With so much going on in Hamilton (over-hyped blizzard not withstanding) we had a packed show and covered an interesting range of issues. The Pan Am deal (nice to even type those words in spite of how uninspiring the actual outcome is), People vs US Steel rally, study results regarding downtown etc.
What we didn’t talk about to my frustration, was the uprising in Egypt. The reason given by our uber producer Mike Cameron before the show was solid - it doesn’t meet the mandate for hyper local programming.
After the show taped we all went to Froast (the tribute roast to mayor Fred that powergroup produced and will be airing on cable 14 this Saturday at 5 pm).
It was a great night, and in the words of Mark Chamberlain, an exorcism for all us (city leaders) on Pan Am. Lots of big laughs and political intrigue.
After Froast, as is our custom at Powergroup after any event we run, we celebrate with our close friends and crew.
Mike and I got into a discussion again about the uprising in Egypt and why it wasn’t on the show lineup. We are both pretty passionate about tv production, the nature of news, public affairs and what makes Cable 14 great local tv. This wasn’t our first lengthy debate about content and won’t be our last (I hope - one of the reasons I’ve always loved doing tv is working with informed and opinionated people).
My argument to Mike was that the role that social media has played in the Egyptian situation - the power and speed it has given people to unite and rise up for a common goal - has local ramifications.
We are all on Facebook or Twitter or online every day. The internet has made the world smaller and peoples’ dreams bigger.
Distance is irrelevant if communication is instantaneous.
As nation after nation in north Africa use social media to potentially become democracies what does it say about our own democratic process? Will our elections continue to fail to engage us and rely on traditional media? Or will social media savvy tip the balance of power?
Mike and I will continue our spirited debates about what constitutes a story that impacts Hamiltonians (as the producer the show topics are his decision.)
What do you think? Should we have talked about it on the show with all the other hyper local stories? Should we address provincial, national or global stories that in some way impact our lives in Hamilton? Let me know and I promise I’ll tell Mike.