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Saturday Letters

All the News That Fits to Crawl Across Our Television Screens

January 05, 2002

I found your story about the annoying news crawl that appears at the bottom of the screen on most of the cable news programs an interesting development in the delivery of the news ("Tough on the Old Ticker?" by Robert Strauss, Dec. 31). While being able to provide many more items, I suspect that these stations will end up losing viewers, precisely because of the information overload.

KENNETH JOYCE

San Francisco

*

I feel that crawlers at the bottom of the news screen are great! The human mind is the original multi-threaded processor and can easily handle what the author hints is an information overload.

RICHARD M. LEMON

Anaheim

*

Psychology professor Kerry Laguna's comment concerning TV news crawls and young people--that they have "faster information processing" than older viewers--is laughable. The truth is, we are confronted with a whole new generation that hates to read and has an attention span the size of a gnat. Inane cell phone conversations and mindless video games are much more important to them than asking the bigger questions integral to their lives.

Thus the 30-second sound bite and the news crawl have come into being to accommodate a group of people who are far less willing to explore the intellectual side of their minds without help from a segment of the media that long ago lost its way.

DONALD SOMMERFIELD

San Bernardino

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It's not the crawls on the bottom of the cable news screens that disturb me, it's the annoyance of not being able to read the credits at the end of a show.

For the past year or two, the after-show credits have been unreadable. They are in small type, over too far to the right of the screen, moving very rapidly while the larger window features promos for the next show coming up.

This is not fair to the viewers, or to the players who do not get large billing at the beginning of the program.

HARRIETTE SMITH

Los Angeles

*

Since the crawl is going to continue, please let me know where I can buy a TV screen with a bottom flap that snaps up to cover the area. Surely there is a big market for such an item.

JOAN MARTIN

Woodland Hills

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