Flurry of Diamond Programs to Air

January 26, 2000

Flurry of Diamond Programs to Air

Several programs focusing on diamonds are scheduled to air the first week of February, causing some to worry about the shows' impact on consumer engagement ring purchases before Valentine's Day.

However, those interviewed for the shows say they seem to be more educational in nature. One program, "The Race to Make a Diamond," will air on the science program NOVA on the Public Broadcasting Service Feb. 1. According to PBS' Web site (www.pbs.org/nova/diamond), the show will focus on laboratory grown, or synthetic, diamonds. Individuals interviewed for the program say the show will also cover enhancements such as GE/POL. This show would be the general public's first exposure to information about the GE/POL process. PBS plans to launch an accompanying Web site named "The Diamond Deception" Jan. 28.

In New York City, two local TV stations will broadcast diamond treatment stories, says Antoinette Matlins, a gemologist, author and lecturer based in Woodstock, VT.

On Feb. 3 and 4, CBS's affiliate (Channel 2) is scheduled to air a two-part series on diamonds on their 4 p.m. news programs. NBC's affiliate (Channel 4) plans another diamond story for their news at an unspecified time and date during the first week in February. Matlins, who was interviewed for the segments, says the programs didn't take an exposé tone, though she was asked about treatments such as GE/POL, laser drilling and fracture filling of diamonds. She says she underscored to reporters that the treatments were legitimate as long as they were properly disclosed and consumers clearly understood the differences in value.

- by Robert Weldon, G.G.