Hurricane causes problems. Who'd have guessed?

Metaratings
31 Oct 2012
00:00

There’s a certain irony in the fact the world is watching New York being battered by hurricane Sandy when the people living there are largely unable to.

Power stations have been knocked out by swelling seas and power lines torn down by the powerful winds. The stock exchange on Wall Street has closed for the first time since September 11 2001, and the US president has declared the place an official disaster zone.

In that context, then, there’s something terrible about the number of headlines reporting that news websites hosted in New York are out of commission, or that fixed and mobile telecom networks across the north east of the country are suffering problems as a result.

Talk about stating the obvious, and blindly missing the opportunity to write some real news about how our industry is being affected by, or better still reacting to, the storm in the US.

Clearly there are some communications available, otherwise we wouldn’t all be able to view pictures of the devastation as it unfolds. International newscasters standing perilously close to harbor walls would be unable to file any reports, and none of us would be able to communicate with family and friends caught up in the event.

Of course there will be some disruption. There’s a hurricane hitting the east coast of the US! But rather than telling us that, how about finding some of the real stories – which networks have stood up so far; how operator’s disaster recovery plans are working now they’ve got an actual disaster to deal with; or how long it will take for everything to get back to normal.

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