October 2012 Archives

ABC News and NBC News Analysis

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Comparing two different news organizations, one can realize all the different multimedia usage and content. This content can range from anything like videos and news reports to articles and blogs.

Upon comparison both organizations appear very similar, both are written with quotes from individuals involved or have a connection with the story being written. They also are written in a very similar fashion, where the most important information is written first.

In my opinion it is difficult to pick out differences between the two. The only real detectible difference would be if you read the same story by the two different sources because the material or story is presented with a slightly different voice and the appearance of the web sites.

The first thing a reader sees on each web site is the biggest story which right now is Hurricane Sandy hitting the East Coast. Then below the headline and picture is photos and more stories. ABC News shows a lot of pictures on the right and latest headlines on the left. While NBC News shows more news then some pictures and videos and blow that sections to pick from for news. the NBC News web site appears more busy than the ABC News web site.

Toddler bitten by raccoon in Austin

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A three-year-old girl was bitten by a raccoon while playing in her backyard in Austin Tuesday, news sources report.

During the past few weeks, raccoons, a normally nocturnal animal, have been making daytime appearances in the Austin area. "I heard her scream," Heather Stahl mother of three-year-old Chloe said. "and I came out and there was a raccoon." There is concern that the raccoons may be carrying a disease such as rabies, CBS Minnesota reports.

The raccoon was latched onto Chloe's arm and her mother kicked it away and her father shot and killed it. Chloe was brought to the Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin to be treated for puncture wounds, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

The raccoon was sent to the University of Minnesota to be tested for the possible reason behind the odd behavior, KTTC reports.

Raccoons around the Austin area have been acting odd and "some of the officers describe their behavior as almost and intoxicated state where they're very unsteady on their feet," Austin Police Chief Brian Krueger said. "The most alarming thing is they're not afraid of people." Seeing a raccoon out and about during the day is usually a sign of disease, ABC 6 News reports.

The tests from the raccoon were received Thursday with good news, Chloe is not at risk for any disease. "We were very lucky," H. Stahl said. "There was no rabies or distemper or anything like that," CBS Minnesota reports.

Released again after 27 DWI convictions

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A Minnesota man was released after 27 convictions for drinking and driving, news sources report.

David Bettcher is scheduled to be released Friday after serving three years behind bars for his most recent conviction in 2009. Bettcher, 59, was pulled over after running a stop sign in New York Mills and was arrested with a blood alcohol content of over twice the legal limit, The Star Tribune reports.

Local Minnesota board member Lynn Goughler, of the Twin Cities chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) emphasizes that there needs to be tougher punishment for offenders and to prevent them from offending again. "I find it completely outrageous," Goughler said. "I think he's a danger to the public," CBS Minnesota reports.

Bettcher was released from the Lino Lakes Detention Center and is expected to return to Otter Tail County under supervised release. Final conditions will be set by his probation officer, CBS Minnesota reports.

Many of Bettcher's convictions were served before the state law change in 2002, where DWI is a felony upon the fourth offense in 10 years, The Forum said. Bettcher has served time in jail repeatedly since the 1980's, The Star Tribune reports.

Although Bettcher holds the sad state most outrageous record of 27 DWIs, the people with 10 or more drunk driving arrests in Minnesota is 1,265. "It's incredibly frustrating," Lt. Eric Roeske of the State Patrol said. "They'll find a way around it, so it's really up to us to get them while they're on the road."

Afghan Peace Deal with Taliban become dim

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An outreach from Pakistan and the withdraw of foreign troops holds potential aid to a peace deal with the Taliban, news sources report.

Ambitious American plans for ending the war turned into a modest goal of stage setting. After a majority of Western forces depart, Afghans are set up to work a deal out amongst themselves and Pakistan is ensured to be on board with any settlement. Significant progress is only expected to be made after 2014, the New York Times reports.

Pakistan attempted to reach out publicly and the motion was appreciated key Afghan leader Abdullah Abdullah said. Previous attempts to communicate were not accepted because they were not done publicly. "I see a lot of good in reaching out, in engagement, in dialogue," Abdullah said. The Taliban was rattled by the outreach and warned Pakistani officials that the non-Pashtuns cannot be trusted, Rahimullah Yousufzai said, ABC News reports.

A major role in a peace deal emerging between the Taliban and the Afghan government could be the aid of a third party, Fancesc Vendrell, former representative of the EU and UN in Afghanistan said. Kabul's insistence on being the peace process leader challenges the United States who already assumed the role. The United States is also challenged by the influence of Iran and Pakistan, Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty reports.

'Super Storm' Hurricane Sandy approaches East Coast

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Already responsible for deaths in the Caribbean, Hurricane Sandy rips toward the East Coast carrying the potential to become a powerful hybrid storm, news sources report.

Heavy damage and at least 58 deaths were the result of Hurricane Sandy hitting the Caribbean. It is expected to hit the East Coast near Delaware by Tuesday, colliding with two winter weather systems while it moves inland. The result being "a hybrid monster storm," CBS News reports.

The aggression of the storm is suspected to hit states from New York to the Carolinas where intense rains, gale-force winds, flooding, snow, high seas, and power outages are expected. Hurricane Sandy extending inland through Pennsylvania, Virginia and Maryland and potentially all the way to the Ohio Valley, Los Angeles Times reports.

With wind strength is up to 75 miles per hour, "it's threatening to be one of the worst storms to hit the Northeast in decades," chief meteorologist Al Roker said. Water-level rise is a huge concern since the storm is traveling over hundreds of miles and piling up water. "The surge could be devastating when it finally comes on shore," weather specialist Carl Parker said and NBC News reports.

Hurricane Sandy is in rival with Hurricane Irene for one of the worst storms on record for the East Coast. Irene caused over $15 billion in damage, and experts said that Sandy could be stronger and wider than Irene and meteorology director Jeff Masters of Weather Underground said it could also be as big or bigger than the worst East Coast storm on record, the Long Island Express of 1938, which is responsible for the deaths of nearly 800 people, CBS News reports.

People along the coast were told to prepare for the hurricane and for days with out electricity. Precautions have been taken and flood prone areas have been advised to evacuate, CBS News reports.


Analysis: Neighbor arrested after missing woman was found

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In the Los Angeles Times' article, "Oregon woman's body found; neighbor arrested," the author organizes the story in a manner where they address the six main questions before going into depth.

The author answers the most immediate questions first; who, what, where, when, why and how. It is important to answer these questions so that the audience can understand where the story is coming from and get a brief description on what happened. It is like a preview.

As the article continues, there are linking factors such as the correlation between the victim and the murderer. Also, more depth is provided, such as evidence, so that the preview to the story makes more sense and the puzzle pieces, sort to speak, fall together and paint a picture that the audience can interpret.

Information such as the background or specific detail are placed closer to the bottom of the story making it more vivid and easier to envision, there are not a lot of follow up questions to be asked. The very end of the article ends with quotes from the family to add an emotional appeal and get the audience to feel what the family may be going through. It is not essential to the situation itself but it hold the impact the situation had on the family and community.

Police shoot Rockville gunman

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An officer-involved shooting resulted in the hospitalization of the gunman early Sunday morning in Rockville, news sources report.

After an altercation in a home on Elm Street moved outdoors, a gunman shot and killed a man, according to law enforcement. The gunman ran to a nearby residence, Kare 11 reports.

Authorities identified the gunman as 28-year-old Marcus Michael Barshaw. Police say he was found and shot at least three times by Stearns County Sheriff officer after the encounter. Barshaw was transported to St. Cloud Hospital, CBS Minnesota reports.

Officials say Barshaw survived the shooting, however, his condition remains unknown. Sheriff John Sanner considers the situation a "suicide by cop" attempt, he suspects that Barshaw intended to be killed by police when he raised a machine gun to officers before they shot him, FOX 9 News reports.

Streets around the area were closed before 8 a.m., patrons were told to stay inside. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension crime lab arrived on scene before 10 a.m. and the manhunt was called off by 10:45 a.m., FOX 9 News reports.

Missing woman found murdered

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The body of missing Oregon woman, Whitney Heichel, 21, was found in the forested area of Larch Mountain Friday night, news sources report.

Police arrested Jonathan Holt, 24, of Gresham, for investigation of aggravated murder. Collection of DNA and fingerprints along with three interviews in the span of three days led to suspicions, there were "many inconsistencies" in the interviews, Chief Craig Junginger said. Holt, Heichel and her husband lived in the same apartment complex, The Los Angeles Times reports.

Heichel went missing Tuesday morning on her way to work at Starbucks, a short five-minute drive from the apartment. Clint, Heichel's husband called police after being informed that she didn't make it to work. Police investigated, discovering the use of her ATM card at a local gas station, The Examiner reports.

Police discovered Heichel's SUV at 11:17 a.m. in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart in Wood Village. Her personal belongings were found in a dumpster in a near by shopping center. A church-organized search team found evidence and a license plate on Larch Mountain Wednesday. Police also found additional evidence from Heichel's vehicle on Larch Mountain Thursday, Gresham Katu reports.

Crime evidence received after the Heichel's body was found Friday morning, connected Holt to Heichel's SUV. Police arrested Holt during their Friday night interview, The Los Angeles Times reports.

The community set up a memorial with flowers, candles and teddy bears on a table outside of Starbucks, in remembrance of the young woman, The Oregonian reports.

"Whitney was a very loving person," Jim Vaughn, a family spokesman said. "She was warm, she was kind, she was everything you would want in a friend, relative, spiritual fellow worshipper." Vaughn thanked the police during the Friday night news conference for their commitment to the case, The Los Angeles Times reported.

Tire explosion sends mechanic to hospital

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A camper tire exploded at an Orono auto shop Friday, injuring two people, news sources report.

Emergency medical services (EMS) were called to the scene at Amstar on Shoreline Drive by mechanic Brady Lobitz, who was inside the station working on a car when the tire exploded. "It was very loud," Lobitz said. "Sounded like a bomb." Lobitz investigated, finding his fellow employee and the camper owner on the ground, CBS Minnesota reported.

The mechanic was attempting to fill the inner tire to a duel tired truck when it blew, he was transported to North Memorial Medical Center with trauma to his head and left arm. The camper owner was treated for minor injuries and released on scene. Further investigation lead investigators to believe more serious injuries would have resulted if the mechanic had been filling the outside tire, NBC News reported.

"We were just filling it, when the tire exploded," Jim Cleary, the camper owner said. "My hand was close to the tire, and blew us both back about four feet." Metal shavings from the tire just missed the mechanics eye and the doctors said he'd regain hearing in a week or so, CBS Minnesota reported.

National peanut product recall expands

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Peanut butter and peanut products have been recalled due to their link to a salmonella outbreak from New Mexico's Sunland Inc., news sources report.

The list of recalled products expanded to include over 400 products, which included items such as MoonPies and ice cream, according to the Food and Drug Administration and Sunland Inc.. The FDA warns customers to discard any products in association with Sunland in fear of contracting Salmonella, ABC News reports.

The rare Salmonella strain has infected 35 people across 19 states and has not resulted in any deaths thus far, according to the FDA. Salmonella is a serious bacterial infection that can be fatal for people with weak immune systems, children, and elderly or frail people, The Columbus Dispatch reports.

Sunland employees obtain their jobs, however instead of producing peanut products they are working to clean and update the plant. Until the plant is active, the actively harvested nuts will be stored in drying trailers. Since peanuts store well, one harvest can provide enough peanuts for a year's worth of production, The Seattle Times reports.

The FDA labeled peanut butter as a high-risk food following a 2007 incident of Salmonella poisoning at a ConAgra facility in Nebraska that sickened over 400 people. It was suspected by ConAgra officials that a leaky roof and faulty sprinkler system allowed for moisture to mix with dormant Salmonella bacteria creating an outbreak. FDA intensified its investigation of all peanut facilities since the outbreak, The Seattle Times reports.

Problems in the Sunland plant had been found in two FDA inspections in 2009 and 2010. The inspections found "objectionable conditions," however, they did not meet the FDA's threshold for action. Reasons behind the FDA inspecting Sunland twice in two years and the details of the "objectionable conditions" were not released, The Seattle Times reported.

China hires underage interns

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Underage interns were found working in China's Foxconn factories Tuesday, news sources report.

The underage interns, aging as young as 14-years-old, were found during a company investigation at a factory in the city of Yantai. The legal working age in China is 16-years-old. The children were sent back to school, Denver Post reported.

Foxconn carries a short-term internship program with numerous vocational schools and education programs throughout China. State media reports that the programs and tabs for students is in reaction to the shortages of labor in Foxconn plants. Thousands of students fall victim, Mercury News reported.

Regional editor at China's Economist Intelligence Unit, Duncan Innes-Ker, informed BBC News that for several years the regulation of underage employment has been "a grey area." Companies have lowered standards to include individuals with little skill in order to fill shortages. The number of underage interns is unknown, Global Post reported.


Australian daredevil breaks the sound barrier skydiving

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Daredevil and extremist Felix Baumgartner jumped from the stratosphere, 24-miles high, setting world records, news sources report.

Baumgartner, 43, broke the record for the highest skydive, highest manned balloon flight, and broke the sound barrier (approximately 690 mph) by reaching speeds close to 833 mph according to preliminary data, International Business Times reports.

The Australian daredevil adds another mark to the already historical day, "the 65th anniversary of the first supersonic airplane flight" in 1947 by Chuck Yeager. Baumgartner free fell for approximately 4 minutes and 20 seconds before his parachute deployed, setting yet another record, Yahoo! News reports.

It took approximately 2-1/2 hours to ascend into the stratosphere but only a mere 10 minutes to land safely on the ground in New Mexico. Baumgartner tells reporters, "Sometimes you have to get up really high to know how small you are." Raising his arms in victory, Baumgartner tackled the historical plummet, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Zombies secure another city

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Zombies invade the city once again for the eighth annual Zombie Pub Crawl Saturday, news sources report.

The zombie epidemic exploded from a shared idea between 100 friends inspired by films such as "28 Days Later" and "Shaun of the Dead," to last year's estimated 30,000 zombified participants. Spreading from "the West Bank in Minneapolis into a dual-city invasion" and infected Schell's Brewing company resulting in a limited-edition canned beer labeled, "Brain Belt", Hispanic Business reported.

St. Paul's Midway Stadium will be known as "Zombie Island" Saturday where Zombie Pub Craw organizers plan to shatter the Guinness world record for the largest zombie gathering by providing activities and music to bait in the zombies, CBS Minnesota reported.

Local bars are excited to host the bloody, messy, chaotic event serving larger and thirstier crowds. The Zombie Pub Crawl is becoming known as "one of the busiest days" for the local bars. Co-organizer Taylor Carik tells reporters, "We want this to be a net positive for everyone," The Journal reported.

Wolf hunt is on in Minnesota after court decision

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Petitioners' requests to stop the wolf hunt were denied at the Minnesota Court of Appeals Wednesday, news sources report.

The two petitioning groups, the Center for Biological Diversity and Howling for Wolves, claimed that the administrative rules the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) failed to follow would cause irreparable harm in the people's right and ability to observe wolves. However, the petitioners were not able to prove and attribute their claims of irreparable harm to the DNR rules on the hunt, the Duluth News Tribune reported.

The court informed petitioners that the rules for the hunt were established not by the DNR, but by the Legislature. The court decision read, "Petitioners failed to identify any claimed irreparable harm attributable to the DNR rules, rather than the Legislature's decision to authorize wolf hunting." Emotional triggers have been pulled since the hunt was proposed. It will be the first time since the 1970's that wolves can legally be hunted in Minnesota, the Star Tribune reported.

A stable population of about 3,000 wolves reside in Minnesota has allowed them to be removed from the endangered species list and placed on a management list, the Duluth News Tribune reported.

The DNR's planned conservative approach established a target of 400 wolves to be harvested this season. "The season will not have any significant impact on the population," the DNR said. The hunt is aimed at an effort to resolve or limit conflicts and interactions between wolves and humans, the Grand Forks Herald reported.

A lottery was held for wolf licenses, only 6,000 hunters out of approximately 23,000 received a license, and not all lottery winners will kill a wolf. The hunt is planned to close when the target of 400 wolves has been reached, the Star Tribune reported.

Space shuttle Endeavour on its final stretch

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Tens of thousands of spectators watch as space shuttle Endeavour makes its slow journey down the streets of Los Angeles, news sources report.

After 21 years of service and 25 trips, Endeavour has traveled 123 million miles and circled the Earth nearly 4,700 times to retire at the California Science Center, BBC reports.

In preparation for the arrival of the shuttle, 400 trees along the 12-mile route were removed to accommodate the wingspan. However, accumulated obstacles such as historical trees, light posts, buildings and carrier maintenance still delayed the shuttle, Mercury News reported.

The California Science Center Foundation will plant four trees for every one tree that was removed, NBC reports.

Creative solutions allowed the shuttle to successfully maneuver its way through the streets. A positive energy was obtained through the whole process as spectators observed. Mark Kelly, a former shuttle commander, told BBC that he hoped the shuttle would inspire kids and future generations, BBC reported.

The ceremony marks the homecoming of the shuttle. With Southern California as its birthplace, residents and spectators welcome the shuttle home where it is seen as an inspiration to many, NBC reported.

Syrian Government Targets Hospitals

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The Syrian government is targeting and torturing dissidents in hospitals, forcing protesters to seek medical attention and treatment elsewhere, news sources report.

Government officials and medical workers have been seen torturing and ill-treating patients in the government-run hospitals. Any hospital workers "suspected of treating" dissidents face arrest and torture themselves, Amnesty International reports.

A large amount of people finds the risk of not treating major wounds safer than seeking medical attention at hospitals. Many find themselves seeking medical attention at makeshift or private hospitals in an attempt to avoid the potential violence and consequences of visiting a government-run hospital, according to Amnesty International.

Medical equipment for the makeshift hospitals are stored in a warehouse apart from the many hospitals and patients that share it incase of a raid. Makeshift hospitals can receive equipment such as operating tables and heart monitors within 10 minutes, PRI reports.

"There are few doctors who were willing to risk their lives to help injured protesters, because it's so dangerous," Reporter Ramita Navai tells PRI.

Although documentation of the patient abuse exists, government officials repeatedly deny "all allegations of mistreating protesters," PRI reports.

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