The Wilson Watch is back from its summer hiatus, and I find my self embroiled in a bit of controversy over our coverage of the JonBenet Ramsey story.
Many of you have written in echoing the sentiments of Clifton of Woodburn, Oregon, who asks: “Why in the world is the media giving this narcissistic, self-absorbed individual so much attention? Of the many newsworthy things going on around the world, this has to be the bottom of the barrel of items of interest. What's next, fun and games in the psycho ward?”
Well, Clifton, it was my call to play the story prominently on Saturday and Sunday. Let me say that we think a great deal about story placement and coverage. I personally thought we hit the right balance. It was one of about a dozen major stories we tried to squeeze into our two-hour broadcast. Still, you may wonder why I thought this was newsworthy of our attention. Fair question.
I was traveling last week while this story was developing in Thailand and listened with great interest when I overheard people talking about the Ramsey case. It never failed to generate intense discussion. It was the thing that people were talking about. Everyone had an opinion about John Mark Karr.
I could spend hours discussing what news is and is not. But when you have an event that generates so much discussion and interest, then we have an obligation to report on it.
There is also a phenomenon that occurs with saturation news coverage of some stories: People complain of overkill. But there is irrefutable evidence that that they watch in great numbers.
That said, you can be sure that it is never in our best interest to drive viewers away. We listen and make adjustments as needed.
That is why you should never hesitate to write the Weekend Live team (firstname.lastname@example.org). We monitor the show e-mail account and as many of you know, I often respond personally to viewers with interesting things to say. Keep the dialogue going. It helps us do better work.
Also, thanks very much to our viewers who have written to say they are praying for our colleagues, Steve and Olaf. Much appreciated.
See you this weekend.
“Weekend Live” hosted by Brian Wilson airs 12 – 2 p.m. ET on Saturdays and Sundays.
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Brian Wilson is a congressional correspondent for FOX News and anchor of the Sunday edition of "Weekend Live."