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Today's word on journalism

Monday, October 22, 2007

Can't Scare the Old Gray Lady:

"Good journalism for an intelligent general audience is hard. And we’re really good at it. Taking on The Times is not as easy as waving a credit card and proclaiming yourself 'fair and balanced. . . .' We have every reason to feel confident that we can hold our own if [Rupert] Murdoch decides to build The Journal beyond its business-reader base. In all the Murdoch parlor-gaming, I don’t hear anyone suggesting that he would attempt to match the depth of our coverage in culture, science, education, health, religion, sports, lifestyle, etc., etc. Not to mention business coverage that even devout Journal readers find they can't afford to miss."

-- Bill Keller, editor, New York Times, on Murdoch's promised Wall Street Journal challenge to Times national dominance, Oct. 16, 2007

'Gunmen' to descend on USU Spectrum in drill exercise

By USU Media Relations & Marketing

September 25, 2007 | LOGAN -- It's a drill, only a drill.

Four gunmen, armed with automatic weapons, handguns and two improvised explosive devises, will enter Utah State University's Dee Glen Smith Spectrum at 10 a.m. Saturday, killing and wounding several during a mock gymnastics meet.

The exercise is designed to test the emergency response capabilities of Utah State University, Logan City, Cache County and the Utah National Guard.

The exercise will involve more than 50 victims and emergency response teams from several local and state agencies including the Logan police and fire departments, the Cache County Sheriff's Office and Fire Department, USU police and facilities, the Bear River Health Department and the Utah National Guard.

While response teams are essential, equally important in this drill are volunteer victims from throughout the community.

"An adequate number of people willing to play the role of 'victims' is crucial to the success of this drill," said Judy Crockett, USU emergency manager. "The drill scenario requires a large-scale emergency response, one predicated on an equally large number of participants as victims."

Preparation for the disaster drill began over the summer and has involved nearly 50 people in the planning stages. Preparations included a three-hour mock-up of the disaster held around a table covering every detail of the emergency, step by step.

"We will never have the luxury of time in the event of a real disaster, but we have time now to prepare, and that is the purpose behind this exercise," said Steve Mecham, executive director of USU Public Safety. "It gives all of us a chance to test our communication systems, our response time, our backup mechanisms, our resources and our ability to think on our feet. It helps us to identify strengths and weaknesses invaluable information for saving lives. We always go on the premise of not if a disaster will strike, but when. Drills are the best way to prepare for the inevitable."

Those interested in participating in the emergency drill, or would like to observe, should contact Crockett as 435-797-0807.

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Copyright 1997-2007 Utah State University Department of Journalism & Communication, Logan UT 84322, (435) 797-3292
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