Severe Weather Alert!

I've always been boggled by the weird preoccupation our local news stations have with weather. It's like they exist to give us a weather forecast & if they can squeeze in anything else, they'll mention something here or there about the war or bird flu or that gas is quickly reaching the price of platimum.

Weather used to be a small segment of the newscast. If there was a storm of some sort, they'd inform you that we'd be getting a storm, then they'd go back to reporting the news.

Today's news is obsessed with weather. If Youngstown is getting a light rain, WPXI will preempt the Olympics to do a "severe weather report". And frankly, their definition of severe & mine are vastly different.

Remember when Kennywood was hit by a mini tornado? That's probably the last storm we had that I would consider "severe". Everything else is just a thunderstorm & what's the big deal? It's not as though Pittsburgh is in the middle of tornado alley & they're doing some sort of public service that will save lives.

It's insulting to viewers' intelligence. Are we supposed to stay indoors lest we drown because -- without this dire warning -- perhaps we'd all be inclined to stand out in the gentle spring rain with our mouths open?

I suppose it would be funny if it didn't prevent us from getting news or watching primetime network programming. I wonder if other areas have the same problem or if it's unique to Pittsburgh. You know, there's that weird relationship between our own Sen. Rick Santorum & some odd for-profit companies that want to charge for weather information, so maybe it's just us.

It was a big deal not long ago because he wanted to stop the National Weather Service from just giving people weather reports, lest his supporters go out of business. If I started a company that sells something that's already available for free, would one of our most powerful US Senators have my back?

I may look into this. Think about it. There are all kinds of free things you could rip-off but how do you force suckers to pay for it? Maybe I could start a podcast that consisted of me listening to a local radio station & then playing whatever song they were playing. Only, Santorum would limit their radio signal thereby forcing many residents to subscribe to my "service" in order to continue listening to DVE.

Maybe he could force the local papers to charge $5.00 per daily paper. Then I could charge for blog subscriptions & summarize today's PG or Trib for you. You get the idea. It's worth consideration. Since your product is already available for free, your start-up costs are limited to lobbying costs. That means overhead is really low in comparison to starting an actual business the old-fashioned way (coming up with a good idea that people are willing to pay for).

Let's make this a blog for young entrepreneurs. I want to hear your ideas. Maybe we can make this work.


At 5/18/2006 3:03 PM, Anonymous vogmansteve said...

http://www.wunderground.com good weather

At 7/06/2006 11:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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