Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Part 3- Seattle Media Frenzy
In a recent column for the website Forces of Geek, I introduced the RLSH Media Love Meter, which I use to rate media reports and projects on how positively they portray their subject matter, with factors like accuracy and overall tone taken into account. Media reaction to the Rain City Superheroes has been an excellent opportunity to get the meter rolling.
Story: “Police Alerted to Superheroes Patrolling Seattle” by Casey McNerthney
Type of piece: Police Blotter
Positive: I give credit to this author for remaining objective and trying to just present the facts given in a report by the police. I believe this writer broke the story.
Negative: Almost the entire article is information filtered through the police. There is no real connection made with Phoenix Jones or anyone from the RLSH community.
Story: “Phoenix Jones: Real Life Superhero,” by Jenny Kuglin
Type of Piece: Full Report
Positive: This writer went through the effort of talking with Phoenix Jones in detail about what he does, and then forming their conversation into an article. The result is a pretty positive piece that let’s Jones talk about what he does.
Story: “Real Life Superheroes Guard Seattle Streets From Crime” by Linda Brill
Media: King 5 News
Rating: 0 out of 10
Type of piece: Puffy haired journalism
Positive: Maybe one good quote about RLSH goals pulled from either reallifesuperheroes.org or Peter Tangen’s site.
-Uses the line “It’s superheroes…and they’re real.”
-Refers to RLSH as a “national group of superheroes,” then immediately shows Canadian superhero Thanatos.
-Uses several images from Peter Tangen’s Real Life Superhero Project without citing where the images were coming from.
-Implies several of the heroes shown operate in Seattle.
-Interviews a confused man on the street and asks him if he is a superhero.
-Shows a picture of DC’s Guardian, and calls him “The Dark Guardian”
-Mistakenly implies Ragensi as a female, when he is a male.
-Cuts interview with police spokesman to one negative sentence.
-Makes a weirdo joke, using a shot of a punk rocker in a top hat smoking a cigarette.
Story: "Real Life Superheroes" Descend Upon Seattle In Full Costume Wearing, Crime Fighting Nerdery"
Media: Seattle Weekly
Rating: 0 out of 10
Type of piece: Snarky blog report
Positive: Links to the PI article.
Negative: Blog posts are supposed to be opinion pieces, but even after calibrating the meter to consider that, this piece still got a goose egg rating. Here’s why:
-Calls the group “costumed freaks.”
-Based entirely on the PI report, to diminishing returns.
-Erroneously states the group “takes marching orders” from reallifesuperheroes.org
-Uses this fart joke: “Nowhere on the site are any tips for finding a girlfriend or holding down a job.” That is uninformed and inaccurate- Phoenix Jones lists himself as “in a relationship.”