Andrea Smith, a writer for the very popular tech blog, Mashable, recently did an Op Ed piece about three Today Show personalities who admitted on air nationwide that they know little about social media. Smith was upset by this casual attitude because when she worked for ABC as a news writer and producer for 20 years, she was expected to be knowledgable about current news and pop culture.
I met Andrea Smith a number of times at industry events and I can honestly say she doesn’t easily rag on people. That’s why her piece in Mashable caught my eye. Smith was offended that Today’s Willie Geist, Savannah Guthrie, and Natalie Morales — three TV journalists at the top of their profession — laughed on network TV about their lack of knowledge about Facebook, Twitter, and privacy on social media.
The admission took place after a Today Show segment about Randi Zuckerberg’s private family photos being shared publicly. This story was publicized everywhere for days. The sister of the founder of Facebook got caught in the same privacy issue that many Facebook users are complaining about. Why is Facebook taking certain liberties with personal content belonging to its members?
Smith sent a warning to the Today Show.
“Here’s a wake-up call, morning crew; your audience is not that dumb. They watch TV news to keep up with what’s happening in the world. It is your job to inform them. Reading the news and then proclaiming you don’t understand any part of it is the epitome of failure.”