Not really – but that’s basically how the Daily News is handling the LHD. They throw something up outrageous and then when you read the article, you get an entirely different take. Having lived here in Newburyport for 25 years, the Daily News is definitely unfamiliar with dealing in controversial issues. And forget investigative reporting! It’s either swing sets on the front page or they don’t cover the news at all. And if you’re lucky you might find something important on the obituary page stuck next to the police logs.
One thing that people just ‘know’ in Newburyport, you’re not going to find out what is really going on in the City by reading the paper. You’ll know about as much as the visiting tourist – and that’s if you practice the fine art of reading between the lines. More often, you’re not told who the players are, what their background is or what their relationship is to the issue at hand. And on the opinion page, there is a name and a place – two dimensional references to use to judge if this person has any credibility or not. As for letting them know what’s going on in town, good luck if they even get your press release right!
After awhile, people just throw up their hands and say, “Why Bother” which is why their circulation is shrinking. I was hoping that when John Macone became editor, there would be radical changes but one man can’t change a well-entrenched corporate culture.
Thankfully, we’ve had bloggers, websites and political papers and other publications who are taking up the slack and exposing the news. Even the Valley Patriot is finding a wide open field here in our small community.
But they’re still used to hiding the reality of the situation. I loved the quote today,
“Lyndi Lanphear, another member of the Say No to LHD, said she was disappointed in the talk of a potential compromise. ‘I think the study committee has put out a lot of false information.’ she said. ‘They have made people feel the committee can’t be trusted.’
Now, such an absurd statement should have been countered by the Daily News. Who has been distorting the facts, fantasizing, intimidating, lying and vandalizing signs and passing out a two-sheet flyer with more than ten statements of misinformation on it? And anyone watching the videos can see the LHDSC are doing their proper job of vetting the ordinance. But Mr. Hendrickson just lets it stand so readers get the impression of the exact opposite.
Wouldn’t you call that Yellow Journalism? Then he let’s Dick Hordon say about 150 signs and 30 to 40 banners and then counters it with saying the Citizens for Historic Newburyport only have a ‘core’ of 10 people. More Yellow Journalism? No mention of the hundreds of signs for Yes-LHD and no mention of over 400 significant names on the online petition. Heck, CEB really only numbered about ten and by their political efforts, the Common Pasture has been greatly preserved and they successfully brought CPA into the city! Tell me that Mr. Hendrickson is being unbiased. We won’t even mention his editorializing when he should be reporting on the Newburyport page.
That’s why I get multiple publications and keep informed through many sources. It’s ironic that on the Daily News comic page, under Yesterday’s Cryptoquote,
Education is when you read the fine print; Experience is what you get when you don’t.
PS. The object is to get Pro-LHD people angry against the Mayor as if she is betraying them. Don’t be fooled. She is definitely for it!