Saturday, September 3, 2011
Al Sharpton is hosting the 6PM slot on MSNBC. I heard an interview on NPR with a black journalist in which the premise was, "why Sharpton and not a black journalist?". Although the discussion went on for about five minutes, the answer was given in the first minute of the piece. Ratings were up 18% during Rev. Sharpton's trial period in the slot. And ratings -- read "profit" -- are the name of the game, not good news reporting and analysis. It's the same reason we see people buying wedding dresses -- people watch it. You can dress it up all you want, but ratings are the name-of-the-game in broadcasting because profits are the name-of-the-game in business and broadcasters are profit-driven enterprises.