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The Malaysian Airlines Mystery

Sunday, April 6, 2014

When is enough, enough? Surely, lots of network news editors and executives have asked this question about their coverage on missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370. But, by the looks of the reporting for the past month, maybe they haven’t. 



If you have access to 24-hour-news, specifically of the American variety, you might be inclined to think there is basically just one story in the entire world. And since March 8, that one story has been that missing plane. Sure, there might have been other news: an earthquake here and there, or some dust-up involving Crimea, but for the most part, the vast resources of network television hosts, reporters, producers, guests, analysts, experts, pundits, and graphics have revolved around MH370.


And at the beginning, how could anyone blame them? It’s a sensational story. How does something the size of a plane disappear? And why? And who did it? So you launch an all out assault on the story. Covering every inch of it, and describing every tiny incremental development as “breaking news.” And while the missing plane is a gold mine of a story for a 24-hour-news network, it’s hard to keep it going when after a while there is very little “news” to speak of. But somehow they found a way.


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