There is nothing like the ratings sweeps seasons on the local news. Thankfully, not all the stations go for the overly sensational stories and will present something that is really worthy of your time. There were many stories, like a day in the life of a paparazzi and part 99,991,047 in the saga of the dangers of myspace.com, but we'll take a look at a three noteworthy sweeps stories from last week.
WNBC 4 had a very good series helmed by veteran consumer reporter Roseanne Colletti looked into the problem of identity theft. The reports not only told the viewer what to look out for and how to get help, but it also took a look at some of the scams in depth. We found the gang, that among other things like stealing peoples houses, that had set up their own fake bank. The series was compelling and of course a service to viewers, since everyone is at risk. Thankfully the station will be remaining on the high road with a five part series on women in combat this week.
Over at WCBS 2 was Scott Weinberger's exclusive interview with David Berkowitz, the Son of Sam killer who terrorized the city thirty years ago. The multi-part story/interview was well framed with historical context and interviews with some people involved with the case. It was good television, but seemed out of place on the newscast and more like something that would be a half hour special. Plus, we really didn't learn anything new, except for the letters between the mother of his final victim Stacy Moskowitz and the killer.
Finally, we have to commend WABC for providing a sweeps story that caters to an obviously under served demographic - burglars. Patricia Wu's report on what is supposedly the "newest trend in break-ins" called lock bumping provided those with larceny in their hearts a how-to video. OK, they did claim that they didn't show everything, but they did say that everything you need is on the internet. For the rest of us they did tell us how we can protect ourselves from this technique that they demonstrated.