Pardon My Interruption

I am watching my Sunday night television show and suddenly that door bell sound interrupts my programming. The bottom of my screen reads **President Obama is expected to make an important statement to the nation.** As this message scrolls across my screen over and over again, my journalistic attitude take hold. I leap on to my computer and search “Obama important statement.” Google search gives me nothing except for old news. I go to Google News and receive an AP report that says that President Barack Obama is expected to make that announcement from the White House late Sunday night and that it is highly unusual that the president would make a late-night statement with not even a hint about what he would discuss.

I learned nothing from this statement and actually grew anxious.

I begin to get frustrated since my television show has been interrupted with a special report and yet I have no idea what President Obama plans to talk about at 10:30pm EST. I keep refreshing my favorite news sites and still nothing about the topic of the speech.

Finally eleven minutes after the 10:30pm time frame, my television flashes a NBC News Special Report that begins to discuss the late night statement. After a very wordy introduction, the bottom of my screen states “President Obama Announces A Major Development in Osama bin Laden.” I am a little less anxious, but am still unsure of the information. I refresh my browsers and yet I get the same information I already knew.

Finally, NBC New Special Report states that Osama bin Laden is dead. I refresh my browser–articles begin to appear about Osama Bin Laden’s death. These article are not from the New York Times or the Associated Press, but bloggers. I wait about two minutes refresh my browser and begin to receive AP, Fox News, ABC and New York Times articles. I finally felt informed and confident in the information I had received.

This situation brought into question the immediacy of the Internet. I would not have expected television news to break a story before the Internet. What happened to the Internet being the first one to report? I also realized that I have a flaw. I have been brought up in the information and technology age where immediacy is a part of my culture and desire. I want the news right now and I want it to be full of detailed and accurate information. Unfortunately, that’s not always possible and the Internet isn’t always the first to break the news–I know shocking!