Nov 27

Double Standard?

This morning, as I am preparing this site for launch, I read the news about the two trains of the 43-year-old Seattle Center Monorail sideswiping each other.

The interesting part about this is, I’m reading the same story from the Associated Press newswire on chron.com, khou.com and abc13.com. The only Houston MSM site checked that did not have the story posted was click2houston.com.

I find it irony that the MSM in Houston will cover the fourth or fifth such incident on a system that has covered more miles than our local MetroRail, yet they cannot, even as a news brief, mention EVERY accident on MetroRail.

MetroRail has had AT LEAST 115 known accidents, and one fatality in less than two years of operation. Are these weekly occurrences not newsworthy unless there’s a fatality?

While I was visiting my parents and family over the Thanksgiving Holiday, I had the opportunity to read my hometown newspaper, The Ottawa Herald. In comparison to the Chronicle, the Herald is a 10-page, 6-day-a-week paper that carries a much higher ratio of news to advertising. They also carry a police blotter, which lists every crime and accident that occurred since the last printed edition.

Most of these accident reports are along the lines of:

John Doe and Jane Doe’s vehicles collided at 5th and Cedar. Damages were estimated at more than $1000.

It’s simple, but to the point. While obviously the Chronicle couldn’t do it for every automobile accident, as it would require yet another section, they could do it for MetroRail.

Its time for the Chronicle and other MSM outlets to drop this double standard, and start giving us the facts on our local “Transportation Solution”.

About the author

Michael Jones

Michael Jones is the founder of On The Spot Communications and On The Spot Blog.

A native of Ottawa, Kansas (approximately 60 miles South-West of Kansas City), he was born in the early 70's and lived most of his early life without traveling far from home.

He has since lived in Lenexa, Kansas (suburb of Kansas City), Houston, Texas, and now resides in Frisco, Texas (north of Dallas, Texas). He has had the experience of traveling to Tokyo, Japan and Tel Aviv, Israel, as well as numerous places around the USA.

A self-professed computer geek, when Michael's not working in his telecommunications job, he enjoys Model Railroading and Paintball.

Michael Jones is the founder of On The Spot Communications and On The Spot Blog.
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