Aaron Brown is back

I am ecstatic. I have just realized that Aaron Brown will be back hosting the PBS “Wide Angle” series starting in July! Wait, let me calm myself, take a deep breath and then I’ll explain why I am so thrilled to be the bearer of this good news. (taking breath…).

OK, first of all here’s some important background. In a nutshell, Aaron Brown, for whom an argument can be made that he compares favorably with such master communicators in broadcasting (each in their respective specialties mind you) as Walter Winchell, Edward R. Murrow, and Walter Cronkite, anchored CNN’s primetime news show and will always be remembered for his 9/11 coverage.

There are a number of versions of the CNN story I grant. However, to make a long story short, my assessment was and remains that the format and the anchor were thought to be to un-hip for the audience CNN was going after (read younger). So he was summarily dismissed. Subsequently, Arizona State University’s Cronkite School of Journalism (named so in honor of Walter Cronkite) decided Brown was good enough to become the inaugural Walter Cronkite Professor of Journalism at the school. At the time Cronkite, who had gone after Brown for the position, stated that “His passion for our profession and his commitment to its highest standards of objectivity and fairness has been the hallmark of his work, and will be a source of great inspiration for our students.”

Enter PBS, with the foresight to recognize a professional when they see and hear one.  “Wide Angle” was started in 2001 and PBS considers it “the only program exclusively dedicated to international current affairs documentaries.” Anyway they tapped Brown for the hosting assignment last April, so this will be his second season with the program.

Aaron Brown is a model for what makes a noted communicator, which is why I call him to your attention. His background, his public demeanor, his presentation skills, all are exemplary in this regard. But you can see for yourself. Watch the series to air starting in July, Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on most PBS stations. In the meantime, watch and listen to a brief Brown video promo for the series and I think you’ll be convinced as am I that this is no ordinary broadcast journalist. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/wideangle/about-the-series/introduction/31/wnet/wideangle/episodes/conversations-with-aaron-brown/introducing-wide-angle-host-aaron-brown/1808/

https://communicatorsandcommunications.com/2009/04/12/aaron-brown-is-back/

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CNN uses “word cloud” to analyze President Obama News Conference

This post will prove the point that one picture is worth a 1000 (or whatever number) of words. Jonathan Feinberg, a senior software engineer at IBM  developed the “Wordle” as he calls it, as a “toy” as he describes it. In fact the “Wordle” is a unique communication analysis tool which is perfectly suited for the contemporary environment. Most every savvy internet user knows about “tag clouds” – there is one associated with this blog. It provides a visual explication of the global content of this blog by establishing the emphasis  of the blog in terms of topics covered, shown by the varying size of keywords used. As I understand the Feinberg invention, “Wordle” takes this a step further, by graphically distributing a word array of any text feed into it.

Tonight, with CNN using what I assume was “Wordle” technology to analyze President Obama’s nationally televised News Conference, in my opinion, “Wordle” comes of age – and in fact – changed its age; it’s now appropriate for use by those of any age desirous of “seeing” what someone is saying, writing, etc. In the process of using such an evaluative tool, we come to “see” what the communicator is trying to communicate. Pretty neat and a pretty significant advance for the field of communications Mr. Feinberg. We thank you.

If you want to “see” for yourself go to: http://www.wordle.net/ and also visit the Wordle Blog at: http://blog.wordle.net/

https://communicatorsandcommunications.com/2009/03/24/cnn-uses-word-cloud-to-analyze-president-obama-news-conference/

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