Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Journalists being incoherent

Image by Vino Wong (vwong@ajc.com) Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

So, my sister-in-law's family in Atlanta is snowed in. But maybe even they don't know how dangerous the "weather bomb" is. Here to help them understand is Steve Osunsami of ABC World News (ep: 1/11/11), who lives in Atlanta. Osunsami did the feature story on the snow storm and ended with this ominous note:

"Health officials...point out that the weight of the snow that falls on your driveway could be equal to the weight of a car, so people should be careful."

What exactly does that statement mean? I should be careful not to let the snow from my driveway fall on me or else I'll be crushed? That if I'm the size of a driveway I shouldn't stand outside and let 7" of snow fall on me? That I should be concerned about my driveway because it may not be designed to hold the weight of a single car? That I shouldn't tunnel under the snow in my driveway because if it collapses I could be crushed...?

(I think what he meant was that if you're shoveling all of it, it will be heavy. I think the people shoveling their driveways can figure that out, like any exercise. Why this would concern "health officials," who also say we don't get enough exercise, is beyond me).

Note that Osunsami and his camera crew also visit a family that is unable to leave the house to buy milk because the roads are bad. Yet, Osunsami and his crew were able to drive to their house to film them! Hopefully Steve brought them milk when he visited.

I get the hardship, Atlanta doesn't have the hardware to clean this up quickly. But the reporting above seems a bit incomplete. (But not as bad as the incoherent story Sharyn Alfonsi did on ESP last week. At times like these I turn ABC off and wait for PBS NewsHour to come on. SMH.)

1 comment:

Jessica said...

Thanks, Justin! Heard a story on local news of a TV crew that needed gas for it's truck, so they finally found a gas station open. Started talking to the worker and he'd been there since Sunday before the snow started. He couldn't leave because no other workers could get there to relieve him. Yet the news truck could get there.

It's funny because it isn't me.