Gizmodo CES Prank = BANNED

This year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) was pretty much a dud with nothing really revolutionary being announced (with the exception of Project Kuro from Pioneer.) To spice things up, a blogger from Gizmodo decided to take along his TV-B-Gone and shut down walls and walls of televisions that were being exhibited at the show. What’s even worse is that they decided to fess up to the hooliganism by posting a video of the prank. At first when I watched the video, I thought it was a little humorous but when I thought about it, it was actually a very “stupid” thing to do, as Raffee Needleman described the prank. I would have to whole-heartedly agree that the prank was indeed stupid because it made companies look bad for no reason and made the jobs of presenters so much harder. All it takes is one slip up of a product to give it negative press. Is it funny to cause panic and distress of the crews of these companies that were scrambling to “fix” their televisions in the middle of a presentation?

No. Not at all.

What I’m worried about, which Mr. Needleman also brought up, is the divide between the blogger and the journalist. To me, the writers that post on blogs such as Crave, Engadget, and Gizmodo are journalists. For those rooting for bloggers to gain journalist status, me included, this prank is definitely a slap in the face and a few steps backward. The CEA, the company that runs CES, has issued the following statement:

We have been informed of inappropriate behavior on the show floor by a credentialed media attendee from the Web site Gizmodo, owned by Gawker Media. Specifically, the Gizmodo staffer interfered with the exhibitor booth operations of numerous companies, including disrupting at least one press event. The Gizmodo staffer violated the terms of CES media credentials and caused harm to CES exhibitors. This Gizmodo staffer has been identified and will be barred from attending any future CES events. Additional sanctions against Gizmodo and Gawker Media are under discussion. (via Crave)

Should bloggers be regarded as journalists and receive the same privileges? What do you think?

UPDATE: I forgot to mention that Gizmodo is a property of Gawker Media which is a well established company with many blogs that report on news so they are considered journalists. They even had press badges at CES. Ridiculous.

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