Pope: Cable News Is “Always There” As Viewers Drift In & Out Of The Vigil

By Brian 

The Daily Doubter asks: “Is the imminent death of an 84 year old man whose health has been failing for years now really a story that merits a moratorium on all other news?” The short answer is yes, pretty much. In an e-mail to TVNewser, a cable news executive explains the theory:

“What observers like Slate’s Stevens overlook is that cable news is not meant to be watched continuously. On a breaking story like this, especially on a weekend, people drift in and out as they move through their lives. It’s important that when people turn to cable news, we bring them up to date quickly, and then give them context and nuance and strong reportage. It’s this ‘always there’ aspect during stories like the Pope or Schiavo or during periods of national emergency that distinguishes cable from its broadcasting brethren. Cable’s mission isn’t more important or more trivial than other journalistic mediums — it is just different.”

> Jeff Jarvis: “The cable networks have the big story all the time so that we can get it anytime.”