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November 21, 2006
Channel 13 gets high-tech Garcia scoop

Just minutes ago, the Mario Garcia verdict - guilty of first-degree murder and weapons charges in the death of Christie Wilson - came in. And Channel 13 scooped the TV competition by getting on the air with it first.

And Channel 13 did it via text messaging, with reporter Bridget Cannata inside the courtroom. That enabled 13 to get on the air a good three minutes before News10 went on the air with reporter Mark Hedlund, reporting the guily verdicts on the steps outside the courtroom. (Hedlund told viewers he ran outside to give viewers the news.)

What about Channel 3? Well, on this day, it was "Where the News Comes Last." KCRA chose to stay with its soap opera, "Passions." So, while Cannata was texting and Hedlund sprinting for his live shot, on Channel 3 we had the character Fancy calling beloved Luis from her hospital bed. "Does Luis have feelings for me or what?" Fancy asked. Alas, Fancy got Luis' answering machine. Eventually, Channel 3 ran a scroll across the bottom of the screen, annnouncing the convictions.

This was a clear scoop by Channel 13. Cannata interacted via BlackBerry with anchor Sam Shane in the newsroom. They commented about the mood of the family ("cheering") and Garcia ("no emotion.")

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