I got the press release about Laidlaw sponsoring Berlin Youth Hockey, and I read the story in today’s daily paper. It’s good to see Laidlaw making some investment in the community; that is the sort of corporate citizen the city should hope for.
The story, however, didn’t go deep enough. Max Makaitis held up the daily at tonight’s community EFSEC committee meeting in response to questions about how Laidlaw will give back, effectively quelling any criticism of the answer they gave the committee on the subject. I don’t think the story soundly defeats all arguments.
I can’t fault anyone at the daily on that account, however, seeing as I put several unsuccessful calls into Laidlaw representatives. They no doubt had the same luck I did getting additional comments, and with deadline fast approaching that story was all they could get in there. The benefit of a daily is it gets the news out FAST; the benefit of a weekly is it gets a little deeper. And that’s what I’ll be doing in a story for next week.
The obvious questions:
- Was this a response to quell criticism voiced at the community EFSEC meeting two weeks ago?
- Was the timing planned to coincide with the committee meeting?
- What sort of commitment is Laidlaw making to Berlin Youth Hockey? Does this last one year, or will it be recurring?
- What other sorts of commitments of this type will the company make?
- How much does the company expect to give away in these types of arrangements?
It seems only appropriate to use the opportunity Laidlaw created to ask some of the questions members of the committee and the community want answered.
Really, it comes down to the fact that Berlin is lucky to have two papers. Many communities don’t have the resources to give these issues a second look. Their dailies, like Berlin’s, have another story to churn out. Anything more than a cursory look is a luxury.
So don’t sweat it if the daily didn’t ask the questions you wanted. And convince more of your friends to buy the weekly.
GET YOUR BERLIN REPORTER, ONLY 50 CENTS!
We don’t have newspaper boys around Berlin, figured I’d do my part.
Oh, and the other question I will ask: When will Laidlaw be applying for EFSEC evaluation? I figure I keep going to the meetings, I’d like to know when the subject I’m writing about is actually going to happen.