The news media seems to be doing a better job overall of getting the bed bug story right.
Today, there was a nice spot on Fox NY. It featured Dr. Jody Gangloff-Kaufmann (of Cornell University, the New York State Integrated Pest Management program, and the NYC Bed Bug Advisory Board), and Dr. Louis Sorkin (of the American Museum of Natural History and Entsult Associates), who demonstrated how bed bugs might harbor in the screwhead underneath a wooden chair and how bed bugs feed.
Fox reporter Dr. Sapna Parikh is seemingly unfazed by the adult and first instar nymph bed bugs feeding on her arm. I have no doubt it was Lou’s influence that ensured she had one of each, side by side, to truly demonstrate to viewers how different the two are in appearance, color, and size, as well as the before-and-after differences in the first instar nymph, after feeding for the first time.
Check it out: [non-working video now deleted]
Also, on Sunday, Doug Summers drew our attention to the following story on CBS Sunday Morning, which is also pretty good:
Of course, when reporters talk to experts, ask them the right questions, and give them enough time to talk, that makes a big difference. (This segment was over eight minutes long.) The most interesting soundbite in this piece was Dr. Gangloff-Kaufmann’s statement that
“It’s conceivable that at some point, everyone you know will have dealt with them in one way or another.”
This is, I think, a likely scenario, given how bed bugs are spreading, and how little of an orchestrated attempt we’re making to fight back, and it is a good message to get across to viewers.
I also especially appreciated the close-up footage of all the nymphs with the few adults between the upholstered furniture cushions.
And though it was a good segment overall, the CBS Sunday Morning piece had its annoying moments.
Was everyone else as irritated as socraticlogic and I by the bed bug animations which periodically ran across the screen, over and around the people being interviewed?
What is going on there?
These animated bed bugs are running around the screen while the narrator talks about Jody Gangloff-Kaufmann’s work:
Here, an animated bed bug scurries around while a woman talks about her fear of bed bugs:
Really, CBS, is this kind of embellishment necessary?!?
Still, I do think the bed bug news is getting smarter.
After all, the CBS story featured annoying animated bed bugs. And not animated versions of that other guy.