Wednesday’s Headlines: People Often Over-React Edition

Brooklyn has a new landmark, apparently.
Brooklyn has a new landmark, apparently.

Obviously, the big story yesterday was the terror attack on the N train during the morning rush. Every media outlet on the planet had it, so we’ll just point out a few things that are worth highlighting:

  • The mayor used the attack to explicitly call for more cops and, possibly, for metal detectors on the subway (which is virtually impossible). Here are some key tweets:

  • Faulty subway cameras apparently hindered the search for the gunman. (NYDN)
  • The breaking nature of the news led to this bizarre — yet grammatically accurate! — Post headline.
  • The Times, as usual, unleashed a torrent of copaganda, which was evident from its very first headline edit and story recast:
Tweet: @nyt_diff
Tweet: @nyt_diff
  • And Alec Karakatsanis also had a great thread on that, which builds to a great conclusion (and, cheerfully, a cat phot0): “So, with all the extra clicks that NYT gets from a breaking shooting, it used the opportunity to stoke fear, steer readers to police lies, highly dubious assertions portrayed as fact, and science-denying suggestions that more cops (and not less inequality) is answer to violence.”

  • Gothamist took a broader, “What does it mean?” angle. And the website also pointed out how rare mass violence is on the subway, which was some nice perspective.
  • Citi Bike moved quickly to dispel a myth that it had taken bikes out of service — which would be a bad idea given how many people were inconvenienced by the subway shutdown:

  • In fact, as we often see during crises, Citi Bike ridership soars, as Dave Colon noted on Twitter.

  • Meanwhile, subway service was snarled terribly in the hours after the shooting (NY Post), which prompted “surge” pricing to kick in on Uber and Lyft (NY Post).  But the company said it would reimburse people who got burned.  (NY Times)Amy Webb tweet
  • Speaking of stoking fear and car trips, one city executive immediately tweeted that she was treating her employees to free car service so they could avoid the subway (right), but the tweet was immediately deleted (we contracted the company for comment but got crickets):

In other, non-local-terror news:

  • Well, it’s terror of a different sort: Road rage is up! (It would be nice if America reacted aggressively towards its red state and blue state gun crisis, which is a problem every single day, rather than over-react to yesterday’s rare subway attack). (NY Times)
  • Oh, and by the way, the lieutenant governor resigned in disgrace. (NY Post)
  • And, finally, Transportation Alternatives did a great thread on garbage on the sidewalk, a New York tradition!