Wednesday, 6 May 2009
Silly news story with me in the picture
Did you see this picture in the paper yesterday?
This was actually during a press conference held by a Taipei City councilwoman, and she was trying to make a point of how narrow and small the carriages for the new Neihu metro line is. The girl across from me is a reporter from PTS and the two guys in the back are reporters from ETTV and TVBS (boys are always goofing off...).
I actually canned the story and thought the press conference a waste of our time.
She was arguing that it was much smaller than the Muzha line, so more people would have to squeeze into a smaller space, therefore increasing the occurrence of theft and sexual harassment. She was also saying that people would not be able to push baby strollers, wheelchairs and suitcases through the carriage. But the facts are, the Neihu line has a greater capacity than the Muzha line because there are more trains running per hour and the space between the doors on either side of the carriage is actually wider than those on the Muzha line. In addition, there are closed circuit TV cameras inside each carriage. In the area of common sense, when people get on the train and have a baby stroller, wheelchair or suitcase to push, they stay close to the door and wait to get off at their destination station. Near the doors, there are no seats, just a barrier-free area large enough for a wheelchair to be turned around at the very least.
The only point I could agree with her was her request for at least one carriage in each train to be cleared of seats so that strollers, wheelchairs and people with suitcases could have more space in that one car.
Common sense aside, the councilwoman had some of the data from the metro officials on her hands prior to the PC, but perhaps just ignored them. I guess like Michel says, to get exposure, politicians do and say anything to get the press to come, and the criticism and a second chance for them to clear up the "misunderstanding" is a second exposure.