-- In terms of television, disability organizations should focus on getting more stories onto the evening news because it is the number one news source in the United States. They should also work on creating non-stigmatizing sound bites that can get into disability-related stories because there is not the opportunity to go into the issue in-depth.
The longer the TV story, the more need for the program to be entertaining and provocative to hold viewers' attention. Therefore, the longer format has more potential to perpetuate stigma. TV news magazines, which are a more recent media phenomenon that fit somewhere between TV spot news and print news magazines, have an "infotainment" focus that has the potential to do double damage if not managed properly. They look to Supercrips as sources and as subjects of stories because they fit with the "infotainment" format. These news magazine segments can give lengthy, in-depth, possibly incorrect, disability information in a visually compelling and potentially stigmatizing format. In contrast, a TV news story has less chance to stigmatize or give incorrect information because it usually lasts only 30 seconds to 2 minutes.
-- Disability organizations need to get the names of their expert sources into the hands of TV news producers and prominent print journalists. Most journalists and producers don't even know the names of national disability groups or national disability experts. In contrast, they do know national business experts or national education experts. Disability experts must be equally as prominent. However, disability expert sources should be trained so as to avoid being turned into a Supercrip on camera. It is crucial that the issues, not a person, be the subject of the stories.
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