Living in Arkansas or any part of the South, it is a given. In April, tornado warnings are going to be issued, and more than likely your weeknight television is going to be interrupted.
Apparently they don’t understand this in Kansas City.
Erin Little is a reporter for KCTV Channel 5, which is the CBS affiliate. This is a station which in a highly competitive market, does almost everything right, especially covering those same severe weather systems that Arkansas is used to seeing.
(We only say almost because they once fired former Little Rock anchorwoman and Arkansas treasure Karen Fuller, and reportedly canned her in favor of a girl with a “nice hometown Midwestern look”. If Karen Fuller isn’t the girl next door, then you obviously need a new perspective on your neighbors.)
Tornado warnings began to fire around 9:00 PM on Wednesday night for a county just south of Ottawa, Kansas. Just as quickly as the warnings came in from the National Weather Service, the e-mails started coming in from viewers who were highly angry that they would not get to watch their episode of SEAL Team, where while the twisters spun over the Kansas plains, it was apparently not enough to interrupt the Bravo Team as they sought revenge while they investigated the whereabouts of the person who orchestrated a surprise bomb attack against one of their own.
Some of Kansas City’s classiest communicators included:
“Tell the f$$king weather and shut up back to the show” – Jerry W.
“Stop with your BS it’s just rain shut up” – Erik C.
“GET OFF THE AIR…YOU ARE RIDICULOUS…YOU THINK YOU ARE SO IMPORTANT LET US SEE OUR SHOW” – Jan H.
“SHUT UP…is not news” – Dave O.
“Just the same crap….” – Bill B.
Little says the high score award goes to Jackie P. who e-mailed the station some 125 times.
In the media business, ratings drive everything. But for most television stations, the commitment to community and keeping viewers safe will often trump those highly rated shows, and the revenue from the pricey commercials that go with them.
If you haven’t figured out by now, you can e-mail a television station and complain about the tornado all you want, but you’re never going to win.
But there will always be a Jackie P.