Thursday, August 13, 2015

Broadcast Delay

In 1952 WKAP in Allentown, PA introduced a concept of a tape delay by 6 seconds because they wanted to add live calls to their on air format. The delay was simple in that they spaced the playback tape reel along rollers from the record reel. The time that it took to get from origin to broadcast was 6-7 seconds.

Now the delay is digitized and is used for sporting events, news, and any time Kanye West gets near a TV camera. The idea is to filter out the bloopers, profanity, etc.

With the political debates beginning and pundits taking batting practice it got me thinking how valuable this tool would be if we all had a 6-7 seconds from origin of thought to broadcast.

Think how many fewer divorces there would be, how many arguments, how many “oops” moments in a day. Imagine if emails and texts couldn’t be sent for 6-7 seconds from when your finger hovers over the send button. Would people have to misread intentions? Instead we are stuck with adding smiley faces and emojis to messages like we are writing in some sort of modern hieroglyphics just not to hurt someone’s feelings. Sure I called you an offensive name, but I added :) so you cant be mad.

In reality, the inverse is true. People don’t use the 6-7 seconds to listen, reflect, and respond. Being first and having the answers, right or wrong, is the norm. If there are 6-7 seconds it’s to craft the perfect zing or Tweet. #GOTCHA. #Whohas2thumbsandissmarterthananyoneelse.

Reflective conversation is a gift…at times. Everyone has that friend that is completely unfiltered and gets away with it. Well that’s just Joe.

I would assert seconds 5-7 are where the coddling or politically correct words get formed. When you can actually see people contort themselves to try and frame and qualify every word and statement to the point where you want to shake them and say, ”JUST SAY IT!”

Maybe it would be easier to just say the first thing that comes to mind and just finish every sentence with “Bless your heart.” Joe is just touched in the head, bless his heart.

“My fellow candidate for office is clearly a racist, puppy hating, deviant, who doesn’t think the rules apply to him…bless his heart.”

That seems easier than defining what a “micro aggression” or “trigger warning” is. Seriously, Google it, then wait for your head to explode.

Or to paraphrase the 80’s song, “Do what you say, say what you mean, one thing leads to another.” No delay needed.

To discuss your client development messaging contact, Andrew Wilcox,, 850-629-9073