The "Top 10 Safest Cities" article cited in the LVN comes to us from a website called "Movoto Blog: The Lighter Side of Real Estate." They have an interesting shtick, and seem to be quite successful at it. They invent a topic, find ten cities that can be reasonably associated with it, write it up and then get the big news covered in the papers and blogs associated with those places. Something that results in a lot of coverage, effectively driving web traffic to their site. All done with the intention of making Movoto an attractive place for advertisers to spend some major marketing dollars.
And Movoto does go after local media coverage quite aggressively. After they had just published their article about the Top 10 Safest Cities in California (link), I received the following e-mail from some dude named Devon telling me about all of the excitement regarding Sierra Madre. Here it is:
From: Devon Buechler
Date: Tue, Jun 10, 2014 at 5:56 AM
Subject: Sierra Madre Among Safest Places in California
Hey John. It's Devon from Movoto, the real estate research blog. Today we published an article ranking the safest places in California. The list was found by looking at crime rates from 2012 in 365 different areas across the state that have populations over 10,000 residents.
Sierra Madre was found to be ranked the 8th safest place in the state. Here is a link to the article: http://www.movoto.com/blog/top-ten/safest-places-in-california/
I thought this would be good news to share with the residents of Sierra Madre. Feel free to share or link to any part of the article or slideshow. Take Care, Devon
Being pretty much suspicious of most everything, and not really likely to post anything here that doesn't directly coincide with what I consider to be this blog's primary mission (that being to tell the truth about the abysmal ethical condition of government in California), I sent my new pen pal Devon this return e-mail:
A couple of things. The All American City designation came in 2007, so it isn't terribly recent. Also Sierra Madre has a population of less than 11,000, so I am having trouble wrapping my head around that "per 100,000" figure.
So you know, my house was robbed of about $7,000 in computer equipment a few years back. It has made me a little skeptical about these kinds of reports.
It is true, my house was robbed a while ago. It even made Frank Girardot's Crime Scene Blog. The post was called "Blogger Burglarized in Sierra Madre," and you can read all about it by clicking here.
So anyway, apparently I am not the only publisher of a news venue in Sierra Madre to receive a good news note from Devon. Since then the Movoto report detailing Sierra Madre's inclusion in their "Top Ten Safest Places In California" list has been written about in the Sierra Madre Weekly, Sierra Madre News.net, Crown City News, various official City of Sierra Madre media outlets, and, of course, the aforementioned Looney Views News. Quite a coup for old Devon.
And when you consider that there are nine other cities on his list, all of whom probably have newsies that fell all over themselves to push the Movoto cause, well, it's a happy day for Devon. I hope he was adequately rewarded for his successful work.
As you know, we aren't too big on publishing press releases here. I personally find the practice to be lazy and kind of dishonest. Nobody who regurgitates somebody else's publicity mailings should ever be allowed to call themselves a news outlet, because they're not. At least in my opinion. They're just filling space with neutered content, which is about as journalism averse as you can get.
Nor am I very happy when I discover that what has been published here has also been covered everywhere else. We prefer The Tattler to be different from all of those other fellows, a place where readers know they can find unique and quite often original content. Thankfully we've almost always been able to achieve that goal.
But this is in no way meant to be a slap at Movoto or Devon. After all, they did say something very nice about Sierra Madre. Plus I suspect it made SMPD Chief Giannone happy to read some good news for a change. Larry works hard and probably feels that he doesn't get anywhere near the credit he deserves. Though I seriously doubt he would ever actually say it.
So I went over to the Movoto website and looked through some of the many "Top 10" articles they have published. There really are quite a few of them. And while the one that I have selected for inclusion with this post deviates quite a bit from the law enforcement theme expressed in their "Top 10 Safest Cities In California" article, it does reveal a little more about what they are up to here.
Check it out:
The highest article in America goes on like this for a while longer. If you care to read the rest of it, you can do so by clicking here.
All of you dads out there do have a great Father's Day. I am sure that I will as well.