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Author Topic: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news  (Read 18658 times)

algorerhythms

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #26 on: May 16, 2014, 04:13:32 PM »


There's a video making the rounds on Facebook this week (I haven't seen it yet) that shows an anchor going off on people who complained about severe weather warnings interrupting a television show.


Every year during the spotter training class I attend a local TV meteorologist tells a story just like that. He ends his with a couple who visited the station to thank him for being on the air when there house in "the middle of nowhere" was destroyed.
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jakeroot

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #27 on: May 16, 2014, 08:21:25 PM »

Here's today's Weather Channel Story:

50 Places Straight Out of Nightmares

The Weather Channel is the next Gizmodo, apparently.
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #28 on: May 16, 2014, 09:07:50 PM »


Have you seen the Weather Channel or their website? Normally, I'm not one to speculate on the interests of news media, but there seems to be a hidden agenda of "scaring people". Here are the 14 Front page stories on the Weather Channel today:

- Is This a Threat to America?
- Massive Oil Spill Coats LA Streets
- EVACUATIONS ORDERED (full caps)
- Photos: California Burning
- Conditions Expected to Worsen
- Flooding Ends in Tragedy, Hundreds Evacuated
- What You Need to Know About the Flower Moon (what?)
- Year-Round Wildfire Threat Ahead?
- This House Has a Secret
- Measles Vaccine Clears Woman's Cancer
- Are We Ready for a New Threat?
- MINE DISASTER: Families Burying Victims
- Tornado Levels Farmstead: 2 Injured
- Flooding Plagues Several States

As you can see, the stories get slightly less "frightening" as you click away, but of course you are too glued to the ridiculous over-the-top headlines.

My point being, your local news agency is just doing what the cool thing is now.

Sort of takes the potency out of "EVACUATIONS ORDERED."
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SidS1045

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #29 on: May 16, 2014, 11:44:52 PM »

The weekly test should be weekly, maybe late at night...And the alert sound shouldn't completely block the audio so that we miss useful information being reported.

Weekly tests must be run in all dayparts, not buried at night, and both audio and video must be interrupted with the test message and data bursts (that's what those strange sounds are - 300-baud data)...all per FCC regulations.

Having said that:  Complain to the cable company.  They may have an automated system running the multiple "weekly" tests and may be unaware there's a malfunction.
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vdeane

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #30 on: May 17, 2014, 03:30:43 PM »

Here's today's Weather Channel Story:

50 Places Straight Out of Nightmares

The Weather Channel is the next Gizmodo, apparently.
Now they're doing places to survive the apocalypse.
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on_wisconsin

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #31 on: May 17, 2014, 05:08:56 PM »

Surprised at all the hate, I make it a point to drop everything and watch when ever a local station breaks in for weather. Then again stations around here only interrupt when a warning has been issued by the NWS.
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Pete from Boston

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #32 on: May 17, 2014, 06:24:52 PM »


Surprised at all the hate, I make it a point to drop everything and watch when ever a local station breaks in for weather. Then again stations around here only interrupt when a warning has been issued by the NWS.

I wouldn't call it hate, more like burnout.  Most of us live fairly uneventfully through most weather, even the harsh kinds.  The weather media, however, would prefer to justify their continued expansion by spinning tales of drama each time the weather changes.  It's tiring after a while, and it muddles the line between actually serious and merely interesting. 

And there is just nothing to be gained by anyone but the weather media by this silliness of arbitrarily picking winter weather events to name (don't get me started on the choices of names).
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formulanone

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #33 on: May 17, 2014, 10:57:09 PM »

I wouldn't call it hate, more like burnout.  Most of us live fairly uneventfully through most weather, even the harsh kinds.  The weather media, however, would prefer to justify their continued expansion by spinning tales of drama each time the weather changes.  It's tiring after a while, and it muddles the line between actually serious and merely interesting.

^ This.

How often do major news outlets warning you of BREAKING NEWS multiple times a day? That's the kind of thing that should be reserved for "Danger: The Sky Is Falling" or "Actual Cure For Cancer" or "Salvador Dali Just Woke Up From The Dead".

When you start to sensationalize many things (especially things unrelated to weather events) on your site and TV station, it seems a little over the top, and hard to take seriously. It's not just The Weather Channel; many other networks and websites do the same thing.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2014, 11:01:37 PM by formulanone »
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on_wisconsin

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #34 on: May 18, 2014, 01:44:59 AM »

I was referring to LOCAL stations only, not the noise on cable and they typically break in for real things like NWS issued severe t-storm/ tornado warnings or (extremely rare) gas main explosion/ disrupting major police incident type stuff.

Around here at least, local stations almost never break in, unscheduled, for winter weather events.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2014, 01:54:29 AM by on_wisconsin »
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jakeroot

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #35 on: May 18, 2014, 06:04:25 PM »

I wouldn't call it hate, more like burnout.  Most of us live fairly uneventfully through most weather, even the harsh kinds.  The weather media, however, would prefer to justify their continued expansion by spinning tales of drama each time the weather changes.  It's tiring after a while, and it muddles the line between actually serious and merely interesting.

^ This.

How often do major news outlets warning you of BREAKING NEWS multiple times a day? That's the kind of thing that should be reserved for "Danger: The Sky Is Falling" or "Actual Cure For Cancer" or "Salvador Dali Just Woke Up From The Dead".

When you start to sensationalize many things (especially things unrelated to weather events) on your site and TV station, it seems a little over the top, and hard to take seriously. It's not just The Weather Channel; many other networks and websites do the same thing.

And ^ This

It's becoming a "boy who cried wolf" scenario. I remember a couple of days ago, BREAKING NEWS Someone got shot overnight in Seattle, and they are in hospital now. Of course people getting shot isn't good, but people get shot all the time, and if it was breaking news every time somebody got shot, it'd be breaking news every 50 minutes.

There was another breaking news case when Microsoft elected their new CEO, Satya Nadella. That's pretty cool (and local), but...if that's breaking news, what are the rest of the stories?
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vdeane

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #36 on: May 18, 2014, 08:24:58 PM »

The problem is, local news still has to compete with cable.
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ET21

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #37 on: May 19, 2014, 02:29:41 PM »

I was just watching MeTV to catch Part Two of a two part episode of The Big Valley when a local news agency broke in just to report about severe thunderstorms in Volusia County, FL!  Wow, big news to interrupt over 15 minuets of regular programing!  I did not know thunderstorms, especially in Florida, is the story of the day considering thunderstorms have been happening since the world began.  Heck here in the Sunshine State thunderstorms are the norm and not an acception.

Now it cannot be about ratings as special reports do not get sponsored. In fact the commercials that the sponsors paid for never get aired.  If its about safety, they can do it in the ticker on the bottom of the screen or just break in for a second.  Then again its only the past few years.  Storms of greater magnitude has never warranted such attention from the local news over the decades since TV began, yet lately it is breaking news.

No wonder why this world is the way it is!  Too much nonsense and not enough worry on the important stuff.


Two points - those were severe storms, not just simple thunderstorms. And also there were tornado warnings for south Volusia and north Brevard.

This. Of course news agencies are gonna break in for these types of storms. I was watching this unfold and that storm looked extremely good for tornadic potential before I left.
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #38 on: May 23, 2014, 06:51:35 PM »

Last year, thunderstorms through Chicago that lasted about 20-30 minutes, they were reported on for 1 hour and 30 minutes. The Formula 1 race was on NBC and the entire thing was blocked out. it  was like this  :banghead:  :banghead:  :banghead:  :banghead:
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #39 on: May 23, 2014, 09:34:20 PM »

I was just watching News 10 today and they're already advertising themselves as first to warn people about the tornado.  I'm guessing that they harp on minor storms in the hope that they become big unexpectedly and then the station can advertise as the leader in storm reporting for months.
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broadhurst04

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #40 on: May 23, 2014, 10:09:35 PM »


I'm still trying to figure out where the name "Super-Storm" came from. Was it invented for Sandy because it wasn't a hurricane? Once again blowing things out of proportion, it seems.


I believe they called it a superstorm because the hurricane merged with an approaching low pressure center and cold front as it made landfall, which intensified its effects at the coast as well as spreading those effects much further inland than would have been the case if the hurricane had just come inland and died out.

Local stations do interrupt programming more frequently and for longer periods than they used to. "Breaking News" used to be called a "Special Report" and was done only when something extraordinary happened. Now they do it in part so they can compile footage for the next commercial designed to persuade us to watch Station X instead of Station Y.

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #41 on: May 23, 2014, 10:17:49 PM »

Last night, my local news station preempted primetime for nearly 3 hours for some tiny storms on the very fringes of the viewing area that had "rotation" in them. Granted, there was a tornado warning, but it lasted for about 45 minutes.
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #42 on: May 23, 2014, 10:22:59 PM »


I'm still trying to figure out where the name "Super-Storm" came from. Was it invented for Sandy because it wasn't a hurricane? Once again blowing things out of proportion, it seems.


I believe they called it a superstorm because the hurricane merged with an approaching low pressure center and cold front as it made landfall, which intensified its effects at the coast as well as spreading those effects much further inland than would have been the case if the hurricane had just come inland and died out.

Local stations do interrupt programming more frequently and for longer periods than they used to. "Breaking News" used to be called a "Special Report" and was done only when something extraordinary happened. Now they do it in part so they can compile footage for the next commercial designed to persuade us to watch Station X instead of Station Y.

It wasn't a hurricane when it hit the northeast so the media had to come up with some sort of sensational name for it
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #43 on: May 24, 2014, 02:22:03 PM »

First "Tropical Storm Sandy" then "remnants of Hurricane Sandy" would be perfectly acceptable. I think people like "Superstorm Sandy" because of the alliteration.
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #44 on: May 24, 2014, 03:26:21 PM »

People like catchy names.  "The Halloween Storm" worked perfectly well until Sebastian Junger's book came out, and it was retroactively rechristened "The Perfect Storm" two years after the fact because it was catchier.   
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #45 on: May 24, 2014, 09:28:18 PM »

The problem is, local news still has to compete with cable.
The problem is that local news THINKS they have to complete with cable.  Once upon a time, you had different newscasts for local news and national news.  The "breaking news" moniker was reserved for stories like "there's a 27 alarm fire devouring the city - get out of your house now."  And the overall coverage was much better and informative.
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formulanone

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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #46 on: May 25, 2014, 11:56:33 AM »

It wasn't a hurricane when it hit the northeast so the media had to come up with some sort of sensational name for it

On second thought, I wonder if calling it "Tropical Storm Sandy" might have been an initial misnomer; folks in the New York City area might have thought that tropical storms* do not make landfall anywhere north of the Outer Banks of North Carolina. I personally think it got the name "Super Storm" because anything else wouldn't have been befitting for it beating down on New York, rendering it largely immobilized for a week.

The media gets to dub lots of stuff; it's usually the brainchild of one writer, and we all have to hear about it ad infinitum. We still hear "gate" suffixed to so-called scandals, which forty years on, ought to mean that any paid professional writer or news anchor/reporter using that moniker should be forced to resign upon its usage.

That said, Tropical Storms and Hurricanes are obviously breaking news; although they're usually days away from impact, every little update at 5am-11am-5pm-11pm is even more breaking news. People need to plan, evacuate, and other stuff.

* Hurricanes Ike and Floyd notwithstanding.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2014, 12:11:54 PM by formulanone »
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #47 on: May 25, 2014, 01:05:56 PM »

Reading back through the archives is interesting.  At the time of the advisory before landfall, the storm was already largely converted.  The warm core (a tropical characteristic) was minimal and the wind field was expanding, with the strongest winds away from the center (a non-tropical characteristic).  It would have been suitable to label it as post-tropical, but for the advisory they called it Hurricane Sandy for the sake of continuity, although there were no tropical warnings by NHC.  The warnings were handled by NWS offices as flood watches, coastal flood warnings, high wind warnings, severe thunderstorm watches, winter storm warnings, etc.  While technically correct, this may have under-represented the storm, since none of those would get the attention a hurricane warning would get.

The official label can change only at advisory time, and at the next advisory it was called Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy.  It was officially a hurricane until 11 pm, by which time it was well inland, but by 5 pm it was clearly already substantially post-tropical.  In the final NHC advisory at 11 pm, it was officially post-tropical and still had hurricane force winds (non-tropical storms don't have to weaken from moving inland, which makes the converted storm worse inland than a regular hurricane which quickly weakens).

I think this discussion is happening mostly because of all the wolf-calling, making people weary of all the overstated labels.  However, if there was ever something to call a super storm, I think this is it.  Enormous size, high impact due to hitting a densely developed area, hurricane force winds and hurricane-size storm surge, the post-tropical conversion actually made it worse because it brought hurricane-force winds further inland, blizzards and heavy snow, severe cold with snow and downed trees making repair of electric lines take longer, the number of people killed because of there being so many ways to kill them (wind, surge, flooding, prolonged electric failure combined with cold), and the amount of damage due to the location and density, size, and multi-modal means of destruction - to me these factors add up to something special, not covered by regular nomenclature and requiring its own term.

This is exactly why they shouldn't overstate everything.  When something actually big and dangerous comes along people will remember the last 30 times the news people acted that way and remember that almost nothing happened then.
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #48 on: May 25, 2014, 01:23:02 PM »

Surprised at all the hate, I make it a point to drop everything and watch when ever a local station breaks in for weather. Then again stations around here only interrupt when a warning has been issued by the NWS.

It may not be available to all readers here on AAROADS, but where an all-news radio station is available, then that is where I turn for such information - not television.
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Re: Simple thunderstorms are now breaking news
« Reply #49 on: May 25, 2014, 05:57:58 PM »


It wasn't a hurricane when it hit the northeast so the media had to come up with some sort of sensational name for it

On second thought, I wonder if calling it "Tropical Storm Sandy" might have been an initial misnomer; folks in the New York City area might have thought that tropical storms* do not make landfall anywhere north of the Outer Banks of North Carolina. I personally think it got the name "Super Storm" because anything else wouldn't have been befitting for it beating down on New York, rendering it largely immobilized for a week.

The media gets to dub lots of stuff; it's usually the brainchild of one writer, and we all have to hear about it ad infinitum. We still hear "gate" suffixed to so-called scandals, which forty years on, ought to mean that any paid professional writer or news anchor/reporter using that moniker should be forced to resign upon its usage.

That said, Tropical Storms and Hurricanes are obviously breaking news; although they're usually days away from impact, every little update at 5am-11am-5pm-11pm is even more breaking news. People need to plan, evacuate, and other stuff.

* Hurricanes Ike and Floyd notwithstanding.

And Irene, and Bob, and Gloria, and David...

In other words, mostly folks that can't remember an un-hip Brooklyn might have the ignorance you describe, but there's plenty of hurricane/TS history there.
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