I am sure that many of you are reading or watching the coverage of Superstorm Sandy and the harm and damage it has inflicted on the Northeast. In case you are behind on your reading, be sure to read this solid wrap-up of the storm from our site today.
The way things are trending, it is quite likely that many of us will be in situations before long that require us to respond as journalists to either a manmade or natural disaster. Tomorrow in class, let’s spend some time thinking/talking about covering disasters. (I had something else scheduled for tomorrow but think this makes a lot more sense at this moment.)
Disasters create chaos for everyone but are particularly challenging for people trying to get out the news.
In this blog post by New York Times reporter Brian Stelter, he talks about what he learned from covering the Joplin tornado in 2011. Stuff like having enough dry socks. And owning good boots.
Tomorrow, we will watch a film about Joplin and talk about some of the issues news orgs must consider in planning to cover disasters. If you were running a news organization, what sort of plan would you have? What would your emergency supply closet contain? What would you do to help your employees cope with the emotional aftermath?