JBlog Carnival Updates, HH, KCC & JPIX

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Some Minimal Knowledge Would Certainly Help the Journalism Profession

Many years ago, when I was a "media star*" of sorts from here in Shiloh, I got to know the editor of a large newspaper from the American Midwest.  I'll never forget what he said about recruiting people to work for him:
"I prefer hiring those with degrees in History, Economics, Geography, Sciences etc. rather than those who studied Journalism in college.  Any intelligent educated person can learn how to write a competent article, but the Journalism graduates only know how to write and have no real knowledge of anything else."

This morning I thought of that when I saw a confusing phrase of words in a sensationalist article on Arutz 7:
"A 23-year-old Jewish man was assaulted near Long Island on Sunday night. He did not require hospitalization." 

I'm not writing this to belittle the pain and suffering of the victim.  But I was very curious about what they had meant when writing " near Long Island."

I grew up on Long Island and I've never heard such a description.  Here's a map of Long Island.

As you can see, it has four colored areas, because it contains four counties, Brooklyn and Queens, which are boroughs of New York City and also Nassau and Suffolk which are counties in New York State. If someone was to ask me what is "near Long Island," I'd say The Bronx, Connecticut and the Atlantic Ocean.  But "near Long Island" is not a location description I'd ever heard, so I was very curious about the location of the attack.

I googled about the attack to try to find a more detailed article, and I found one from a New Jersey paper:
Jewish Man Beaten By NYPD Files Civil Rights Suit
And so obviously I checked out where the attack took place.
Ehud Halevy, the 21-year-old Jewish man from Brooklyn whose beating by New York police officers was caught on videotape, has filed a civil rights lawsuit against the officers responsible for the attack.

Verrazano-Narrows Bridge at
night from Brooklyn
It seems that it took place in Brooklyn.  Brooklyn is on Long Island, so how can it be described as "near Long Island?"  Actually, New Jersey can be described as "near Long Island," because the Verrazano Narrows Bridge connects them, davka, via Brooklyn and Staten Island.
The bridge is owned by the City of New York and operated by MTA Bridges and Tunnels, an affiliate agency of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Interstate 278 passes over the bridge, connecting the Staten Island Expressway with the Gowanus Expressway and the Belt Parkway. The Verrazano, along with the other three major Staten Island bridges, created a new way for commuters and travelers to reach Brooklyn, Long Island, and Manhattan by car from New Jersey.

It may be understandable if someone who lives far from New York isn't all that aware of the simple fact that Brooklyn is southwest Long Island, but I'd expect someone writing from New Jersey to have a grasp of that basic geography.

And another "davka" for you is that the NJ paper credits Arutz 7 as the news source.

*We used to be on the "speed-dial" of international journalists and the staff of the Government Press Office for those who wanted to interview a real live "settlement family."  There were days when we'd give multiple interviews, including TV.  I'd find myself rushing to change clothes as one TV crew left, before the next one came in.  I used to joke that our number must be written on the doors of the "loo," with a PS that I served good food and cake, and our guest bed was comfortable.


Pesky Settler said...

Thing is, while Brooklyn and Queens are ON Long Island, they're not usually considered PART OF Long Island.

When you ask a New Yorker to name counties or towns on LI, they'll tell you Montauk, Cedarhurst, Far Rockaway, Hempstead, the Hamptons, etc.

Devorah said...

Some minimal knowledge would certainly help a blogger not to publish an erroneous post.

Far Rockaway - Beating of Orthodox Man Caught on Video; NYPD Continue Investigation

Wouldn't you think that Arutz Sehva refers to this attack which was reported on May 27th rather than the article you found which was published on January 23?

Batya said...

Pesky, are you saying I was never a New Yorker? In my Stern girl days I'd correct people on that.
Devorah, just shows how unprofessional they are on a7 and on that NJ paper, too.
Journalists are jokes, dangerous ones.

Devorah said...

Batya, the Arutz 7 article is based on a story about a Far Rockaway attack; The NJ paper you refer to published an article at the bginning of this year about an entirely different incident. So the sensationalist article at Arutz 7 is correct.

Batya said...

Far Rockaway is the city line, the border between NYC and Nassau. For generations people thought of it as the beach on Long Island to spend the summer. I have cousins who grew up there; I am sure they always knew that they lived on Long Island.