Enthusiasm can be faked. . .even forced.
If you’ve ever been to the live taping of a game show for TV, you know that “oohs” and “aahs” by audience members are rehearsed.
For the Jerry Springer type programs, when the paternity tests confirm the presence of a cheater, the more dramatic the reaction the better.
On the other hand, journalists interviewing popular public figures don’t ordinarily have to coach an audience who has gathered. But CNN lacked confidence that Hillary Clinton would evoke an enthusiastic response. So, they staged one.
The Washington Post sent Erik Wemple to cover the event. Hat tip / Hot Air on CNN’s ploy:
When CNN rolled out the red carpet for Hillary Clinton’s town-hall interview with Christiane Amanpour, they did more than just build a set and invite an audience to participate.
According to the Washington Post’s Erik Wemple, who attended the event, CNN warmed up the crowd for Hillary and even coached them on how to cheer and make noise to demonstrate enthusiasm for the former Secretary of State.
Approximately 15 minutes before the show, the producer ran the audience through a practice round of applause and noise-making. The results of the audience-prodding turn up in the show’s video.
If CNN is this worried about audience reaction to Hillary in this district, she’s in deep trouble indeed (as her less-than-enthusiastic ratings and book sales elsewhere indicate). So is CNN’s credibility, which Wemple skewers in his conclusion:
[H]ere’s the deal: If you’re a possible Democratic candidate, with or without a book to promote, and you want an experience that will elevate you, push for a CNN town hall in Washington. It’s hospitable turf.
No kidding. This wasn’t a daytime talk show on a broadcast network — like The View on ABC, for instance, which is entertainment and not news programming. This was on a cable news network and featured one of the network’s most high-profile reporters and news analysts. Instead of having an audience respond naturally and honestly, this news network instead chose to actively influence the audience into more positive and affirming responses for a politician on the cusp of a presidential campaign.
Would they have coached an audience for a townhall interview with Mitt Romney, or Ted Cruz? Let’s just say it’s highly doubtful.
Somewhere hidden in this article is a picture of a cheater. Can you find her?
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