PBS viewers not happy to find out that ‘live’ D.C. fireworks show was really just a ruse

Not everything is as it seems.

During its live broadcast of the 2016 Independence Day celebration from the U.S. Capital, PBS substituted this year’s fireworks with old footage of past Capital fireworks displays without bothering to tell viewers that what they were seeing was old video.

The tax-funded TV network once again broadcast the annual Washington D.C. celebration of Independence Day featuring a wonderful concert that culminated, as usual, in a massive display of traditional, American fireworks. But this year the display had a hitch.

The fireworks went off as usual, of course, but the low hanging clouds and the general overcast evening sort of swallowed up the colorful explosions over the Capital. It made for a less than stellar video capture, to say the least.

This is where PBS producers jumped in and replaced the live feed of the evening’s activities with old, stock footage of past fireworks displays.

But PBS didn’t bother to tell viewers that they replaced the video.

Newsbusters caught the video:

Many on social media, though, immediately caught the switcheroo.

The Twitter storm forced PBS to explain itself.

It may have made sense from a broadcast standpoint to replace this year’s dimly seen fireworks with more spectacular displays from previous years, but it isn’t Kosher for PBS to make the decision to show old footage without telling viewers of the switch.

Fox News covered the story this morning:


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