The Snelgraphix Designing Minds Blog: Manufacturing Consent
Snelgraphix’s Chief Imagination Officer, Patrick DelVecchio, spins a story.
A Designing Mind’s newsroom exposé.
Rumor and gossip are as much a part of human nature as fear and laughter. We know not all rumors are true. And that some gossip is more hot air than hard fact. Even the newsroom is not immune to the effects of a well-oiled rumor mill. Twenty years ago, I used to work in such an environment. Bloomberg Information Television employed many of us as on-air graphic designers.* We had to crank-out things like over-the-shoulder graphics for immediate broadcast. Twenty years ago, this was no easy task. No, not like today. Computer technology has advanced a long way since then. Now we can use this tech to do things like google news media mistakes.***
Broadcast design in cramped quarters.*
Back then, we were all crammed onto a single floor. Broadcast talent sat at desks right next to the graphic design team. We were all intermingled. We all worked on personal computers. None of us were using broadcast equipment like Quantel Paintboxes. The radio talent were using Windows instead of professional recording tools. All the parts and software programs were off the shelf. In many ways, it was ahead of its time. It was the Bloomberg way. Bloomberg Information Television (BIT) recruited talent and management from rival business media outlets. BIT poached from rivals like CNBC and MSNBC. It's what you do when you want to build a global financial information empire.*
Eventually, Bloomberg would buy the magazine Business Week, but that's another story.*
People like to talk when all you do is listen.*
Charlie Rose taped his PBS talk show a floor below our busy one. Bloomberg employees would frequently spot famous guests of the show. I once took an elevator ride with John Miller, the terrorism expert, and reporter, who had just appeared on Charlie Rose as a panel member discussing Osama Bin Laden’s plans, this was in February 1999.*
John Miller might have been taking an elevator ride up a floor to meet Mr. Michael Bloomberg himself. Miller was a frequent guest on Charlie Rose’s talk show, having made numerous appearances on it since the show debuted in 1991.*
John Miller has had quite the post-9/11 career. But that is not my story to tell.*
Michael Bloomberg, the primary founder of the company, would go on to become one of the few three-term mayors of NYC.*
Michael Bloomberg is an inspiration.* He started from humble beginnings and built an impressive business catering to Wall Street professionals.* The first post-9/11 mayor now runs a philanthropy effort, but that too is another story that is not mine to tell.***
So, did Anderson Cooper intern for the CIA?
It sure looks like it. One of my fellow Bloomberg employees, a mentor of mine, once told me that he knew Anderson Cooper. It was nearing New Year's Eve back in December 1999, and we were reporting on the threat of the Y2K Bug.* My fellow Bloomberg employee was mentioning this in passing as we were watching Anderson Cooper reporting for ABC News on one of the numerous newsroom television screens.*
The best piece of wisdom my mentor gave me was to tell me Edgar Allen Poe's "The System of Doctor Tarr and Doctor Fether" story. "Believe nothing you hear and only one half that you see" is sound advice.* My mentor also clued me to an old press trick. Writers need to eat. To maintain a lifestyle, one might have to take different sides of an issue. My fellow Bloomberg employee showed me two articles. Both articles were about human beings causing climate change. Each article took a polar opposite position regarding that politically divisive subject. Both were written by the same hand, concocted by the same mind. Imagine that!
The Bloomberg London office, located in the lovely City of London, is built on top of the London Mithraeum.*
The Bloomberg company has expanded since I left. And that’s their story to tell. More of my stories next time.