‘Boys on the Bus’: Bus Buzz

Did you miss part 1 of the series? Click here for that. This is based on Peter Hamby’s article (warning… REALLY LONG).

The same caveats apply but let’s jump right back in.

James David Barber makes an excellent point: “Campaign managers complain that their man is not taken at face value, but they do not really want that to happen, because mystery is a prime element in charisma” — the unfortunate part of this is that campaigns want to win more than they want to spread the truth (although they would prefer to both, if possible).

I find it slightly depressing that candidates have responded to the explosion of coverage (from the TV, Internet, twitter and so on) with a “shut it down” model to be really sad — I wish the public and the media were able to let some of the silly gaffes go.

The bills of the bus

Glad that Hamby points out that “The Boys on the Bus” book was not meant as an ideal … the thought was these reporters were way too close.

$10,000 a week to put a reporter on the bus!? I’m now surprised that so many newspapers still do it. If a newspaper had good freelancers (in different parts of the country) and could spend the time figuring out travel/hotel then they could get the coverage much cheaper. I’m glad that the The Washington Post, The New York Times, Yahoo! News and Buzzfeed all set a note to the Romney campaign noting this.

$55,000 for TV networks for a crew of five to cover Romney? Networks need to cut down on the crew.

Getting away from the economics — I’m not surprised that campaigns have devalued magazines. Readership is down and I doubt that “swing voters” dive into Time in their free time.

The buzz on the bus

Ben Smith acknowledging that the reporters he sent on the Romney bus had a “gap” in knowledge and writing skills is damning. If you are a print/web writer and don’t have knowledge or writing skills then you have no business in the big leagues (which Buzzfeed is probably in).

I really enjoyed the comparison between CNN.com and Buzzfeed editing roughly the same story (under five min for it to be up on Buzzfeed, over a half hour for CNN). This is a difference in philosophies, Buzzfeed wants it up — if they need to make a change later they will — CNN.com wants it right and to their standards.

Standards vs. Time is a debate that goes on in newsroom across the world and it should — I have no right answer (and would be very suspicious of anyone who did) but it’s worth discussing (even if you don’t have a good answer).

Top Romney advisor: “If I had to pick three words to characterize the embeds, it would be young, inexperienced and angry.” “Their first journalistic assignment was being given a camera and sent on the plane of a presidential candidate. It’s remarkable. They have no formal or practical reporting experience.”

I’m not sure what he means by “formal” experience? Is he referring to J-School (which is mostly a waste of time, in my opinion)? Or is he talking about a mentorship (which is absolutely NOT a waste of anyones time)?

“For an ambitious 20-something willing to sacrifice his or her personal life for a year or longer—and risk gaining a few pounds along the way—it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

A few month of pain for the shot of getting a better job in the future — is it any wonder why after you “make it” you don’t want to go back?

Photographers need to get a grip, if people with shitty cameras (“weenie cams”) can get as good of a shot (or even close) as you can you are doing it wrong (and you might be surprised how often that happens).

The young and the sleepless

Chuck Todd: “You have to be single”

I’ll absolutely buy that, it’s really hard to cede your personal life and work 60+ hour weeks, be away from home and still be happy (it can be done but it takes a special kind of crazy).

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~ by realfactsandbeer on September 7, 2013.

One Response to “‘Boys on the Bus’: Bus Buzz”

  1. […] This is the third part of this series… here is a link to the first part and here is the second part. […]

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