It was a bizarre end to a bizarre life.
However, I am not here to eulogize the life of Anna Nicole Smith. Instead, I wish to write about a certain media channel’s coverage, that I found to be a bit disturbing.
Most newspapers, television and radio stations, gave Smith’s death a respectful amount of coverage. You either had an 800-1000 word article or a standard 2-3 minute news piece. Say what you will about her, Anna Nicole still died, way before she should have. Whether you agreed with her actions or not, she deserves a proper memorial. Most media outlets followed through on this. CNN, on the other hand, went way beyond what was necessary.
CNN gave extensive coverage on Smith’s death; and when I say extensive, I mean EXTENSIVE. Every image, every caption, every scroll bar, everything that was said, all focused on Anna Nicole. The last time CNN gave a story such wide and in-depth coverage, would be Hurricane Katrina. Anna Nicole's passing was the main story on The Situation Room. Wolf Blitzer was talking about Anna Nicole instead of the usual world and political issues that his show covers. If you never knew who she was and you watched CNN yesterday afternoon, you would think that Anna Nicole Smith was the President of the United States and she had just been assassinated. No disrespect to Smith or her family, but was all this “extensive” coverage from CNN, really necessary?
I would understand if this was the death of a much loved world leader or a head of state. But let’s face facts. She’s just a model and a reality-television star. On a scale of important figures, Anna Nicole is most likely to be in the middle then at the top. And what happens when another pop-culture figure passes away? Will he or she receive the same attention that was given to Anna Nicole?
What’s really sad was that it wasn’t a “slow news day.” There were events taking place in Israel, Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq and in the US. Each having more importance then giving an intense analysis to the untimely death of a celebrity.
Clearly, it would appear that CNN follows a bad set of priorities.