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That man who got hit…what was his name? Who Cares.

The interview with Hitchhiker “Kai” was not only shocking in its blatant disregard for a conventional news interview, but it was also surprising in that by the end of the interview the last thing on the viewers mind is the bystander “Kai.” So much so that people were actually willing to raise money for him.  The quirky interview began with a recount of how the homeless hitchhiker Kai came to meet 54-year-old Jet Simmons Mcbride, the man who attempted to kill a black electrical worker with his car. As the story developed I couldn’t help but think that they did not mention the electrical worker’s name once. In fact they did not even mention McBride’s name. Perhaps this could be credited to the legal implementations and repercussions of mentioning a name without consent. However, what about after the fact?

Every article that I tried to find about the incident, focused on the homeless hitchhiker, who, might I add, does not even have a last name. In fact, even after I found articles that were not completely centered on Kai, the electrical worker’s name was still not mentioned. In fact, even as I am writing this I still cannot put a name to the poor victim of all of this mayhem, and why? Not because he was not important, or not even because Kai “stole the show.” It was merely because of the fact that this story was much more interesting because of the crazy haired, bandana wearing, “smash” saying man in front of the camera. In fewer words, he bought more attention to the incident. Granted he was very charming and funny in his own whimsical way, however, the real newsworthy story was overshadowed because the tv show producers knew there would be more viewers with Kai’s additional pizzazz.  The man’s name to this day, I still don’t know, but I doubt we’ll be hearing about him anytime soon. The next person we’ll hear about is Kai and his hitchhiking adventures.

3 comments

  1. I thought it was interesting how traditional newscasts edited Kai’s interview. In the traditional news cast, Kai’s version of the story was comical even though he described a very disturbing incident. In comparison, Kai’s uncut and uncensored interview it gives you a clearer idea of how dramatic this incident really was. The unedited video also allowed viewers to learn about Kai on a slightly more personal level. Overall I think that traditional media is sometimes obnoxious in a sense that by editing interviews you could manipulate people’s thinking and perception.

  2. I think sometimes news definitions are changing. News companies get attention by reporting something different and interesting. There are many RTAs, and constant reporting on this can get booring; this guy added flare and quirky humor which was a bonus. I am not saying I agree with the whole focus being on Kai, but I can understand both arugments.

  3. The truth is, we all love a story about an underdog. Specially an underdog who becomes a hero. Kai fits into this description perfectly. The reporters knew that if they were to focus more on the actual incident than on the “hero” of the story, the news story would not get as many views as it did. Many of my friends know about this story, however they have no clue what actually happened because they have only watched the original interview rather than the news story. In my opinion, we will never really know the name of the man who was nearly killed, unless our hero Kai goes to visit him in the hospital or something of that sort.

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