At one station we used to all gather around the bank of televisions at six o'clock and keep an eye on the competition while watching our own newscast.
On one occasion the other station's female health reporter was doing a set piece on prostate cancer. It was a pretty standard piece with nothing out of the ordinary. Then she turns back to the male anchor and wraps it up, with something to the effect of it being a good idea for men to get checked during their annual physicals.
"So," said the male anchor, "How do women keep from getting prostate cancer?"
While our newsroom roared we all couldn't help but feel for the medical reporter, who had been handed one of the all time great "dead fishes" in the history of television. (That's when someone on the news team hands you the equivalent of a smelly, rotting sea creature, out of the blue, and you say to yourself, "What the heck am I supposed to do with this?") The poor woman sat there, dumbfounded by the question, and finally told the anchor that women don't have a prostate.
Viewers expect the anchor of any newscast to be well versed in the stories that are being told. If you find yourself on the anchor desk, it's up to you to make sure you know what you're talking about. Nothing screams "clueless" like a young anchor who can't pronounce the Iranian President's name or who thinks a newly elected State Senator will be headed to Washington, DC instead of the state legislature. Or the anchor who tosses to sports and talks about the home team "kicking a touchdown."
If you're an anchor, even for one day, it is imperative that you know what you're talking about. Can't pronounce a name? Look up the pronunciation guide. Not familiar with a story? Do some reading on the Internet. Don't know anything about sports? Talk to the sports guy before the newscast so you won't look stupid. Same deal with weather.
The more you know, the smarter you are... and the smarter you appear. This will pay great dividends when you're handed a current events test on your next job interview... and those are getting more popular by the day.
We currently have an encyclopedia at our fingertips, able to look up anything in a matter of seconds. So being unprepared or ignorant of a subject is no excuse.