Here’s what passes for journalism in the Steubenville story…
Dan Wetzel, who is a “Yahoo Expert” goes into a Steubenville bar. (My guess the is Spot Bar. Just a hunch.) Dan then writes an unsourced story about his supposed experience there, lays on a thick, luxurious coat of rumors and infuses every “Steubenville Sucks” meme he can find.
It’s an easy story to write. Steubenville is awful. Not a mention of Steubenville’s excellent academic reputation or the good that Big Red football program has brought to kids who grow up under tough circumstances or terror that Anonymous brought to the town.
No, Dan says Steubenville appreciates Anonymous for bringing the story to light. I haven’t met the people saying that yet.
Here’s how Dan closes the piece. Is there a contest to see who can make Steubenville look the worst?
About the only thriving business, they said, is the drug trade.
It’s not that Steubenville was ever some innocent place. It’s long been gritty and desperate, home to Dean Martin, Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder and former porn star Traci Lords, not to mention a rampant mob underworld, political corruption and crooked union bosses.
Still, after the precipitous fall, an infamous teen rape case that exposes every wart is a bit much, even here, in a bar where one patron had arrived at 9 a.m.
“You type ‘Steubenville’ into the Internet and ‘rape’ immediately comes up,” said one man. “Even before ‘Ohio.’ That sucks.”
“Ah, come on, this place is a [expletive] hellhole,” said another.
They all pretty much agreed on that, too.
Try this. Go into any bar, anywhere in the world. See if people say negative things about that location when asked. Nashville, Los Angeles, Bangkok. See if people complain about the economy. New York, London, Paris, Munich. See if drunk people bicker.
You’re an Expert!
Write that up!