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A TV veteran says non-studio interviews aren’t dirty tricks

In my previous post, I tried to offer an objective rationale for why Fox 9 interviews newsmakers in its newsroom, rather than in the studio next to its anchors.

In my previous post, I tried to offer an objective rationale for why Fox 9 interviews newsmakers in its newsroom, rather than in the studio next to its anchors. A few minutes later, a TV veteran (who is not a Fox cheerleader and not an ambush artist) sent me this perspective on why it isn’t a “dirty trick“:

My experience with TV stations doing interviews “through the box” — or in other rooms from the anchor — is all about production values.

“Through the box interviews” give the impression of “being live” somewhere — and news producers are trained from an early age to appreciate live production.

Second, I can tell you from my producing experience, in-studio, in-person interviews tend to “move slower” and take more time. From the TV standpoint, that’s another reason to avoid them.

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Third, “through the box” interviews also allow producers to use more visual elements — stacking all three face shots of the combatants and anchors on the screen at the same time, for instance. These visual effects can’t be done when everyone is sitting next to each other.

So — for what it’s worth — that’s the behind the scenes reason these things are done. It’s got nothing to do with comfort, discomfort or trying to make someone look bad. It’s about TV’s internal workings and what is generally considered to be “better looking TV.”