Join 3,572 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


You spin me right round baby...
May 22, 2006 11:27 AM   Subscribe

Hurricane headlines differ. (warning: Newsfilter)
posted by whimsicalnymph (59 comments total)

 
Sure do.
posted by ChasFile at 11:31 AM on May 22, 2006


The problem is one of nomenclature.

The news outlets are re-interpreting weather modeling predictions from NOAA to fit their individual editorial requirements, translating the scale of results into "large" vs "small" storms, with emphasis on reporting "large" storms.

This is not surprising to anyone who has watched the media frenzy over reporting ratings-grabbing natural catastrophes, from local up to cable media. Weather is a profitable, fear-inducing, attention grabber.
posted by Mr. Six at 11:32 AM on May 22, 2006


What I really want to know is who's responsible for the graphic on the NOAA page. It's tacky, generic, and in questionable taste, all at once!
posted by Johnny Assay at 11:35 AM on May 22, 2006


That really is one awful graphic.
posted by boo_radley at 11:38 AM on May 22, 2006


New Orleans, RIP.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 11:39 AM on May 22, 2006


One thing we know: the white hurricanes will be looking for food, while the black hurricanes will be looting.
posted by LeLiLo at 11:40 AM on May 22, 2006


No, the problem is one of relativeness. NOAA says "ZOMG BUSY SEASON". Yahoo says "Busy, yes, but calmer than 2005". In fact, it says almost exactly that in the first sentence of the story.
posted by Plutor at 11:42 AM on May 22, 2006


One thing we know: the white hurricanes will be looking for food, while the black hurricanes will be looting.

Hopefully the hurricanes will target only poor black people... so we won't have to listen to you whine about that comparison anymore.
posted by Witty at 11:43 AM on May 22, 2006


Well, last year there were twice as many hurricanes as predicted. The news articles can choose to compare:

a) Last year's hurricane predictions with this year's hurricane predictions.

b) Last year's hurricane record with this year's hurricane predictions.
posted by whimsicalnymph at 11:48 AM on May 22, 2006


Fox News: "Bush Administration Begins Plans To Invade Mother Nature, Claiming Threat of WMD's."
posted by mkultra at 11:50 AM on May 22, 2006


ROFL... yea.
posted by Witty at 11:51 AM on May 22, 2006


Seriously, wtf is up with that NOAA hurricane season graphic? Did they make that with print shop?
posted by puke & cry at 11:51 AM on May 22, 2006 [1 favorite]


What I really want to know is who's responsible for the graphic on the NOAA page. It's tacky, generic, and in questionable taste, all at once!

It sure was eye-catching, though. It made me imagine the entire write-up narrated in MONSTER TRUCK RALLY voice.

HURRICANE SEASON 2006!

SEE nitro burning STORM SURGES!

FEEL the RUMBLE of LEVEES SMASHED!

We sell you the whole seat but YOU ONLY NEED THE EDGE!

BE THERE!
posted by Drastic at 11:51 AM on May 22, 2006


Well, NOAA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, so I think we can safely assume the son of a croney was handed that graphics job on a silver platter. It's only a matter of time till we find out he lifted it from some weathergeek's livejournal page.
posted by maryh at 11:57 AM on May 22, 2006


FLOODDAY, FLOODDAY, FLOODDAY!
posted by fandango_matt at 11:59 AM on May 22, 2006


Ha ha. Very funny motherfuckers. Ya mama got a wooden leg with a kickstand.
posted by ColdChef at 12:23 PM on May 22, 2006


One thing we know: the white hurricanes will be looking for food, while the black hurricanes will be looting.
posted by lelilo at 2:40 PM EST on May 22



This year, blacks will stand guard in front of the New Orleans' Neiman Marcus to fend off the pillaging white looters rampaging through Uptown.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 12:24 PM on May 22, 2006


And if you click on the graphic, you can see it even BIGGER
posted by Flashman at 12:24 PM on May 22, 2006


In attempting to confirm maryh's suspicions about the origins of the graphic, I found this, which is sweet.
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:26 PM on May 22, 2006


That really is one awful graphic.

Looks like they made it in Word.
posted by sonofsamiam at 12:27 PM on May 22, 2006


I'm more worried about the sharks. They were killing everyone in 2001, but they were nice enough to stop as soon as the 9-11 attacks happened. But they might be hungry again...
posted by Mayor Curley at 12:28 PM on May 22, 2006


Hey, youze goons. Not in front of ColdChef. The guy actually lived through Katrina himself.
posted by wendell at 12:30 PM on May 22, 2006


Mayor Curley- Yeah, I'm big time worried about the sharks. Killer bees as well. They were on the tear until 9/11 too. Remember?
posted by rollbiz at 12:35 PM on May 22, 2006


Yeah, somebody tell me quick whether I'm SUPPOSED to be shitting my pants!
posted by ColdChef at 12:36 PM on May 22, 2006


Hurricane Season: Cheaper than the movies, more entertaining than summer reruns. I, for one, have my popcorn at the ready. It will be hard to top last year's showing of Hurricane Katrina: Down at the Levee, though.
posted by MasonDixon at 12:36 PM on May 22, 2006


"That suggests the overall chances of the 2004 and 2005 seasons, based on the forecasts, are 0.9%. ... Thus, the last two hurricane seasons constitute statistically very significant evidence that the forecasts understated the probability of major landfalling hurricanes in the US." -- "National Hurricane Center and the Likelihood of Hurricanes"
posted by jefgodesky at 12:37 PM on May 22, 2006


And this thread is not complete until we've disected the FoxNews spin on the story...

Same AP wire story as Yahoo! but with better headline: "National Hurricane Center: 4 to 6 Big Hurricanes Expected This Season" (although it's interesting how some places are focusing on the "8 to 10 hurricanes" while others on the "4 to 6 major hurricanes").

And they have their own cheezy front page graphic.

posted by wendell at 12:39 PM on May 22, 2006


The optimistic side of me says, "great, a calmer season!"

The pessimistic side of me says, "the data in this article just doesn't add up."

'There will be up to 16 named storms, the center predicted, which would be significantly less than last year's record 28.'

versus

'Last year, officials predicted 12 to 15 tropical storms, seven to nine of them becoming hurricanes, and three to five of those hurricanes being major... the season turned out to be much busier, breaking records that had stood since 1851. Last season there were 15 hurricanes, seven of which were Category 3 or higher.'

Granted, they say the water in the Atlantic isn't as warm as it was last year at this time, which will possibly lead to fewer tropical storms, but part of me still thinks it's a giant crapshoot and the coast is going to get hammered again.
posted by almostcool at 12:42 PM on May 22, 2006


ColdChef, I'd invest in Shout Laundry Wipes if I were you.
posted by wendell at 12:43 PM on May 22, 2006


This is even better, from Yahoo, lined up just like this:
FTC: Some Gas Price Gouging After Katrina (AP)
FTC gasoline price probe finds nothing illegal (Reuters)
posted by etaoin at 12:48 PM on May 22, 2006


Mayor Curley- Yeah, I'm big time worried about the sharks. Killer bees as well. They were on the tear until 9/11 too.

No no... this is already the Summer of the Alligator.
posted by BobFrapples at 12:48 PM on May 22, 2006


Mayor Curley- Yeah, I'm big time worried about the sharks. Killer bees as well. They were on the tear until 9/11 too.

No no... this is already the Summer of the Alligator.


You're all wrong. Dateline NBC told me that it's just a matter of time before Internet Predators are knocking on the door of every house in America, looking for sweet, sweet children. Be afraid.
posted by COBRA! at 12:51 PM on May 22, 2006


Well, at least someone will be right about their hurricane predictions?
posted by geoff. at 12:54 PM on May 22, 2006


I was going to parody the NOAA graphic but I realized I couldn't make it any worse.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:54 PM on May 22, 2006


Dude, alligators are totally back on the attack.
posted by puke & cry at 12:54 PM on May 22, 2006 [1 favorite]


It's true!
posted by Kirth Gerson at 12:55 PM on May 22, 2006


posted by Optimus Chyme I was going to parody the NOAA graphic but I realized I couldn't make it any worse.

Seconded. I added Ceiling Cat, and it was an improvement.
posted by fandango_matt at 12:57 PM on May 22, 2006


Mr.Moonpie! Your link is not working, and the suspense is killing me.
posted by maryh at 12:58 PM on May 22, 2006


Category 6 Hurricanes? They've Already Happened
posted by homunculus at 1:02 PM on May 22, 2006


Sorry, maryh--it's linked on this page. Look for the StarRider link. Here's a smaller version, but, really, you need to see it in its full glory:


posted by MrMoonPie at 1:09 PM on May 22, 2006


Dateline NBC told me that it's just a matter of time before Internet Predators are knocking on the door of every house in America, looking for sweet, sweet children. Be afraid.

Indeed. We are in the midst of an Internet-spawned Pedageddon (it began in 1998) and there is no hope for an end. We can only hope for temporary reprieves-- murders of pretty white women seem to stop the predators for a short period.
posted by Mayor Curley at 1:10 PM on May 22, 2006


Yeah, well, according to Pat Robertson, a tsunami is going to rip through the Pacific Northwest. God told him so! How can you beat that for forecasting?
posted by adamrice at 1:12 PM on May 22, 2006


don't forget the polygamists.
posted by puke & cry at 1:16 PM on May 22, 2006 [1 favorite]


StarLady Joan is pretty sweet, too, MrMoonPie!
posted by maryh at 1:20 PM on May 22, 2006


DUCK SEASON... RABBIT SEASON.... HURRICANE SEASON
posted by Eekacat at 1:31 PM on May 22, 2006


TERROR SEASON!
posted by fandango_matt at 1:47 PM on May 22, 2006


TONY'S SEASONING!
posted by ColdChef at 1:51 PM on May 22, 2006


Dateline NBC told me that it's just a matter of time before Internet Predators are knocking on the door of every house in America, looking for sweet, sweet children.

They have internet sharks and e-lligators now?

I bet they use the old Candygram tactic.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 1:57 PM on May 22, 2006


I have to defend NOAA and the NHC here. These guys try to predict and track storms on a smaller equipment budget than most high school computer labs. I visited the main facility last year, and many of the analysts end up buying their own gear and bringing it in because it is easier than trying to squeeze money out of Commerce. Remember, these guys (DoC) tried to prevent NHC from providing free feeds of NOAA data to the public, on the grounds that it was cutting into AccuWeather's profit margin.

In light of this, I fully imagine that someone created the graphic using WordArt. To hire a graphic designer they'd have to lay off an analyst, and I think I'd rather have a crappy graphic than crappy data analysis. But then again, I live in Miami, so maybe my priorities are out of order.
posted by mkhall at 2:22 PM on May 22, 2006


Heh, I love this line from the New York Times article:

"But officials of the federal agency said they could not predict this far in advance which of the storms would come ashore."

Really? An unknown number of hypothetical future storms, and they can't tell us which specific ones will come ashore? Shocking incompetence!
posted by staggernation at 2:35 PM on May 22, 2006


Optimus Chyme - lenseflare makes anything better.
posted by porpoise at 3:12 PM on May 22, 2006


anybody who tries to tell you now what the upcoming hurricane season is going to be like is a fraud.
posted by 3.2.3 at 3:25 PM on May 22, 2006


...or a meteorologist. I believe that it's actually part of their job.
posted by Artw at 3:46 PM on May 22, 2006


I can assure you all that firstly the hurricane while sweep every mugger and peado in its path and then will drop them onto the cleanest , neatest , whitest area it can find.

** Ladies , stop reading this , we could be ANYBODY**
posted by sgt.serenity at 3:51 PM on May 22, 2006


anybody who tries to tell you now what the upcoming hurricane season is going to be like is a fraud.
posted by 3.2.3 at 3:25 PM PST on May 22


No one can tell the exact moment a hurricane will hit land from months out, but the NOAA isn't using fucking tea leaves, 3.2.3. They are more than capable of predicting the severity of a hurricane season with reasonable confidence.

You're in the field, right? So why call the NOAA frauds?
posted by Optimus Chyme at 4:03 PM on May 22, 2006


Saw An Inconvenient Truth today and the Ninth Ward two weeks ago, and my prediction is: that NOAA graphic will be the least of our problems.
posted by muckster at 6:40 PM on May 22, 2006


the good news is all this frothing at the mouth by the media about hurricanes reminds people of the bush incompetencies. wait until the one year anniversary of katrina just a couple of months before the mid-term election. bushco will still come off looking like dolts.
posted by brandz at 7:20 PM on May 22, 2006


the good news is all this frothing at the mouth by the media about hurricanes reminds people of the bush incompetencies. wait until the one year anniversary of katrina just a couple of months before the mid-term election.

Just imagine the new levels of Mexican-baiting we have waiting in store for us....
posted by maryh at 7:34 PM on May 22, 2006


Some Nola footage @ YouTube
posted by muckster at 8:24 AM on May 23, 2006


« Older Henry Wessel...   |   Blender, meet science: The Pai... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments