Originally published in 1989. This diary of a news event looks at how the reporting happened as spread by the news wire system of the Associated Press service in America. Analysing the flow of information in this detailed way, this book presents how a major disaster, a fast-moving story with considerable spin, was fed out to the press via the Dallas bureau in 1988. Introductory chapters outline the workings of a press bureau office during a major story and present interview sections with key reporters on the story about how their role unfolded. Sidebar commentary alongside the reproductions of the news wires, organised by date and time, adds interesting discussion throughout the book, while a conclusion evaluates the coverage of the story. The Appendices include reproductions of Texas newspapers’ resulting pages about the crash. This is a fascinating case-study of the dissemination of news date before the internet, compiled at a time when computers were just large enough to retain in memory all stories relating to event ‘X’ in order for this kind of analysis to be attempted.
Table of Contents
Preface. Foreword John Lumpkin Part 1: The First Day 1. 9.11am, Wed, Aug 31st, 1988 2. The Dallas Bureau 3. The Reporter at the End of the Runway 4. 9.35am, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 5. 10.49am, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 6. 11.34am, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 7. 12.35pm, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 8. 1.23pm, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 9. 3.25pm, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 10. 5.48pm, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 11. 7.05pm, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 12. 9.28pm, Wed, Aug 31, 1988 Part 2: The Second Day 13. 12.10am, Thurs, Sept 1, 1988 14. 2.01am, Thurs, Sept 1, 1988 15. 3.18am, Thurs, Sept 1, 1988 16. 8.07am, Thurs, Sept 1, 1988 17. 9.25am, Thurs, Sept 1, 1988 18. 11.08am, Thurs, Sept 1, 1988 19. 8.16pm, Thurs, Sept 1, 1988 Part 3: The Third Day 20. 1.27am, Fri, Sept 2, 1988 21. Aftermath 22. Conclusions. Appendix A: Standard Operating Procedures for Reporters S. Griffin Singer. Appendix B: Filing the Wire. Appendix C: Wire and Computer Terms. Appendix D: How Texas Newspapers Covered the Delta 1141 Story. Appendix E: FAA Transcript of the Crash. Appendix F: National Transportation Safety Board Transcripts, Crew Interviews. Appendix G: Associated Press Broadcast Wire Stories. Appendix H: WMAQ-TV and the Crash of Flight 249. Appendix I: How USA Today Handled the Delta Crash
Thomas Fensch is Chair of the Department of Mass Communications at Virginia Union University, Richmond, VA, USA