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Local mug shots all the rage, but should the media be using them so freely?

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One of the hottest stories making the rounds today deals with the public's fascination with mug shots and the media's desire to give the public what they want.

CNN takes an in-depth look at this issue and reveals some interesting, if not slightly alarming news.

"Mug shots of strangers have a raw entertainment value. Americans seem to be titillated by images of arrestees, and several media outlets are capitalizing on it.

Online newspapers such as Newsday and the Palm Beach Post run sections of nothing but mug shots of people arrested the night before. Other Web sites, such as, intermingle celebrity and historical mug shots with those of average Joes and Janes. There are also numerous books -- "Least Wanted" and "Booked," among them -- dealing in mug shots, both famous and layperson.

Of course, this practice touches off the debate of whether this has any journalistic value or if it's a just a ploy to boost readership. If you haven't noticed, newspapers are struggling.

If your local paper or preferred news Web site starting running these, would you make it a point to browse them? Do you feel like it's just capitalizing on people's voyeuristic side or does it serve a public service?

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This page contains a single entry by Kyle Koster published on December 8, 2008 1:14 PM.

Joe Gordon elected to National Baseball Hall of Fame, Ron Santo misses out again was the previous entry in this blog.

Chicago Sports Week In Review: Bears, Bulls, Hawks -- plus an open letter regarding Bob Howry and Javier Vazquez is the next entry in this blog.

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