Thursday, September 21, 2006

ETHICS: A Bridge Too Far? Safety Considerations for TV Executives

Only three weeks ago the world of entertainment was rocked by the extremely sad news of the death of Steve Irwin 'the Crocodile Hunter'. Irwin was killed in an accident whilst filming for an episode of his planned forthcoming television series 'The Ocean's Deadliest'. He was stabbed in the heart by a stingray's barb and died at the scene - with the camera still rolling.

Only yesterday the world of entertainment was rocked again with the news that BBC's 'Top Gear' presenter Richard Hammond was seriously injured whilst driving a Vampire Car, allegedly on an attempt to break the British land speed record - again with the camera still rolling. At the time of writing Richard remains in a critical but stable condition in Leeds General Infirmary.

Is now an appropriate time to ask if television personalities who are adored by millions of fans world-wide, should be putting themselves in so much danger? Whilst nobody can expect anybody to be wrapped in cotton wool, the enormous outpourings of grief to lose people whom we think of as friends and invite into our homes via our television sets, begs the question - is the price of entertainment really worth it? At the same time if these entertainers didn't put themselves into such dangerous situations, would we still really care about them? A little food for thought, to keep you going until the next morsel.

If anybody would like to donate to the West Yorkshire Air Ambulance that rescued Richard you can do so here.

Get well soon Hamster.

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