85th Anniversary of the Martian Invasion

On October 30, 1938, 85 years ago, 23-year-old actor Orson Welles shocked the nation with his dramatization of H. G. Wells’ story The War of the Worlds. It depicted a Martian invasion of Trenton, New Jersey.

The obviously fictional drama was broadcast nationwide on the CBS Mercury Theater program which aired at 5:00 P.M. in Los Angeles on KNX. The “too-realistic” drama unfolded using “news bulletins” which were especially frightening to the people who fled their homes before listening to entire broadcast.

The panic wasn’t limited to New Jersey. In Los Angeles, hundreds of people called the Los Angeles Times’ switchboard, some even came to the newspaper’s office to be reassured in person. In Ventura, an “excited man” called the telephone company about the “eastern disaster” while a young couple, with a half-dressed baby, rushed into a local drug store warning “the world was coming to an end.” The nation was already tense with the threat of world war developing in Europe. (Hitler’s invasion of Poland was less than a year away.)

At the year-old Columbia Square, CBS West Coast Vice President, D.W. Thornberg made light of matter. He said, “We get calls every time one of our fictional characters is supposed to have a cold.” He pointed out that four times during the broadcast it was announced the drama was “entirely fictional.”

Police PR machine under scrutiny for inaccurate reporting, alleged pro-cop bias (via Los Angeles Times)

Years after Nicholas Robertson was killed by deputies, a new video emerged contradicting the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s account that he had pointed a gun at lawmen. (Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times)

My note: I’ve always been concerned about a too-cozy relationship between reporters and PIOs – especially police department PIOs. This article from the LA Times supports some of my fears.

Amid calls to defund police, the public relations machine within law enforcement is coming under scrutiny.

Source: Los Angeles Times

You See Pepsi, I See Coke: New Tricks for Product Placement

Mirriad, a digital product placement company, incorporated Pepsi into an episode of Univision’s “El Dragón” after it was filmed.Credit…Univision, “El Dragón”

The streaming services have data on viewers’ spending habits and brand preferences, and they’re looking into new ways to use it.

Source: www.nytimes.com

A photographer asked teenagers to edit their photos until they thought they looked “social media ready,” and the results are shocking

As part of the “Selfie Harm” series by Rankin, teens made their noses narrower, slimmed their faces, edited out freckles, enlarged eyes and lips, and added makeup.