The New York Times on CNN’s Haiti Wardrobe
Immediately following the earthquake in Haiti, the 24-hour cable news channels dispatched their battalions of field reporters to cover the aftermath. And that’s a good thing. Because without journalists reporting from the scene of a disaster, the world wouldn’t be able to get a firm grasp on how bad it actually is. And without that coverage, aid would be slower to roll in.
But The New York Times points out that the coverage of the Haiti earthquake, especially on CNN, has been different than disaster coverage in the past. Specifically in a visual sense:
“Viewers who watched CNN’s earthquake coverage this last week were bound to be struck by correspondents who looked a lot less like the usual disheveled examples of those in the profession than like bendable action figures.”
Sex sells and when someone goes on TV the world can obviously see them. During the last decade, a priority has been placed on physical attractiveness in television journalism. And now it’s causing problems.
Because when Ken and Barbie go into the field, no matter how serious or bleak the subject matter, they apparently can’t turn off the pheromones. Or at least wear clothes that don’t show off their well sculpted TV ready bodies.
We’ve seen inappropriate attire on Journalists before. But how do they decided what to wear? What shouldn’t they wear? Does it matter? Not all of the answers are clear. But I think it’s safe to say that if your shirt could double as under-armour, it’s probably not appropriate.