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BuzzGA
01-21-2008, 09:12
So what is it with some reporters? (I've been one for 18 years) There was a nice article in yesterday's Washington Post telling people that they don't have to sit on the couch all winter they could learn to do something fun like scuba dive. And everything was fine until the reporter says "before you know it you wearing and oxygen tank and swimming..." Oxygen tank? I'm sure the guy at the LDS quoted in the article was thrilled to see that mistake. C'mon that's a simple fact she got wrong and it is one I keep running across. A couple of months ago a reporter on a program that airs nationally on public radio said the same thing. I met that reporter a couple of weeks later and she was amazed at the number of calls she got for that "little" error. Why is it so hard to get the simple facts right? :anim_soapbox:

mitsuguy
01-21-2008, 09:22
its not just diving, its everything... I see facts misrepresented, and downright wrong sometimes too...

JahJahwarrior
01-21-2008, 09:25
I wish they'd just list the oxygen content of the tank. For example, "before you know it, you are wearing a bottle of 21% oxygen and swimming around!" That just makes it so much easier, because a lot of divers aren't using "air tanks" either, they are diving EANx or trimix.

mike_s
01-21-2008, 10:16
Reporters are dumb, but in the most part so is the general public.

If a news report said "the victum was breathing a 79% mixture of Nitrogen (and 21% oxygen)", most people would think that it was "breathing all that nitrogen that killed him." (how little do they know that they are breathing the same stuff.

BSea
01-21-2008, 10:27
I wish they'd just list the oxygen content of the tank. For example, "before you know it, you are wearing a bottle of 21% oxygen and swimming around!" That just makes it so much easier, because a lot of divers aren't using "air tanks" either, they are diving EANx or trimix.
Since the articles are for the masses, I think that specifying the O2 percentage would cause more confusion. After all, how many divers knew what a 21% mix was before they were certified? And how many recreational divers even know what a 21/35 tri-mix really is?

I think what's really disturbing about the article is if they can get this fact so wrong, how often are they telling us info that we believe because we don't know the real facts?

MSilvia
01-21-2008, 10:28
Sadly, it seems that most people are just confused by facts.

BuzzGA
01-21-2008, 10:41
Reporters aren't dumb they are human. What I want them to do is slow down, and make sure the facts are correct. I cover things all the time that are new to me, my main beat is the state legislature, Congress, and the courts so I have to learn about lots of subjects everyday but I take the time to check the facts and if I don't know something I pick up the phone and get the info and if I can't confirm it I leave it out or drop the story until I can find out the info. Have I made mistakes? You bet, like I said I'm human but I try to get it corrected on the air as quickly as possible.
As for the oxygen tank mistake, it is one we've all seen over and over, I think instructors, DM's, divers who are interviewed need to make it a point to very clearly say "this is not an oxygen tank, it holds air..." maybe we can start to break the cycle.

BSea
01-21-2008, 10:49
As for the oxygen tank mistake, it is one we've all seen over and over, I think instructors, DM's, divers who are interviewed need to make it a point to very clearly say "this is not an oxygen tank, it holds air..." maybe we can start to break the cycle.Well said.

On another note, I think the pic in your Avitar is really cool.

BuzzGA
01-21-2008, 10:50
Thanks, that pic was actually taken on the last story I did in Florida.

Mycroft
01-21-2008, 14:15
Why is it so hard to get the simple facts right? :anim_soapbox:

I don't know, but it was in 1985 that I had to call the local CBS station and tell them: "The reports of my death were greatly exagerated". See, they had lumped me into those that were never born, along with my brothers, my sister, and my nieces, all at once. (Channel 6 Albany)

In the mid 90's, another CBS station (channel 6 Orlando) reported that the space shuttle went up on Friday. Too bad it went up on Thursday. And from Orlando, you can see it go out the window, and hear it.

Also in the Mid 90's (Channel 6 Orlando) also stood outside a house with the local SWAT team. Before the SWAT team went in, the NEWS team announced the address, thus endangering the officers.

In 2004, Dan Rather (another CBS reporter!) reported on forged documents attempting to show that President Bush had been AWOL. (And believe me, there is so much about those documents proving they are fakes that it is funny anyone could believe them).

And it isn't limited to reporters. In 1994, in the company I worked for, I was reported dead of cancer. While the cancer part was right, I surprised someone at a business meeting in 1995 by walking up to him and saying hi. He was the one that told me he was told I was dead.

And you are worried about Air vs O2?

Damselfish
03-13-2008, 08:45
It's hardly limited to diving. Anythiing I read that I know a decent amount about is frequently full of inaccuracies, sometimes little, sometimes huge. Just reminds me to take anything I read with a healthy degree of skepticism.

CompuDude
03-13-2008, 10:11
It happens so often I no longer even get mad.

In person, I'll correct someone referring to "Oxygen tanks" (when it's clear they are wrong), but the general public is so clueless about scuba that I don't have time to send letters to every idiot reporter who gets that one wrong.

Every once in a while, a reporter gets it right. THAT gets my attention.