Will the Mute Button Really Stop Trump?

With Joe Biden and Donald Trump sidelining the Commission on Presidential Debates this year, Thursday night’s strangely timed standoff will look a bit different than usual. Two changes are fundamental: For the first time since the Kennedy-Nixon debate in 1960, there will be no live audience. Perhaps even more seismic, both candidates will be subject to a mute button throughout the proceedings.

Biden and Trump have agreed to be muted while the other is given their allotted time to respond to the moderators’ questions. For one of the two candidates, this shouldn’t be a problem. For the other, it may be a serious barrier; many of Donald Trump’s memorable debate zingers in 2016 came when he was meant to be silent, and he spent much of 2020’s first presidential debate talking over Biden with limited utility. (In the second and final debate of that cycle, the candidates were muted during their opening statements, but not beyond.) The big question is whether this new system will work. Can a TV network successfully stop the former yapper-in-chief?

Last night, CNN’s Victor Blackwell and Phil Mattingly demonstrated how the microphone magic would work:

This is all fine and good in theory, but it looks like Blackwell and Mattingly are interrupting at a very respectful volume. Donald Trump, however, has a rather loud speaking voice — meaning that he may still be heard clearly on Joe Biden’s microphone. And while viewers may not be able to detect Trump’s doubtlessly fine-tuned arguments at all times, he could certainly make it harder for Biden’s less resonant voice to come through.

“Trump’s baseline noncombative conversational volume is not higher than average,” says New York’s Washington correspondent Olivia Nuzzi, who has spent a decent chunk of time with the former president over the years. “But he is combative — and he is especially combative in a debate. He is also hyperaware of how cameras and microphones work and operates as much like a producer as he does as ‘talent.’ So if anyone is going to understand how to project their voice in such a way to be picked up on other mics, it’s him.”

But, hey, at least he’s not trying to give his opponent a virus this time.

Source link

Related Articles

Do you run a company that want to build a new website and are looking for a web agency in Sweden that can do the job? At Partna you can get connected to experienced web agencies that are interested in helping you with your website development. Partna is an online service where you simply post your web development needs in order to get business offers from skilled web agencies in Sweden. Instead of reaching out to hundreds of agencies by yourself, let up to 5 web agencies come to you via Partna.
Back to top button