broadcasters, legislators say ‘turn that down’

Monday, December 14th, 2009

Spurred by legislation making its way through Congress, broadcasters are working to modulate the volume of television commercials, which too often are much louder than the programs they interrupt, the San Jose Mercury News said Sunday.

Rep. Anna Eshoo, a Democrat from Palo Alto, has introduced  a bill, which could come to the House floor for a vote as soon as this week, that would force broadcasters to modulate the volume of ads, the newspaper said. Last week, Democrats Sheldon Whitehouse  of Rhode Island and Chuck Schumer of New York introduced companion legislation in the Senate.

The Advanced Television Systems Committee, a body that sets technical standards for digital television, has devised a set of guidelines, and Eshoo recently amended her bill to effectively make them law and direct the FCC to enforce them.