The Do's and Don'ts of Political News Video Coverage

Posted by Bradley Popkin on Oct 18, 2017 11:15:57 AM

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Wibbitz's in-house editorial team creates daily Top Story news videos using our text-to-video Control Room platform. In his guest post, Wibbitz Editor Bradley explains how to approach political news with short-form video, to remain as objective and trustworthy as possible.

The Wibbitz editorial team’s primary focus is to create videos that cover the biggest and trendiest news stories every day, in a way that is beneficial for publishers with all types of audiences and content verticals. And when it comes to politics, special attention needs to be paid, because it’s an easy area to fill with biasCovering the abundance of political content out there has become even more strenuous because of the rise of fake news. Fake news has become such a problem that Facebook said it will hire 1,000 new content moderatorsWibbitz’s editorial team has a strict method when filtering out bias and maintaining objectivity. Here are the do’s and don’ts of political news video coverage.

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DO: Report the facts

Whether President Trump repeals a law, or Democrats counter a Republican proposal, it’s our job to tell the story down the middle. Fact-checking is more important now than it ever has been due to the amount of misinformation that spreads. Always check multiple sources (and cite appropriately) before reporting on breaking news, as important details can change in an instant.

DON’T: Give away your biases

Because we have an obligation to publishers on all sides of the political spectrum, a Wibbitz editor’s main job is to stay objective and not allow biases to infiltrate our videos. As a reporter, that obligation is to your audience. Sides should not be taken uUnless specifically stated that your video is based on your own argument - otherwise, keep your opinion confined to water cooler talk.

 

DO: Feature the right footage

Video is a great way to add another dimension to your political news story - it can make it more emotional, and more believable. Some stories, like the debate over President Trump’s inauguration size or meeting with Vladimir Putin, hinge solely on media. So make sure it’s accurate, just as you would with your text.

DON’T: Use quotes out of context

Don’t manufacture controversy where there isn’t any. Use quotes in their entirety and give as much context as possible. The short-form video format makes it way too easy to cut out important information, so make sure to always double check that a quote isn’t being skewed. If you’re concerned about the length of the quote, just break it up into multiple scenes.