Monday, September 24, 2007

For MSNBC, hip + fuel-efficient + cheap = DUMB

Sign in to your Hotmail account, and you are welcomed by vapid headlines linking to MSNBC content. After a long line of zingers, ("Too Tall to Date?"), here is the latest, which proclaims the environmentally friendly, 40 mpg (estimated), small footprint Smart Car to be "dumb" for seemingly no other reason than its name invites a not-so-clever inverse adjective. Granted, the U.S. distributors of the car invite such mockery, claiming that the cars are produced in "smartville," wherever that is, but MSNBC's cheeky headlines start to annoy, especially when they are followed by nothing that backs them up--in this case an interview with Smart USA's president David C. Schembri, who discusses the vehicle's safety features, gas mileage, and thirty thousand preorders. Like many other major media outlets, MSNBC misses the mark, putting an oddly negative spin on what might have been reported as an interesting (and to some of us, heartening) public cry for a smaller, more fuel-efficient automobile.

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