Here was my prediction for Tropical Inconvenience Irene: a half-inch of rain and 20 mph winds. As it turned out, I wasn’t that far off, at least for those of us who live on the North Shore.
But does it necessarily follow that the media overhyped what turned out to be the Storm of the Week? At the Daily Beast, Howard Kurtz excoriates cable news, writing that “the tsunami of hype on this story was relentless, a Category 5 performance that was driven in large measure by ratings.”
Kurtz’s point is that the storm got the coverage that it did mainly because it was heading toward New York City, and it’s hard to disagree. But Irene has caused tremendous damage in the South, and flooding could be heavy in western Massachusetts and southern Vermont later today.
What I’d like to know is whether there is reason to believe Irene was overhyped from the beginning — or if this was a legitimate potential disaster that just happened to fizzle out.