Thursday, August 7, 2014

What one finds on closer scrutiny...

They say timing is everything. Sometimes the timing is, well, ill-timed. On the same day (Aug 7) that the media were reporting better pay -- well-justified, I must add -- for Home Team frontline officers...

TODAY. Aug 7
...this Home Team ad appeared!

ST, Aug 7
It's time to change the ad's tag line!

Meanwhile, people have started reacting to the proposed amendment to the law to penalise motorists who hold and use their mobile device for any of its functions while driving their vehicle. But someone thought the legislation had already been passed by Parliament (which had met earlier in the week) and he sent out this message on WhatsApp:

ST put its story on the public's reaction to the proposed law on its first Home page (Aug 7)

It is a competently written story by three young reporters but closer inspection (I know, I'm supposed to "retire happy") shows up shoddy copy editing:

The story's introduction refers to "motoring experts". From an old-school journalist's perspective, the label "expert" should be sparingly used. One has to be absolutely sure the quoted expert is really so (for instance, as acknowledged by his or her peers in the chosen field) before such a label may be used. Sadly, one finds "experts" everywhere in stories in our local media (not just in ST) these days.

More glaringly, there are no "motoring experts" cited in the ST story above! Mr Bernard Tay may be president of the AAS and he certainly would be very familiar with road safety issues but I doubt if he will want to call himself a motoring expert (which begs the question, "What is a motoring expert?").

I am also certain the lawyer quoted, Mr Chia, and the safety driving school manager quoted, Mr Pereria, will not want to be called motoring experts (incidentally, the second name here should be Pereira, not Pereria; all names used in copy are supposed to be double-checked).
I'll wrap up with some strange road signs (all from elsewhere, not Singapore):

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