Won’t Someone Think Of The Children?

Some days I’m downright ashamed to be a resident of the Philly area, particularly on days when our local news makes the national news.
What am I on about? Well, ABC 6 “Action News” ran a promo for an 11 O’Clock News story trumpeting the “dangers” of the Nintendo DS and warning that “predators” could use them to (gasp!) harm your children. This idioitic story was picked up by GameSetWatch and then bubbled up to Slashdot. Only problem is that the story itself is a complete distortion of the truth, a misunderstanding of the underlying technologies involved and blatant fear-mongering.
[Re]Action[ary] News’ story covered the harrowing experiences of young Emily Keel who wanted nothing more out of her DS than to chat with friends using Nintendo’s PictoChat application. However, some pervert decided that he wanted to pick up little 11 year old Emily and so began pressuring her via PictoChat to reveal details about herself. ABC 6’s report erroneously claimed that Emily’s interlocutor could have been anywhere in the world, chatting wirelessly with her and remained virtually untraceable, which is an utter fabrication. PictoChat does not work over the public internet Never has, never will. It requires an ad hoc wireless setup, meaning that those you are chatting with must be less than 65 feet away to establish a connection. This means that Emily’s “special friend” was no more than a stone’s throw away from her in the first place, which I think it probably a bigger problem in the first place.
Idiots. Is it too much to expect responsible journalism from our local media?

1 Comment

Your request would involve the media understanding far more then they do today.
Isn’t it enough that they put in a 6 hour day to bring you important information that you need to survive? Now you want them to understand things too?