Take that!

After feeling the back of the hand of Nick Lemann in The New Yorker, Baristanet’s Deb Galant comes back swinging with her reporter’s pencil after reporting on power outages on her street and beat yesterday:

I offer yesterday’s coverage to Nicholas Lemann, dean of the Columbia Journalism School, who wrote the New Yorker piece, as an example of what he missed.

Here’s what you saw last night on the Montclair Times website. And here’s what you saw on their other internet presence, My Montclair. The Township of Montclair website didn’t have anything about the fire/power outage situation until late at night. And if you called the Montclair Public Library, the official cooling center for the town last night, you got a recording saying it was closed. Phil Read of the Star Ledger was there with notebook, but his reporting contributions didn’t show up on the NJ.com website until this morning. And for the most part, the Montclair Watercooler was clueless, and focused on its usual preoccupations of window replacement vendors and Italian tutors.

We, on the other hand, were all over this story like cheap suit. And that we includes you.

Thanks again for all your contributions — your tips, your “on the scene” reporting in the form of comments, your generosity to your neighbors, and your sense of humor. Keep posting.

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  • http://www.truegritz.com/ Grayson

    Or what about the MSM reporter who fails to report? We have a “journalist” (opinion columnist) here in Atlanta at the AJC, Jim Wooten, who perpetuates, in his fake blog, all sorts of stereotypes — in hopes of inflaming rather than informing his readership one must assume, since he’s surely not reporting the reality right under his nose.

    In this entry, he sites examples of lefties “hating” Wal-Mart — in parts of the country other than Atlanta:

    http://www.ajc.com/opinion/content/shared-blogs/ajc/thinkingright/entries/2006/07/31/we_hate_you_walmart.html

    Yet, there is a very interesting example of Wal-Mart moving into the city of Atlanta, going on right now, that Wooten hasn’t bothered to explore at all.

    He’s oblivious to the sheer hard work, long negotiations, outreach and grass-roots efforts on the part of Wal-Mart management and the surrounding neighborhoods (Wal-Mart) is going into, for the first time here in urban Atlanta.

    This first urban Atlanta Wal-Mart development process has been a study in corporate America working closely with the surrounding community. There hasn’t been political grandstanding from the community, lefties or otherwise, and Wal-Mart has bent over backwards to incorporate massive amounts of local input that they, Wal-Mart, solicited from us, the community.

    Yet Wooten has never attended a development meeting, nor solicited a thought from anyone in this community. He relies on examples that have little in common with his very own Atlanta-based readership, and he stubbornly refuses to incorporate the reality playing out in his own backyard. Shame.

    And yes, if he’d have asked, he may have found out that the precious, anti-Wal-Mart political animosity he gets so much inflammatory mileage out of just doesn’t really exist — not here in Atlanta at least.

  • http://www.newyorker.com/ A.J. Liebling

    Which is what Lemann’s article predicted: citizens are likely quicker on their feet when disaster strikes.

    One of the efforts Galant noted which failed to get the news out was “MyMontclair”– the blog/citizen’s tips experiment by the NJ Media Group for the Montclair Times. So, rather than going off experimenting, the publisher should consider this straightforward question, how do we use this medium for a specific purpose: communicating disaster-related information in a timely fashion?

    Meanwhile, if you read the comments, not all readers are happy with Barista.Net’s overall coverage. I suppose that makes them no different from the old media, in the end.