Thread: Swine flu hogs news coverage, sows fear

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  1. #1 Swine flu hogs news coverage, sows fear 
    Swine flu hogs news coverage, sows fear
    By Jennifer Harper (Contact) | Tuesday, April 28, 2009


    Coverage of swine flu brought out the piggish side of the press - and some squealing from the public as well.

    Journalists couldn't get enough of the story, garnishing their accounts Monday with alarmist terms, exaggerations and tales of epidemics past. The ailment provided a banquet for news organizations bent on exploring everything from local angles and economic implications to foreign policy, border issues and Tamiflu shortages.

    Swine flu panic has ensued.

    "We've definitely had a big increase in sales of hospital masks since Sunday. Really big," said Vicky Nichols of the 7 Store, a survivalist and medical supplier in Utah.

    Online pharmacies and nefarious spammers alike played on public paranoia to peddle flu cures, using such suggestive sales lines as "Madonna caught swine flu." Twitter and other social media sites also caught the bug; rumors or facts out of context circulated among millions.

    Dow Jones and Hong Kong stock numbers fluttered, then fell as skittish investors considered the impact of a worldwide epidemic. Hogs and pork bellies futures "plunged," according to a Bloomberg analysis.

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and President Obama urged Americans to exercise "concern" but not panic. Press drama, driven by death counts and talk of "escalation," fed public imagination, however.

    ABC News, for example, showcased "the father of bird flu," virologist Robert Webster, who said "50 percent of the population could die" should the virus mutate.

    "This was just one example of television's trend toward terrifying viewers with a threat where the total fatalities do not yet equal the number of people who are killed each day on the nation's roadways," said Dan Gainor of the press watchdog Business & Media Institute.

    The sheer volume of coverage was inescapable, prompting some media analysts to conclude that attention to Mr. Obama's first 100 days would be overshadowed by swine flu fixation. By noon Monday, more than 25,000 print stories had appeared on the ailment. Swine flu also went viral, leading the top 10 topics of Nielsen's "Blog Pulse," which tracks daily online activity.
    Bread and circuses.

    More at the link.
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  2. #2  
    Power CUer patriot45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingersnap View Post
    Bread and circuses.

    More at the link.
    Remember the 0 says - never let a crisis go to waste!

    : “Grow your own dope. Plant a liberal.”
    ” Obummercare, 20 percent of the time it works everytime.
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    Power CUer noonwitch's Avatar
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    Hopefully, the Scifi channel isn't going to be re-broadcasting The Stand any time soon.
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    Zoomie djones520's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonwitch View Post
    Hopefully, the Scifi channel isn't going to be re-broadcasting The Stand any time soon.
    Heh... that would be kinda cool.
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  5. #5  
    Well, now I want to watch it tonight. :D
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  6. #6  
    Senior Betwixt Member Bubba Dawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by patriot45 View Post
    Remember the 0 says - never let a crisis go to waste!

    He'll let a crisis go to waste when pigs fly.
    Hey careful man! There's a beverage here!
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    Senior Betwixt Member Bubba Dawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingersnap View Post
    Well, now I want to watch it tonight. :D

    I bought it on DVD. I love that miniseries. :D

    I read The Stand when it came out. Later I heard a longer, if you believe that, version came out that was more like what King originally wrote it, so it was said.

    I've not read it. Have you?
    Hey careful man! There's a beverage here!
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  8. #8  
    Senior Betwixt Member Bubba Dawg's Avatar
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    Hey careful man! There's a beverage here!
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  9. #9  
    An Adversary of Linda #'s
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gingersnap View Post
    Well, now I want to watch it tonight. :D
    The Andromeda strain !
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    Power CUer FlaGator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bubba Dawg View Post
    I bought it on DVD. I love that miniseries. :D

    I read The Stand when it came out. Later I heard a longer, if you believe that, version came out that was more like what King originally wrote it, so it was said.

    I've not read it. Have you?
    There is a unabridged version that King released in 1990 I think He updated it a bit to replace some of the 70s references with 1990 stuff. It is about 300+ pages longer but doesn't change the story. He included more back story for some of the characters like Trashy and inlcluded a character called the Kid. These where not really additions but stuff the had to be cut from the original to get it below 900 pages.

    I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.
    C. S. Lewis
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