7.18.2006

Blackout, part II. Media misses the story at first, then gets it wrong

Can you believe it? Last night Borderline was whining about the power outage that targeted our side of the street, but tonight it's the other side of the street. I feel for you guys!

Also, I gotta ask, where's the media on this story? All over Newton, Waltham, Brookline, and Boston, there were outages, says Universal Hub. But I didn't see any newspapers or TV stations covering this. Can't they take some of the reporters over-covering the Big Dig tunnel collapse, and reassign them to the neighborhood news beats?

Update:


Despite zilcho in the Globe, Herald, News Trib, and Fox 25 as of late Tuesday night, this morning the Globe finally got its act together on the blackouts. Well, almost. The headline on the Boston Globe website this morning: "New England sets record for electricity use but avoids blackouts". Ha ha. If you click through to the story, the actual headline reads "major blackouts". Still, the reporter merely talks to Nstar, and doesn't bother describing where the "scattered" outages were, how many people were affected, or get any quotes from those affected. It's clear that there's a bit of a disconnect between what ordinary people are experiencing in Newton, Waltham, Boston and Brookline, and what the Globe's official sources claim is happening. Telephone journalism at its worst, in Borderline's opinion.

Incidentally, this reporter is one of the same ones who neglected to interview ordinary residents of Waltham a few weeks ago when describing Waltham's development plans (see "Sloppy reporting on Waltham development"). I think I see a pattern here ...

Update 2:


This morning the News Tribune also has a story on the outages, and includes more details. However, the details are incomplete -- the outages affected Cedarwood and Russell St., says the paper, but neglects to mention High Street and surrounding side streets. It also parrots the NStar propaganda line, claiming there were "no major outages". Gee. In my book, four known outages in Waltham affecting hundreds or thousands of people, not to mention additional outages in Newton, Brookline and Boston, may not be "major," to Nstar, but definitely qualifies as "widespread" ... and a major inconvenience to those affected.

Update 3:

From Universal Hub: Thousands affected in Cambridge, and lots of weighing in with comments. Geez, looks like NStar really has the traditional media on its side for this story.

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