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The Houston Chronicle Encouraging Bloggers to Stay?

Wednesday, September 21, 2005  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt
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The Houston Chronicle is asking bloggers in Rita’s path to team up for storm coverage.

This raises an interesting issue or two should any of those bloggers get seriously injured as a result of the storm. Are the Chron lawyers requiring a waiver stating that the bloggers were absolutely positively going to stay anyway?

“We’re particularly interested in bloggers who live in the I-45 South corridor; in the Freeport/Angleton area; and the southwest area, including Katy.”

Why not ask for the blogger who would like to go on down to Galveston for the weekend?

Most bloggers are mature adults…well, most bloggers are adults and can make up their own minds. But lets be clear that the Chron is putting out a pretty tempting offer to the always looking for audience bloggers.

Here’s a great list of area bloggers, btw.

UPDATE:

The Chron’s Dwight Silverman e-mails his disagreement with me:

Hugh,

Sure wish you had asked me about this before posting to your blog.

We are only taking experienced bloggers who’d already decided to stay.
And I am cautioning them in the instruction note I am sending:


Finally, a word about safety. You’ve made a decision to stick around for
this storm, but if you want to leave or move to a safer place, do not
let your participation in this project prevent you from doing so. The
most important thing is your own safety.

Under no circumstances are we “encouraging” people to stay.

I simply disagree with Dwight. Their encouragement is not explicit, and obviously not intended, but intent isn’t the issue when the likely outcome of their action is the actuality of bloggers staying put.

I also note that the disclaimer included in Dwight’s instructions is an admission of the likely effect on participating bloggers –the desire to stay in the game even as their concerns rise.

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