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One more reason not to do TV interviews

I loathe going on TV for so many different reasons. First, doing a TV interview can take the better part of a day and in the end you are lucky if there is one minute of on-air time. Second, it is a terrible medium for expressing any idea with subtlety and complexity. It is all about sound bytes, whether or not the sound byte is accurate. Third, the interviewer has total control of the situation, especially in live interviews. You are almost helpless. They pick the questions, interrupt at will, and decide when the interview starts and stops. Fourth, you sit under hot, bright lights staring into a camera and it is almost impossible to think clearly.

I never had any nightmare interviews, even though I went on shows as diverse as The Daily Show, O’Reilly Factor, and Tavis Smiley, and the 700 Club. I always expected the worst, but it never happened.

Elizabeth Smart, the young woman from Utah who was kidnapped four years ago, recently experienced a nightmare interview with Nancy Grace from CNN, which you can see here. It is absolutely absurd how self-serving and thoughtless Nancy Grace is in this interview. Elizabeth Smart came on her show to talk about a national sex offender registry and Nancy Grace wanted to talk only about her abduction. What was really impressive is how Elizabeth Smart stood her ground even though the interviewer wields all the power.

Memo to self: never accept an invitation to the Nancy Grace show (if it isn’t cancelled after this fiasco).