Slow down and triple check any image or photo you plan to use on a TV newscast, especially in the death of a celebrity. A mistake can be embarrassing.
Frank Sinatra Jr. died on Wednesday. Someone at WDNU-TV in Indiana pulled up a Sinatra photo and used it as an OTS (Over-the-Shoulder) on the 11 p.m. newscast. The photo was not Sinatra Jr. but that of Joe Piscopo, a former Saturday Night Live comedian who used to imitated Frank Sinatra Sr. Oops!
HOW TO AVOID A MISTAKE
- Don’t be in a hurry.
- You’re not expected to know everyone. It’s OK to admit it and ask for help.
- Look for at least three reliable sources for photos.
- Check to see if the celebrity or family has a foundation. SinatraFamily.com
- If the person was an actor there is probably a photo on IMBD . IMBD has photo of Sinatra Jr.
- Check YouTube to see if the singer/entertainer has video. Sinatra Jr. was on YouTube
- Look for a fan forum or website.
We are a team in a newsroom. Everyone from the producer to the anchor should have their eyes open to catch any mistakes before they make air.