The Critical 'I'

Read. React. Repeat.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

I realize the Al Franken-Bill O'Reilly flap over "Inside Edition's" fictitious Peabody Award is old news by now. However, since I generally don't follow media punditry snipefests, it's news to me. And so I first got wind of it last night, during an interview of Franken while he was plugging his Air America radio show, "The O'Franken Factor".

The punchline is that "Inside Edition" actually won a Polk Award, not a Peabody, and furthermore won it after O'Reilly left the newsmagazine. (Incidentally, I was unaware that O'Reilly had cut his teeth at "Inside Edition"; I've never watched the show, but from my memories of their promos and a cursory glance at their website, it looks like your typical infotainment news show, toward which I take a rather dim view.)

I get a sense that the Polk Award is, as a result of this, being looked down upon as a second-rate version of the better-known Peabody, which is unfair. Regardless of the origins of this high-profile bitch-slapping session, I'm hoping that a happy side effect will be unprecedented exposure for the little-known, and prestigious, George Polk Awards.