Baltimore (or is it Balitmore?) OEM has a rough first day on Twitter

The Baltimore City of Emergency Management joined Twitter today. When I first saw them via the #mdhashtag I noticed this tweet:

I found it interesting that they just now start sending out Hurricane Irene tweets during the aftermath when a Twitter account takes little time to set up. I would have thought they would’ve had an account long before now - it looks like they were just reacting to all the other Twitter successes this weekend from various state and local agencies and decided, “We better get on Twitter.”

I sent out a tweet about their account and referenced it as @BaltimoreOEM without noticing they are actually @BalitmoreOEM. They made a big typo in setting their handle up. The information on the account says it is being run by Connor Scott in the OEM office:

They have since made a tweet in apparent response to our first tweet, and it basically says better late than never. However, if you’re going to be this late to the game, you might want to make sure you actually spell your city’s name right in the Twitter handle setup.

UPDATE: They have now changed it to @BaltimoreOEM. We knew they would - that’s why we have the above screen capture.

UPDATE 2: They also took Connor Scott’s name off the account and set the name to MOEM.


School Closings for Monday, August 29, 2011

Due to the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, there are closings for Monday. The following is a list of updated closings and delays. Check back as the list is updated.

School Closings
(Last updated: 8/28 at 9:34pm)
Anne Arundel County Public Schools
Anne Arundel Community College
Archbishop Borders School
Baltimore City Community College
Baltimore City Public Schools
Baltimore County Public Schools
Baltimore Lutheran School
Calvert County Public Schools
Cecil County Public Schools
Charles County Public Schools
Chesapeake Academy
Chesapeake College
Elvaton Christian Academy
Harford County Public Schools
Harford Community College
Holy Angels Catholic School
Kent County Public Schools
Loyola Blakefield HS
Medix School (Towson)
Our Lady of Victory
Prince George’s County Public Schools
Queen Anne’s County Public Schools
Sacred Heart School - Glyndon
Seton Keough
St. Ambrose Catholic School
St. John’s the Evangelical (Severna Park)
St. Joseph Fullerton
St. Mary’s County Public Schools
St. Michael’s (Overlea)
St. Paul Lutheran (Catonsville)
St. Paul’s Lutheran Glen Burnie
St. Phillip Neri
Worcester County Schools

Other closings:

Calvert County Government
Calvert County District Court
Federal Govt. in DC - Unscheduled Leave/Telework
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center - Liberal Leave
State of Maryland - Liberal Leave for Non-Essential Employees

Other sources of closing information:
Hurricane Irene Live News Stream
Washington Post

ICYMI - VIDEO of reporter covering #mdhurricane in sewage he thinks is “sea foam”

More from Mediaite.

WMAR’s Irene Coverage is a train wreck #mdhurricane @WMAR2News

Tonight, I was watching NASCAR pre-race coverage on Speed, and flipping around to all the different news channels watching the early news about Hurricane Irene. I decided to flip over to Channel 2 (WMAR) to see what they were going to do when the ABC pre-race coverage was supposed to begin. I had seen messages on Twitter indicating that ABC affiliates in some markets were moving the race to ESPN or ESPN2 and going wall-to-wall on news coverage.

So, I made a tweet asking WMAR if they were moving the race to ESPN or ESPN2 - about a minute later (6:55 or so) - they said they would be carrying the race. They really played this up before they switched over the 7 p.m. ABC pre-race show. I was a bit surprised at the time that they were going to cut away from coverage of the Hurricane to go the race when stations in other markets were shifting to ESPN. DC local stations as early as this afternoon were even moving sports over to their digital subchannels (presumably the DC ABC affiliate did so tonight for the race too from what I heard.)

The race started after 7:30 and they had a few cut-ins during commercials or race cautions to update the situation. Then, at 8:22 WMAR cut back in with a weather update and an anchor - Jamie Costello - breathlessly and melodramatically saying that the race was moving to ESPN now because the hurricane was “a matter of safety” and “Ocean City is flooding.”

The amateur hour in the newsroom continued and then they cut to a remote shot of Justin Berk in Ocean City using his vehicle headlights for lighting since the power was out at the Hilton. He then proceeded to give the most melodramatic report for a Category 1 hurricane I’ve ever seen on any local or national network.

Understandably he might be a bit excited so I’m not going to really knock him for that. However, he then went on to give a detailed damage report on the Hilton hotel which was his host (they also hosted WBAL but the times I was watching their coverage, I never heard Shelton Dutes do that.) That’s probably at some level rude to do that to your host and a big no-no. I would expect Hilton management is very unhappy with Berk.

Then when they cut back to the studio, Wyatt Everhart got all dramatic again and talked about how they were on the main channel now because the situation was so important.

Of course, it was so important that a mere 23 minutes after moving the race to ESPN they moved the race back to Channel 2 at 8:45.

As of 9:23, the race is still on WMAR. They have their coverage on their weather channel, but there are still people without that level of cable or even people using an antenna. So much for providing a public service on the airwaves.

To emphasize the above fact, right now WMAR is the only station not showing live coverage of Hurricane Irene. At 9:25, WBAL, WBFF, and WJZ are all showing live coverage of the storm.

What should we expect from a station that has Linda So (who steals stories) working at the SEOC in Reisterstown.

Apparently their news operation is such a joke they don’t want to put it on the main channel.

Hurricane Irene Live News Stream

Live chat/stream using CoverItLive to help crowdsource news related to Hurricane Irene as it approaches Maryland. Please leave comments below with the latest from your area.

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