Breaking News: A Story of the 5th Estate
by Jim Boston

"We always seem to be more interested in presenting news as entertainment, and we’ve lost track of being honest arbiters of information."

Although his work days are filled with constant tension and conflict, Keith Collins calmly starts each day the same way. After feeding his fish, catching the early morning newscast, and checking emails, he makes his way to the local WCUY television station from his downtown Cleveland apartment. As the head of the engineering support department at the station, Keith’s team is dedicated to managing all of the equipment that directly contributes to the production of the news. Even though this day started like most others, no one could have predicted the catastrophic set of events that would take place and alter the landscape of the network forever. After Keith loses pieces of his memory during the unforeseen tragedy, the race is on to connect what fragments he has left before the station can make him the scapegoat for the disaster.

Throughout the story, the author fluently paints a complete picture of the daily ins-and-outs of the very technical business of news broadcasting. He accomplishes this by using the bird’s-eye perspectives of several key players, from the techs and cameramen that are on the ground filming for the production all the way up to the suits in the corporate offices responsible for pursuing partnerships and advertising. Boston, as someone who has spent the majority of his life in the television industry, also takes the time to address the quickly moving shift in the way that news is delivered, while subtly questioning who is responsible for this evolution. Readers beware; the way that you watch and digest the morning, midday, and evening newscasts will never be the same.

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