Let's eliminate the word "chug" in media.

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Let's eliminate the word "chug" in media.

Post by Steam » Wed Aug 25, 2004 8:40 am

Over many years I've noted that all newspaper writers use the words "chug" or the various tenses of the word, to describe trains or railroading events. Even high speed rail stories! They HAVE to include that word someplace.

How do we educate these writers to the fact that unless they're talking about steam engines, let's stop using the "chug" discription?

Has anyone else noted this in media stories on railroading?

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Post by shortlinerailroader » Wed Aug 25, 2004 4:27 pm

Maybe they were talking about GEs or Alco's. Hehehe

I have indeed noticed a certain dimness or indifference on the part of editors and reporters concerning RRs.
--Why did it say "84 axles" when we have 20 cars?
--It counts the engine, too

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Post by Aa3rt » Wed Aug 25, 2004 5:39 pm

Steam-it's not just newspapers but electronic communications as well. I cringe whenever I hear "choo choo", but people persist in using it, although steam has been retired from regular main line service in North America for over 40 years now.

Shortlinerailroader-a certain dimness on lots of topics. A number of years ago a CSX freight collided with a MARC passenger train here in suburban Maryland. I watched the extensive news coverage the next day and noted how little the news reporters knew about the railroad and operations. It caused me to reflect on what other news stories weren't being accurately reported due to a reporter's unfamiliarity with a given topic.

Recently an amateur radio friend of mine had to respond to his workplace when a fuel line supplying a diesel generator ruptured, causing hot fuel to be sprayed on the diesel, igniting a small fire that was quickly controlled by shutting off the fuel source. However, the Washington DC media reported this as a generator "explosion" for a couple of days.

I guess part of this can be blamed on deadlines and insufficient time to research a topic but also on "reporters" who know how to look good in front of a camera but are lacking in technical inclination and background.
Art Audley, AA3RT
Moderator: Railroad Radio & Communications, Railroads in Books, Magazines, Music, TV and other Media, General Discussion: Fallen Trolley & Interurban Lines, General Discussion: Shortline, Industrial & Military Railroads,

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Post by walt » Thu Aug 26, 2004 9:38 am

Old habits die hard! :-)
Please Move to the Rear and Speed Your Ride
( Philadelphia Transportation Company)

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Post by shortlinerailroader » Sun Aug 29, 2004 3:47 pm

The media do like to sensationalize stories, reports (i. e. "explosion" instead of "fire") to increase ratings, print sales.

I have also grown tired of seeing "choo-choo" and steam locomotives in children's literature and on baby/children's clothes. It always seems to be a 2-2-0, 2-4-0 or 0-4-0 with grossly misplaced driving rods. I'm not anti-steam, but I am ready for children's books and clothes to finally "dieselize".
--Why did it say "84 axles" when we have 20 cars?
--It counts the engine, too

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