On Ethics

Hurricane Irene Coverage: Hype or Helpful?

New Jersey was especially hard hit by Hurricane Irene with thousands of residents forced into shelters due to flooded homes. i i

New Jersey was especially hard hit by Hurricane Irene with thousands of residents forced into shelters due to flooded homes. Spencer Platt/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Spencer Platt/Getty Images
New Jersey was especially hard hit by Hurricane Irene with thousands of residents forced into shelters due to flooded homes.

New Jersey was especially hard hit by Hurricane Irene with thousands of residents forced into shelters due to flooded homes.

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

As the East Coast battened down last weekend for Hurricane Irene, NPR listeners in other parts of the country reached for their computers to email us.

"Enough already! Living on the sunset side of the country I think you easterners are a bunch of whiners," wrote Daniel O'Leary, from Missoula, MT.

Richard Mandl, from Canoga Park, CA wrote, "Surviving restaurant and subway closures ain't suffering, folks. A little perspective, please."

In the aftermath, more listeners reacted.

"You ought to be ashamed by the hype you used on the dangers of the hurricane. You made it sound like New York was going to fare worse than New Orleans," wrote Mauricio Gutierrez, from Boston, MA.

After any large story makes the news – storms, unexpected natural disasters, man-made disasters, etc. – listeners contact us saying the story was over covered or under covered.

Our ears perked up on your behalf Thursday during Talk of the Nation's segment–Hurricane Irene Coverage: Hype, or Helpful?. Located in Washington, D.C., we are prone to agree with the no-coverage-is-enough side. But then, I have been called a wuss.

You might listen in on the national talk with host Neal Conan and arrive at your own conclusion.

Lori Grisham contributed to this report.

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