Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Channel 5 (WPTV), Channel 12 (WPEC), and Channel 25 (WPBF) all got it wrong

In the continuing effort to clarify the corporate limits of the City of Lake Worth, here is a review of what happened with a recent story. The Palm Beach Post got it right. Here is the Post headline (with emphasis): PBSO seeks gunman in suburban Lake Worth shooting late Saturday

The good news is the shooting victim has non-life threatening injuries. We all wish him a quick and speedy recovery.

After I saw the first TV news report of the shooting in "Lake Worth", within 90 seconds I knew the news report's location was too general and therefore inaccurate. How? I went to Google maps and typed in "State Street, Lake Worth" and then to the Google street view of the 900 Block of State Street where the shooting occurred. After I saw a house number went to the Palm Beach County Property Appraiser and typed in the address. Here is what I found:
Note that the double zeros in the first part of the Parcel Control Number indicate unincorporated Palm Beach County. So does the "Municipality."
The shooting location, the 900 block of State Street, is in unincorporated Palm Beach County: Suburban Lake Worth. Remember, I found this out in under 2 minutes. As high-tech as modern day news is today why did all the TV stations get it wrong? Newsrooms must have fact-checkers; people who verify dates, times, names, details and LOCATION, right? Or do all of the TV stations rely on each other for the facts, playing follow the leader after the first news report?

Here is Channel 5 (WPTV)
Here is Channel 12 (WPEC)
Here is Channel 25 (WPBF)

In the continuing effort to teach the local TV news the borders of the City of Lake Worth, here is a map from the PBC Property Appraiser's website with some points of reference added:
The shooting location is indicated on the map. State Street runs north/south across 10th Ave North from the Walmart in Palm Springs. State Street is well west of Wayne Akers Ford and also west of the E-4 Canal. 

Before any news story hits 'the air' it is produced and then edited. It would be fair to say at least 5 people from each station had a part of this news story. If the number 5 is about right, then approximately 15 people (presumably Palm Beach County residents) from three TV stations didn't take the few minutes to get the location correct for their viewership.

Why is this important? Because there are people that are perennially "loose with the truth" in order to put forward their agenda here in the City of Lake Worth. There are some that do not care about these location distinctions, especially if it points to their effort to malign the efforts of PBSO in terms of service in the City of Lake Worth. Continue to be cautious regarding what is reported and where the media says the incident takes place. And, the same goes for other bloggers as well. 

"Employ every economy consistent with thoroughness, accuracy and reliability." --Arthur C. Nielsen