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March 1, 2010 / Dave Gorham

"Snowicane"? We Disagree

A good deal of commotion has been generated the last few days both online and in the media relevant to the recent profusion of nicknames being used for various storms.  Allow me to add to the fray: we don’t think it’s a good idea and we never have.

One of ImpactWeather’s foundational elements is that we avoid hype regardless of the impending severity of any particular storm, severe weather event or trend.  “First, do no harm” is one of the main tenets of the Hippocratic Oath.  At ImpactWeather, the first rule is “Leave the hype to the media.  Always.”  Nicknaming specific storm systems not only adds to historical confusion but is also yet another of broadcast weather’s descent from the world of science into the playpen of infotainment.

My main duty is to constantly remind businesses that may consider the free TV/radio/online or other B2C weather sources “good enough” that this information, in fact, often isn’t good enough.

Panic sells newspapers.  Your Weather Department offers level-headed, experienced forecasts.  Take your pick, but we hope you choose wisely.



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