The Wright Response - August 16, 2012

By: Mike Wright Email
By: Mike Wright Email

IT'S BEEN A WEEK THAT WILL STAY IN OUR HEARTS FOREVER. AS WITH ALL BREAKING NEWS... KBTX... AND FOR THAT MATTER ALL OTHER MEDIA... WILL BE SECOND GUESSED... JUDGED... RIDICULED AND APPLAUDED FOR COVERAGE EFFORTS.

STEVE WAS FIRST UP TO BAT ON MONDAY:

"Once again, in the 'need for speed', a news organization has reported unconfirmed 'facts', just to get the news out first! 'A spokesperson for the College Station Police Department says there are no confirmed fatalities at this point.' 'According to CSPD, the active shooter has been contained. Multiple casualties are involved,' How about if you keep the sensationalism restrained until you get the real SCOOP?"

STEVE - WE DO THANK YOU FOR YOUR NOTE. WHEN SHOTS RANG OUT AND WE LEARNED THAT AN OFFICER WAS DOWN... WE BEGAN POSTING INFORMATION TO KBTX.COM. THE INFORMATION YOU ARE REFERRING TO CAME DIRECTLY FROM THE CITY OF COLLEGE STATION. THERE WAS NO SENSATIONALISM IN ANY OF THIS... IT WAS EXACTLY AS SUBMITTED.

IN THIS DAY OF THE INTERNET AND SOCIAL MEDIA... ONE WORD CAN CAUSE A FIRESTORM. SO IT WAS ON KBTX.COM... AS READERS FROM ACROSS THE COUNTRY RESPONDED TO ONE REPORT JUST MINUTES BEFORE WE MADE A CORRECTION. WHEN OUR THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS WERE WITH ALL INVOLVED...AARON AND OTHERS WERE CONCERNED ABOUT THE DESCRIPTION OF THE WEAPON.

HE WROTE:

"'It appears that the shooter was firing 'automatic weapons?' Dear incompetent 'journalists' : It is illegal for the average person to own an automatic weapon, i.e., machine gun. But you don't know the difference between an automatic weapon and a semi-automatic weapon. Because you are white-bread know-nothing journalists."

SHOULD WE HAVE KNOWN BETTER? PROBABLY. AND AGAIN... IF SOMEONE IN AN OFFICIAL CAPACITY MIS-SPOKE -- AND WE QUOTED THAT SOURCE -- PERHAPS WE SHOULD HAVE QUESTIONED IT. HOWEVER... WITHIN MOMENTS THIS TERM WAS CHANGED TO "SEMI-AUTOMATIC." I'M JUST AMAZED AT THE INTOLERANCE AND SHEER ANGER THAT COMES THROUGH AT TIMES.

THEN -- THERE WAS THE GOOD - THE COMPASSIONATE AND TOO MANY STORIES TO RELAY HERE. SOME FROM VIEWERS, SOME FROM THE FAMILIES AFFECTED.

JAMIE WROTE TO US:

"I wanted to take a moment and thank KBTX for the way they handled the coverage of the shooting. I noticed as soon as the story started to spread across social media sites, there were many comments about how KBTX needed to give details faster and they needed to get information out quickly. I have to say, I am so thankful to KBTX for taking the time to get the correct information and facts before reporting anything."

JAMIE - WE THANK YOU. ON SOCIAL MEDIA SIGHTS IN PARTICULAR, WE TOOK A LOT OF CRITICISM FOR NOT IMMEDIATELY RELEASING CONSTABLE BACHMANN'S NAME. SOME MEDIA OUTLETS WENT WITH IT, MOSTLY IN OTHER CITIES OR NATIONAL MEDIA. IT WAS OUR DESIRE TO FOLLOW THE LEAD OF LOCAL OFFICIALS, ENSURING THAT ALL FAMILY WAS NOTIFIED. ONCE CLEARED, WE POSTED THE NAME. FRANKLY, I DON'T CARE WHO DECIDES TO GO WITH INFORMATION FIRST, AS LONG AS WE GET IT RIGHT - TAKING THE FAMILY INTO CONSIDERATION.

AS I WATCHED COVERAGE DURING A TRIP TO THE COAST, I SAW KBTX.COM AND QUOTES FROM NEWS 3 ON HOUSTON MEDIA, C-N-N, THE B-B-C AND OTHER OUTLETS. IT WAS SURREAL. A SPECIAL THANKS TO THIS INCREDIBLE HOMETOWN CREW AT NEWS 3 FOR EXERCISING GOOD JUDGMENT, COMPASSION, AND FOR THE WAY YOU HANDLED THIS COVERAGE.

CRAIG CURRY IS A MINISTER IN WEST TEXAS. HE PERHAPS PUT IT BEST WHEN SAYING: THIS IS CHALLENGING. "WHILE GRIEVING TOGETHER, YOU MUST ALSO BE THE COMMUNITY OF HOPE AND HEALING." WE'VE BEEN IN SITUATIONS SIMILAR TO THIS BEFORE, BUT AT THE HEART OF THIS AREA, PUTTING ALL OUR DIFFERENCES ASIDE, IS THAT WE DO CARE FOR EACH OTHER, AND THIS TOO SHALL PASS, BUT THOSE LOST IN THIS LATEST TRAGEDY WILL ENSURE, WE DON'T FORGET.

SADLY, THIS AREA WILL LOSE ANOTHER PERSON WHO HAS CONTRIBUTED GREATLY TO THIS QUALITY OF LIFE OVER THE YEARS, AS WE'LL SAY SO-LONG TO TOM AND JUDY TURBIVILLE. TOM IS RETIRING FROM HIS POSITION AT W-T-A-W AND MOVING TO NEBRASKA. TOM'S ONE OF THOSE GOOD GUYS WHO WILL BE MISSED. HE USED HIS TALENTS TO LIFT PEOPLE UP. WE NEED MORE PEOPLE LIKE TOM. HIS FRIENDSHIP AND HIS UPLIFTING SPIRIT WILL BE MISSED.

BE IN TOUCH ANYTIME, KBTX IS LISTENING, WE CARE ABOUT WHAT YOU THINK, AND YOUR OPINION, ALWAYS MATTERS.


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