The Sandy Hook 911 Calls


Yesterday, FTVLive reported that WFSB in Hartford had made the decision out of the respect to the families, that the station would NOT be airing any of the 911 tapes in the Sandy Hook School shooting.

They made this call before the tapes were even released.

NBC also leaned towards not running the 911 calls. They also put out this stance before the tapes were released. 

In both cases FTVLive has said it was the wrong call.

How can you make that decision before the tapes had been released?

I never said that you have to run the 911 audio, my point was you should listen to them first before you decide that to run them or not. You don't make that call before you ever heard them. 

This is a story that runs high on emotion and both WFSB and NBC News said they were making the call not to air the audio at the request of the families. The families said it would just cause them too much pain. 

TV News is not always pretty and there are days when it sucks to have to do your job. But it is a Journalist's job to get the facts and tell the story.

What if Jackie Kennedy called up the networks in late 1963 and said, "I understand you got this film from Abraham Zapruder of my husband being shot. I would ask you not to air it, as it causes our entire family pain."

Do you not run that film out of compassion for the Kennedy's?

You can see the slippery slope you're heading down when you let victims and or families dictate your news coverage.

The families of the Newtown victims had been through so much. Losing a child is the most awful thing any parent can go though. Every one of those parents or relatives did not have to watch the news last night and no one would blame them if they didn't.

But, news stations need to deliver the news, that's what they do. 

As for the other stations in Hartford and what they did last night with the 911 tapes?

WTNH and News 12 CT both aired excerpts from the Sandy Hook Elementary calls to 911. Both stations did an outstanding job of telling the story with respect, taste and sensitivity.

And in the end, that's why you expect from the people that give you the news.