Way back in 2008 I once asked Tracy Grimshaw why A Current Affair teases viewers near the end of the show that a story was “coming up” when it was really just a promo for the following night?
“You know what, if I was sitting home I’d throw something at the telly! I don’t get everything I want on the show!” she laughed.
“We’re not fooling anybody that we’ve got another story coming up. In truth we should re-word that. But it’s been done that way for a while. I just have to trust that our viewers are smart enough to know what we mean when I say ‘coming up’, I mean ‘not really coming up, tune in tomorrow!’”
Points for honesty. Years later it’s still part of the nightly rundown.
So I recently posed the same question to a somewhat surprised ACA Executive Producer Fiona Dear.
“It’s interesting she’s never raised it with me, but I’ll chat to her,” she explained.
“There probably is a smarter way to do it and we are always trying to come up with different ways of selling something. I want to keep (viewers) going into the next show. That’s all of our jobs …to serve the next show coming up.
“The other thing you have to understand is that promo also serves so many purposes. It’s a timing issue. We are a half hour show and have timing constraints. So there are technical reasons why we have it in there.”
So over to readers…. is there a more transparent way for ACA to keep its viewers watching without that little white lie that a story is coming “up next”, when it isn’t really?