News Roundup for 5/6/10

Oscar statue
White House Correspondents Dinner, according to Politico

-Headline of the day-
"84 Stories."

Remember how you couldn't wait to find out who said what at the White House Correspondents' Dinner? Remember how you waited breathlessly to find out what all the ladies wore, what Jay Leno said, who showed up with who, what the chefs laid out for the gathered journalistic luminaries, and whether Roger Ailes accidentally ate Maureen Dowd because she got too close to his plate? Remember that?

No? There's a couple of interrelated reasons for that: these people aren't the celebrities they think they are and you know this, so you don't give a rat's ass. It's like reading about the prom at a school you never went to. What do you care?

But this widespread lack of giving a damn didn't stop Politico from running 84 separate stories about the big reporter prom. "The DC press should be embarrassed to be seen by the whole world as giggling school girls but they aren't," writes rational blogger Digby. "They actually think people like this stuff --- they covered it like it was the Oscars and they were the stars."

Now I like Digby and I think he's usually right on the money. Just not this time. Politico didn't give the dinner wall-to-wall coverage because they think they're all stars, they did it because they know they aren't -- but they want to be. It's free advertising. If Larry King can make Entertainment Tonight -- despite the fact that he's not really entertaining -- then what's to stop the good folks at Politico from cashing in the same way?

You may not care now, but if they get their way, they'll make you care. (Hullabaloo)

-Case in point-
The Pew Center for the People and the Press takes a look at what everyone wants to know and compares it with what the media is reporting. There have been lots of stories this week; you've got your big oil spill and Arizona losing their freakin' minds and Goldman Sachs testifying before Congress. You've also got an election in the UK that threatens (OK, is almost certain) to throw the ruling Labour Party out of power for the first time in more than a decade. This is happening today.

So are people actually interested in this historic election? Not really. Given a choice between news about the election and news about Sandra Bullock's screwed up marriage, we the American people would rather hear screwed up marriage news. And there's a reason for that. According to Pew, "About seven-in-ten Americans have heard at least a little about actress Sandra Bullock's plans to divorce her husband and her recent adoption of a baby boy: 31% say they have heard a lot about these developments and 40% say they have heard a little."

Meanwhile, "6% say they heard a lot about the [UK] elections, while 31% say they heard a little. More than six-in-ten (63%) say they heard nothing at all about this." See, this is because what Sandra Freakin' Bullock does with her life is so much more important than a radical shift in the geopolitical landscape. The ruling Labour Party never won an Oscar.

Then again, neither has Politico. But they're working on it. (Pew)

-Bonus HotD-
"Gibbs: No One In White House Supports Lieberman's Citizenship Bill."

That's because no one in the White House is an idiot. (Huffington Post)

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