Local broadcast news knows America better than cable
JAMES K. GLASSMAN, THE HILL
In a digital age, local broadcast TV is the great sleeper medium, and it’s waking up nicely. Variety, the entertainment trade journal, wrote last month that the local TV chains will benefit from their “heft in the heartland regions that have taken on new importance in the media world following the election of Donald Trump as president.”
A study by the Pew Research Center in 2015 found that TV attracts more residents than any other local news source. That’s may not be a big surprise, but in a survey released last month, Pew found that local TV ranked number-four among voters asked what was their “main source” for news about the 2016 campaign. Fox News was first, followed by CNN, Facebook, and then local TV, which ranked ahead of MSNBC, NBC, ABC, CBS, and national and local newspapers. And local TV news enjoyed support from voters for both Hillary Clinton (ranking fourth) and for Donald Trump (fifth). Fox News, by contrast, was 11th among Clinton voters and first among Trump voters.
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We live in an age where technology and creativity are intersecting in ways like we have never seen before. The constant advent of new methods to create, record and distribute one’s own songs has allowed countless new artists to express themselves to the world in sharing their music and their words. People are discovering new talent in ways never thought of 10 years ago and new generations are being exposed to those who came before them with ease and access that my generation didn’t know growing up. (Can you remember hearing an album for the first time and then not being able to find it in a store? Today it’s a click away.)
Of course, as new technology comes in so much of our old technology goes out. They become museum pieces, like an 8-track or a Betamax. But some old technologies never go away. They are mainstays of our life, so embedded in the fabric of our daily routines that to forgo or replace them would seem not only distressing but confusing -- as in, “Why would I want to?”
A perfect example: radio.