March 28, 2003


TV is useful for pictures – I get the feeling sometimes this should be called Operation Stock Footage – and it’s useful for seeing retired military people draw lines on maps. . . .

The details never seem to filter into the TV reports – for all the embeddedness of the reportorial faction, I’ve yet to see a big smashing battle. The more you watch the more you realize how little you’re seeing.

Jason Kottke wrote something similar the other day:

I’ve had the TV on all afternoon, watching it while I work. Right now, I’m watching tiny pixelated people moving around on the deck of an aircraft carrier. This scene imparts absolutely no information, knowledge, or perspective to the viewer.

Meanwhile, Mr. Cranky says he hates the coverage — but, of course, he hates everything. And — at a more professional level — Martin Van Creveld says that “all the pictures shown on TV are color pieces which have no significance.”

I agree, and I’ve barely watched it. There’s more, and better news on the web. And this view transcends whether you’re pro-war or anti-war, as the quotes above illustrate. They’re just not doing a very good job.

UPDATE: Bryan Preston has some further thoughts.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Bill Hobbs points to this interesting piece on what the war coverage is hitting, and missing.

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