Congratulations to Laurie David for Sunday night's 2 hour TBS Special, "Earth to America," that pulled together an amazing cast of comic performers to accomplish the specific goal of ... not much. But that's a sincere compliment.
It's called "unfocused media." Its what caused at least one major ocean conservation group to walk away from Shifting Baselines with disgust. And its something that is absolutely needed, so I mean it when I say the Earth to America event was excellent.
There is a large scale conditioning and suspicion that develops in the broad audience when every time you start to talk about the environment you want something out of them. People just get sick of your subject and come to associate you with either begging or guilt tripping. At the broadest of all levels, its good to give the audience an occasional break and reward them with something that isn't so heavy or overbearing.
That's what they did with Earth to America. And unfortunately there are some pea brains out there, like this reviewer for the Hollywood Reporter, who aren't aware of any larger horizons at which this sort of event plays out.
We've been through the same criticisms with our PSAs. You just have to know there is a need and benefit from this sort of broad media. And you know how you know this -- you feel it in your gut, which I'm guessing is the case for the Earth to America folks.
Unfocused Media: if you think that every activity has to have an immediate goal, you're probably part of the problem today
Posted by Randy Olson at November 22, 2005 08:26 AM