Wednesday, February 27, 2008

ITN dilutes brand with Brits coverage

Here's the ITN On coverage of the Brits. If you watch closely, you might spot something odd:

There's surprisingly frequent mentions of Semi Pro, the latest in the long of line similar-feeling Will Ferrell movies about not-very-good sports people. A poster appears in the background of one sequence; the cab the reporter takes has got the logo on the side; and so on.

Thing is, though, the mentions of the movie weren't there when the footage was filmed - it's been dropped in afterwards as a paid advert, as explained in Creative Review.

Now, we know it's only some entertainment story, but does ITN really think its appropriate to be doctoring news footage with paid-for sponsorship? Isn't that a line that should probably not be crossed by a news-gatherer with a reputation to protect? If ITN ever found itself in another libel case like the one with Living Marxism, wouldn't a willingness to manipulate footage in return for cash give it a harder time occupying the moral high ground?