New ways content is presented during COVID-19
By Jerrison Oracion, Senior Columnist
More than a century after the Spanish flu of 1918, the coronavirus pandemic is a major event that no one expected to happen. It has affected our daily routines since we stay at home as much as possible. While everyone tries to get updates on the pandemic and stay entertained, even the media has been affected by it.
When the pandemic began, the hosts of The National, Adrienne Arsenault and Andrew Chang, were in the studio as usual. The following week, they were two meters apart on opposite sides of the desk. As the weeks went by, Arsenault had to do the show from her house—outside of the studio while Chang was still inside the studio. Similar procedures happened on other news shows and specials where Global News’ Kristi Gordon did the weather from her house, CBC News’ Susana da Silva did reports from her backyard instead of the newsroom, and CNN anchorChris Cuomo (who is the brother of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo) tested positive for COVID-19 and did his show Cuomo Prime Time from his apartment.
While some news organizations still complain about President Donald Trump’s response to the pandemic, they are not complaining as much they were before the crisis really ramped up. Along with complaints, they were previously talking more about the impact of the pandemic and shared positive messages that we will get through this together. TV is now in disaster mode and almost every channel shows updates on the health crisis 24/7. This type of coverage is typical for a natural disaster.
Everyday, I go back and forth between Global News: BC 1, CBC News Network, and the cable news channels in the US to get all the essential information about the pandemic. The commercials are serious and have the same production value as a Super Bowl commercial. They remind us that if we all practice social distancing, we can go back to being together again. They even made up some fun ways to convince us to take action and thanked all of the essential workers for keeping us safe.
While some shows were still on during the pandemic, it will affect summer TV this year and even go beyond that. The production of many shows are suspended and the next seasons of these shows are probably going to be delayed. Reality shows are especially going to be affected by this in the case of this season of Big Brother Canada ending early. Despite the delayed films, a lot of movies were released straight to digital. This may suggest that these films would not have done very well if the pandemic did not happen.
Though, the surge of live streaming and social media brings an unlimited amount of content that is still entertaining and spreads the word on social distancing. Like free concerts, live chats, and group conversations (especially on Zoom which I usually use when I do surveys). Trends also including the “wash your hands” challenge and the 6 PM sing The Tragically Hip songs including “Courage” and “Bobcaygeon.” I am even a regular watcher of a YouTube show called No Idol No Life where I discuss and comment on how the pandemic is affecting Japanese female idol groups.
For us at the Other Press, we are still online to keep you informed about COVID-19. If we all take action, fun times will be back.