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Spotting Article--Critique And Quotes, Please  
User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 3895 times:

Hey all

I'm in the midst of putting together an article about spotting (and all that it entails), with the hopes of successfully submitting it to Newsday (newspaper). It's coming along slowly, but nicely. Before it goes any further, though, I'm going to ask for two kinds of input.


Firstly, critique what I have written so far. Here goes nothing:

Within the tightly knit, yet internationally expansive community of aviation enthusiasts and photographers, there are questions asked and micro-wars waged every day. Boeing or Airbus? Nikon or Canon? General Electric, Rolls Royce, or Pratt and Whitney? These modest arguments, respectively dealing with aircraft manufacturers, camera manufacturers, and engine manufacturers, can quickly become heated, and even evolve into a full fledged debate. Actually, something along the lines of ‘744 or A343?’, ‘D100 or 10D?’, and ‘GE, RR, or PW’ would be more of an accurate representation of the ‘aviation (photography) vernacular.’

The lingo used in simple, regular conversation between ‘spotters,’ as we have come to know ourselves, demands a double take, and usually a stupefied stare from people with an untrained ear. It truly is a language all its own, with two or three letter abbreviations for almost each airport and airline currently in service, navigational aids (navaids), departure and arrival procedures, as well as the use of the phonetic alphabet that Alpha Tango Charlie, or ATC, also known as Air Traffic Control, uses to communicate with pilots.

What all enthusiasts alike say, and how they say it, is something not likely to be clearly understood by the general public. However, there’s a bigger issue that everyone, from all walks of life, should not only be able to understand, but also be able to relate to themselves and their own personal interests. Granted, having any interest in aviation (if you are not professionally involved) warrants suspicion in this day and age, especially in the United States. Enjoying the summer sun with a group of fellow enthusiasts inside or outside the airport perimeter, usually yielding professional-grade cameras obviously attracts some degree of attention. Our ability to enjoy our hobby is important to us, but is unfortunately becoming increasingly risky and troublesome.


Please note that the last paragraph (probably) isn't complete...haven't come up with an appropriate ending for it--unless you think it's just fine.

The bold part, after having my mom just read it, seemed to confuse her a bit. The vast array of commas, ontop of all the terminology, is bound to get confusing for non-enthusiasts, so...any suggestions as far as how to simplify it, but keep the general idea?

Let me know if you think there's anything you feel should be fixed, added, taken out, replaced, rephrased, blah blah blah.

I intend to continue on with the current situation in the United States, compare it to the situation in the rest of the world (especially countries like the UK), and why we're more of a benefit, not a detriment to the 'terrorism prevention efforts'--that BAA (what does 'BAA' stand for?) flyer. I probably won't mention that incident where I was detained at LGA, as I don't know how the PAPD would react. Should I?

I initially wanted to mention A.net, but I'm not in the mood to go around asking for permission. Don't want to go quoting articles and the such, as I would have to clear it with the editors, etc.

Then, you guys come in. I also want to add quotes, from those inside and outside of the 'group'. Tell me what's on your mind, give me something specific to say. I might candidly quote you (credited accordingly), but I will clear it with you before it's set in stone. There are definately a few of you I really want to hear from...might regret this, but I'll name JeffM, ExitRow, SkyMonster, AAGold, BigPhilNYC, Ckw...lol




Overall, it's FAR from done. Give me input, input, input. I'm Johnny 5 from Short Circuit.

Thanks. Will keep the article updated.
Futt


Ah, and my mom even asked me if I wrote it. She said it sounded like something an adult would write (condescending?! lol). I DID write this, from scratch.

[Edited 2004-04-17 06:01:18]


What the FUTT?
35 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineVafi88 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3116 posts, RR: 17
Reply 1, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 3851 times:

You should throw in some *vitaly magic* into that article.

I've already told you it's very nice, but always remember the quote I gave you.





I'd like to elect a president that has a Higher IQ than a retarted ant.
User currently offlineJeffM From United States of America, joined May 2005, 3266 posts, RR: 51
Reply 2, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 3831 times:

Futt, so far so good....but I would like to know why your writing the article? Who are you trying to reach, and what is the anticipated outcome? Kind of hard to "chime in" with out knowing the the purpose.

I think that unless you have a specific agenda that you are trying to get the reader to buy in to, be completely open (include your LGA story) and let the reader come to their own conclusions.

Well done so far.


Jeff


User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Reply 3, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 3827 times:

Jeff: The objective is just to make our hobby known. Popularize it, familiarize the people with it, let them know what's going on. That's a long shot unto itself, and by no means do I anticipate any form of policy change as a result of this.

A friend of mine, after looking at my binder (which on the front I taped on the three 'Planespotting' logos Bill Anthony made, as well as the 'A.net Aviation Photographer' logo) said himself that he doesn't know of anyone else who is into aviation. "It's a very unique hobby" he said. It's true. He should read this article if it's published. Then, it might not be so 'unique' and 'eccentric'.

This article would (I gather) be placed in the 'Opinion' section of the newspaper. I'm thinking that the rest is reserved for designated contributors, reporters, etc. It's simply an opinionated piece; a rant; a story to tell. Whether or not people absorb or retain any of the information is out of my hands. This is another way to 'fight the fight', in addition to contacting authorities and officials (as you are doing in DEN).


So, ANYTHING you have the desire to 'chime in' with is not going to do anything but enhance the article. With more quotes and individual opinions, it's bound to be 'stronger'.

Whew. lol



What the FUTT?
User currently offlineJeffM From United States of America, joined May 2005, 3266 posts, RR: 51
Reply 4, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 3819 times:

Ok... I get your drift. Let me burn up a few brain cells on it. Only a few. I don't have as many as I used to...

Jeff


User currently offlineDLKAPA From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 3804 times:

Now I realise I'm not on the list with the big guys, (bows in respect), but I do have a word to say.

Given two things:

1- As most of you who hang out over in Non-Av know, I am a very liberal person, living in a very, VERY conservative area.

2- I like to photograph airplanes.

Given those two things, most people around here automatically think I'm a terrorist. Compound the fact that I go to an airport, hang out at the end of a runway, and shoot the heavies.

Just because I like to watch the steel beauties (especially in a good sunset) doesn't mean that I'm a terrorist.

Just thought I'd let that out, If you didn't bother reading my post, I don't mind, no hard feelings  Smile

DLKAPA


User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 52
Reply 6, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 3801 times:

Futt,

You have it right on...our hobby needs to be made known in America...I recall when the British spotters in Greece were arrested the NY Times ran an article about them, and called spotters and our hobby "eccentric" repeated times...not something to be proud of an this needs fixing...good for you for stepping up!

Greg



Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
User currently offlineWellHung From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 3793 times:

Without going into an entire journalism lecture, I ask, where's the hook? What would make an ordinary person interested in this? How will it affect them? What would make a newspaper run it? Once you figure that out, that is what you start the piece with. Just trying to get the hobby known is NOT GOOD ENOUGH. There are a shitload of hobbies that people aren't aware of and quite frankly don't give a shit about. How does this hobby impact them? If you don't get them interested at the start, people stop reading. Cut all the technical bs to 2 sentences. Not to be harsh, but nobody cares.

How about something dealing with the fact that many people still see airplanes as a instrument of terror, but for airliner enthusiasts they're a thing of beauty... Then go on to introduce (in brief) different aspects of airliner hobbies: photography, reg #'s, etc. And expand on that to the bigger picture.

Yes, it sucks that you have to bring terror into it, but face it, ain't no way in hell it's getting run without it. Write the article around the story, not around the hobby.


User currently offlineA340Spotter From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1982 posts, RR: 23
Reply 8, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 3748 times:

Futt,

I like your thinking about wanting to "expose" us, and I commend you for that, however a couple of things:

1. "Spotters"...um, I wouldn't classify spotters as people who debate the likes of GE v PW, etc. nor would I classify spotters as photographers. Fine line, but a spotter is more of a number chaser than a photographer, in the purist sense. Most "spotters" are from the UK and the Netherlands and there are actually not a lot of true American born number chasers, or spotters. I happen to be one and have found it interesting how the "spotters" tag has been applied over the last couple of years.

2. The opinions section usually gets used for reactionary comments, not proactive ones. You may want to write to the opinions editor with the story and try to sell it in there that way, or maybe he or she will direct the story onward. The opinion that I got published in the December 25 Houston Chronicle was in response to the HAS (Houston Airport System) using the horse mounted patrols. That led to the spotters story in early February in the Daily Court Review:
http://www.dailycourtreview.com/index.php?xst=3&category_id=9&id=821&search_data=

Read the story if you can get the link to work and maybe you'll get some good ideas as to the structure of the article...Like I said, exposure can help and up in NY, it could certainly help...

Good luck  Smile
Jeffrey



"Irregardless, it's a Cat III airplane, we don't need an alternate!"
User currently offline2912n From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 2013 posts, RR: 8
Reply 9, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 3705 times:

Futt....Without sounding like an ashol here...If you think it is tough getting things accepted at Anet, you are not prepared for submitting an article to a publication, especially one of the level of Newsday. All you are going to get from them, if you get anything at all is a "Thank you for your submission, however it does not meet with our editorial needs at this time" slip. Even if they were to run it on op/ed they would likely carve it down into less than 100 words.

My suggestion would be to try to interest one of the editors or writers there or at a smaller local paper/magazine into looking at spotting/aviation photography, the impact of terrorism on our hobby and people in general.

Looking at us with a critical eye, no one in the general public cares about our "right" to look at airplanes. There has to be a connection for Joe Blow to make with our hobby. While you may be on the right track there is a long way to go before you get published.

Tony


User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Reply 10, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 3663 times:

Thanks for the comments. Even if the following isn't directed to you specifically, take a read...




DLKAPA: Not too sure what I would take from your 'confession', but I'll make it clear that I'm not limiting the comments I want only to the people I mentioned.


USAFHummer/Greg: Thanks for the support. I think that instance was a bit more of an 'international crisis' (for lack of a better word), and my move is more of just a story. This would in no way, shape, or form warrant something in the NY Times.


WellHung: I have every intention to bring the terror aspect into the story. It's basis is why we're such a benign threat ('threat' is not even an appropriate word), and how terrorism (paranoia in general) impacts us, compared to how we impact terrorism. I'll take the hint, and cut down on the 'technical bs'. I want to try and get the aviation 'feel' in there, somewhere...

So, two things. A: How to cut down the 'bs' and keep it short and simple, but still maintain that 'element'. Maybe it just isn't as appealing to read as I think it is. B: If trying to get our hobby merely 'known' isn't good enough, would explaining our predicament with authorities nowadays be adaquate enough? What do you have in mind?

"...many people still see airplanes as a instrument of terror, but for airliner enthusiasts they're a thing of beauty..."

Great line. Would like to incorporate that as something 'Wellington Hung, of XXX City' said. Don't think you would mind living in 'XXX City', eh? lol Thanks for the input.


A340Spotter/Jeffrey: Interesting idea as to what the term 'spotter' actually means. I understand that a 'true' spotter was once a person who collected registrations and stood at the edge of the airport with a pair of Bushnells. I, myself, know of aviation enthusiasts that are not particularly interested in taking photos. Without a doubt, A.net has tainted my definition of the word 'spotter', and now it's more pertinent to 'photographer' than anything else. Thanks for setting me straight.

So, would it be more 'politically correct' to deem ourselves 'aviation enthusiasts' over and over and over again? In what context should I refer to ourselves as 'spotters'?

Your article, which I've read before and thoroughly enjoyed (great job), is focused more on simply explaining what we do. What I inted to detail is the minimial threat we have to impairing the 'terrorism-prevention efforts', and in order to properly do that, our hobby must be properly explained and conveyed.

Reading the opinion section of Newsday, it's usually filled with political editorials and the such (it's not limited to, though). This bit would definately have a place in there, by my own judgement. I've sent an email to the paper in regards to writing this, and have yet to get a response. I might've sent it to the wrong address, though, so I'll go for it again. Thanks for the support, as well.


2912n/Tony: The idea that I'm way out of my league here has bee in the back of my mind, but I have faith that if all goes well (as a result of everybody's help), it wold fit in perfectly. If it's not published, or it's severely watered down, sucks for me. I tried. Like I said to A340Spotter, I sent an email to them, and will try again.

Joe Blow may already be concerned after seeing some guy by the bushes, holding a long tube, aiming at the airplane as his ride taxied onto the active. This article would probably interest him, so he can live comfortably, reassured that it was probably just Phil and his 10D/100-400 enjoying his hobby. For the critical eye, though, there's no way this is going to appeal, or convince everybody that reads the newspaper. It probably wouldn't even grab my own eye if I were not into aviation. If they don't want to read it, they have the right not to. For those that do, though, hopefully they'd come away with a new insight into what we do. If it's even published in the first place, the editors must think that it has the potnetial to grab attention, anyway.




Thanks for all the critique thusfar. I'll get working on editing what I have so far once I eat brunch and read your replies...which better come. lol

-(Brian) Futterman



What the FUTT?
User currently offlineA340Spotter From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1982 posts, RR: 23
Reply 11, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 3 days ago) and read 3650 times:

Futt,

I think aviation enthusiasts is a much better term than spotters as that encompasses everyone from reg. collectors, photographers, airline employees with a passion for their job, safety card collectors, etc. etc.
It is funny how "spotters" has taken on a new meaning over here and that's fine. The word usually gets me to read a forum so it's not all that bad...

Jeffrey



"Irregardless, it's a Cat III airplane, we don't need an alternate!"
User currently offlineSleekjet From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 2049 posts, RR: 22
Reply 12, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 3616 times:

I agree with those who say there better be a hook.

"Enjoying the summer sun with a group of fellow enthusiasts inside or outside the airport perimeter, usually yielding professional-grade cameras obviously attracts some degree of attention."

Not to be too critical (because I admire what you're doing), but the above sentence needs to be reworked. Is "yielding" the word you want? Here's how I, an English major, would do it:

"Without a doubt, the presence of curious-looking folks armed with cameras along the airport perimeter obviously attracts attention."



II Cor. 4:17-18
User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Reply 13, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 3605 times:

OK. I reworked everything a bit. Got rid of all the aviation references, and made it short, sweet, as well as simple. Tried to cut to the chase a little quicker, and now I think it looks and sounds a bit 'cleaner'. A few notes beforehand:




A340Spotter/Jeffrey: I'm still trying to incorporate the vagueness and broadness of what a 'spotter' truly is. However, it still strongly leans towards photography, although I tried to acknowledge the regular registration logger. As the story goes on, I'll try to bring it up more often and in-depth. I'm going to leave the part where I say that we refer to ourselves as spotters. We DO refer to ourselves as spotters. We don't call each other up, and say, "Hey, want to do some aviation enthusiasm-ing today?" lol It's too much of a proper term. I consider myself an aviation enthusiast AND spotter. I doubt there are many enthusiasts who don't spot.


Sleekjet: For an English Major, that's not too shabby! lol I borrowed the general idea of what you said, however, a few words I figured did NOT have a place. For instance, 'curious looking' and 'armed'. ESPECIALLY 'armed'. lol Check it out for yourself...


Within the tightly knit, yet internationally expansive community of aviation enthusiasts and photographers, there are questions asked and micro-wars waged every day. Boeing or Airbus? Nikon or Canon? These modest questions, respectively dealing with aircraft manufacturers and camera manufacturers, can quickly become heated, and even evolve into a full-fledged debate. Actually, something along the lines of ‘744 or A343?’ and ‘D100 or 10D?’ would be a more accurate representation of the ‘aviation (photography) vernacular.’

The lingo used in simple, regular conversation between ‘spotters’, as we have come to know ourselves, demands a double take, and usually a stupefied stare from people with an untrained ear. It truly is an eccentric language, with thousands of abbreviations, as well as the use of the phonetic alphabet.

The hobby unto itself, though, is anything but eccentric.

What all enthusiasts alike say, and how they say it, is something not likely to be clearly understood by the general public. However, there’s a bigger issue that everyone, from all walks of life, should not only be able to understand, but also be able to relate to themselves and their own personal interests. Granted, having any sort of genuine enthusiasm in aviation (if you are not professionally involved) warrants suspicion in this day and age--especially in the United States. Without a doubt, a group of people with cameras around their necks, or log sheets and radio scanners who congregate in or around an airport calls for some degree of attention. Our ability to enjoy our hobby is important to us, but is unfortunately becoming increasingly risky and troublesome.





I spent a few hours (ie: six) at LGA today, and came across a few very intersting people. First, at Planeview Park (local spotting area), met three fellow spotters. One was openly very distraught by the fact that so many spotting locations are kaput, and are going very fast. Had a nice conversation with him and the other guys that were there. That's the spotter's perspective, and I think we can all agree on that.

Next, came an AA 757/767 Captain. I introduced myself as an enthusiast, and after a brief conversation, he willingly whipped out his AA business card, jotted down his personal number, and handed it to me. Said, "It's great to see enthusiasm!"..."Give me a call if you have anything to do with aviation related." Gave him a nice wave a few hours later as I watched him bring his 757 off runway 22 and over my head at 8PM bound for FLL. That's most pilots' perspective.

Lastly, while taking a breather in one of those massaging chairs infront of Brookstone, I struck up a conversation with a middle-aged mother, her husband, and teenage daughter from Brooklyn, waiting to meet up with their other daughter coming home from a trip in Florida. They became very enthusiastic towards the hobby, and seemed to be very supportive. They immediately thought that it was great hobby, and sympathized with the fact that it's getting increasingly harder. They were impressed. That's the people's perspective. To a certain extent. THAT one changes a lot.


So, you know what to do now. Critique! Thanks so far...

-Futt

[Edited 2004-04-18 03:25:15]


What the FUTT?
User currently offlineMirrodie From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 7444 posts, RR: 62
Reply 14, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 3578 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

what the futt, futternutter?  Smile

i think u have the right idea. however, i think it would be far more effective to relate to the reader.


What if that attack on the USA by terrorists was during a playoff baseball or hockey game? In other words, what if they affected some other more 'traditional' pastime? perhaps you want to lure the reader in?

the 'majority' public has a tough time trying to relate to us. They find it weird. Yet I find it weird how a good percentage of the US wastes sweet time out of their own life to watch 18 guys on a field hitting a ball with a bat.

Catching my drift?

For instance, my screensaver in the office has mostly aviation on it. Most patients find it interesting and beautiful. Then you get the occasional Yankee/Mets/insert name here cap wearing moron who says, "what are you, a plane freak?" to which they blush when I smile and say, "no more than you are a baseball freak." That seems to shut them up.

Write like you are writing to a bunch of idiots....your level of wording is too cerebral for most readers if you want to reach a wider audience.

Of course, mention airliners.net......it would provide awareness of the hobby.

hope that helps.



PS I agree with A340 Spotter, use Aviation Enthusiast. They called me a Concorde Enthusiast in that travel channel show and its appropriate without being weird.



Forum moderator 2001-2010; He's a pedantic, pontificating, pretentious bastard, a belligerent old fart, a worthless st
User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Reply 15, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 3575 times:

Mirrodie:
Catching my drift?

YES! Great analogy... My main problem, I think, is that I'm too nice. I'm a little hesitant to go off and start talking about 9-11, what-if's, etc...although I'm not one to keep sobbing over it, I know others can be easily offended by it. Hey, I'll make the statement, and if they don't like it and it makes them cry, tough for them.

You're right. It's our hobby and we're here to defend it.

So my writing is too 'cerebral', eh? I guess I've been trying for so long to impress my teachers, that I should bring it down a notch. Tough business.

As far as mentioning A.net, do I have to clear that with Johan?



What the FUTT?
User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Reply 16, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 3564 times:

I'm starting to doubt the beginning paragraph or two...let me know.

READ




Every day within the tightly knit, yet internationally expansive community of aviation enthusiasts and photographers, there are a multitude of discussions to be had and opinions to be voiced. Boeing or Airbus? Nikon or Canon? These modest questions, respectively dealing with aircraft manufacturers and camera manufacturers, can quickly become heated, and even evolve into a full-fledged debate. Actually, something along the lines of ‘744 or A343?’ and ‘D100 or 10D?’ would be a more accurate representation of the ‘aviation (photography) vernacular.’

The lingo used in simple, regular conversation between ‘spotters’, as we have come to know ourselves, demands a double take, and usually a stupefied stare from people with an untrained ear. It truly is an eccentric language, with thousands of abbreviations, as well as the use of the phonetic alphabet.

The hobby unto itself, though, is anything but eccentric.

What all enthusiasts say, and how they say it, is something not likely to be clearly understood by the general public. However, there’s a bigger issue that everyone, from all walks of life, should not only be able to understand, but also be able to relate to themselves and their own personal interests. Granted, having any sort of genuine enthusiasm in aviation (if you are not professionally involved) warrants suspicion in this day and age--especially in the United States. Without a doubt, a group of people with cameras around their necks, or log sheets and radio scanners who congregate in or around an airport, calls for some degree of attention. Our ability to enjoy our hobby is important to us, but is unfortunately becoming increasingly risky and troublesome.

For three years already, this coming September, terrorism has plagued law enforcement policies, which led to bills like the USA PATRIOT ACT being able to infringe on our most basic civil liberties. The aviation industry was also irrevocably scarred. No longer could people fly, no matter how confidently, without the brief ‘what-if?’ in the back of their mind. Plane spotters, as a result, are now in the spotlight.

To put this in perspective, consider the following. It’s a wonderful, bright and sunny Tuesday morning in September, one year into the new millennium. Thousands of people sacrifice their tickets to the turnstile attendants at their local sports venue, looking forward to a day’s worth of hot dogs, beer, and great times. Baseball, football, even soccer and hockey are traditional all-American pastimes, unlike many other hobbies—plane spotting included. What if, though, United flight 89 were bound for a massive sporting complex? How would that alter the athletics industry? Fans with face paint would suffer just as much in this hypothetical situation as aviation enthusiasts do in the real world. Or would they? Sporting events are not only massive revenue generators, but also widely accepted hobbies. For that reason alone, everything that could be done to make stadiums fill up once again quickly and profitably, would be done. When an airplane is involved in the nation’s most profound terrorist attack in history, every enthusiast is put under a microscope and labeled a terrorist, sometimes treated accordingly. If we are left alone, there are few places that have not been shut down or blocked off, as they are considered to be a ‘terrorist threat.’

Making a hobby out of collecting baseball cards, CDs, books, art, dolls, and even souvenirs or plain old junk is no more out of the ordinary than sitting in an airport, for the mere purpose of watching aircraft. Car enthusiasts, boat enthusiasts, train enthusiasts, bus enthusiasts, even walking enthusiasts don’t face the same difficulties that aviation enthusiasts do. What sets an interest in airplanes apart from all the others? Terrorists use cars and terrorists use trains and boats, and have the same potential to use those against the nation just as suddenly as they used airplanes.

Authorities across the nation, in the form of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) and similar organizations, local law enforcement, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and others, are quickly taking measures to ensure a secure airport perimeter. Enthusiasts’ eagerness to get as close to these limits, and the authorities’ desire to push us as far back is one of many things unique to this hobby. Spotters have been chased off of both airport and public property, detained more times than we care to count, and had expensive equipment confiscated, all in the name of Homeland Security and the ongoing investigation into the prevention of terrorism. If anything, their actions are hurting no one but themselves.

What the government and those who enforce policies prohibiting the photography of airplanes fail to notice is that aviation enthusiasts are a benefit, not a detriment, to the prevention of terrorism. Nobody is better suited, or willing, to essentially stand guard at an airport—free of charge—to identify and report suspicious activity. Aviation, as previously stated, is a tightly knit community, and within each city, there is a group of spotters where everyone knows everyone. Enthusiasts will have no qualms about being subjected to background checks, and the such. It truly is a win-win situation, as aviation enthusiasts would be able to thoroughly enjoy our hobby, while terrorism efforts would be able to continue efficiently and effectively.





Not done, yet...but I'm feeling mighty fine...

-Futt



What the FUTT?
User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Reply 17, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 3526 times:

So...








...waddaya think?



What the FUTT?
User currently offlineBeowulf From Singapore, joined Jul 2003, 735 posts, RR: 13
Reply 18, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 3519 times:

@Futterman

Let me give you a sandwich feedback.  Wink/being sarcastic

The article is well written. With regards to the beginning ... it's not attracting too much attention of a reader. Moreover, as one reads the first two paragraphs, one doesn't really know what your point is. In my opinion you are developing several ideas, but leave them unfinished. Now, the last two paragraphs are very good. They make a point, bring across the message, and are self-contained. Personally I don't agree with the "guarding" idea, but that's another issue. I think you should focus on identifying who your "audience" should be and what you want to tell them.

Nick


User currently offlineVafi88 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 3116 posts, RR: 17
Reply 19, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 3498 times:

I also happen to think you should post more as you go along...


I'd like to elect a president that has a Higher IQ than a retarted ant.
User currently offline2912n From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 2013 posts, RR: 8
Reply 20, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 3495 times:

Futt....

Find a copy of the MASH episode where Hawkeye is fighting for a Marine to not get deported after his tour in Korea. Hawkeye writes a story for the papers as part of the plot....I think it will put some of your writing into perspective.

You need to balance what you are writing. Remember that there are genuine security concerns around airports. Is EVERYTHING airport authorities do to secure an airport bad just because it interferes with a hobby? You need to research some about the "other" side...Why are some of these decsions made? Are they based on real concerns or just a "cover your ass" type decision. (Many of those are made. Just look at the finger pointing done by the 9-11 commision. No one wants to be on the other side of that finger again, so many will play it safe...Not right, but safe.)

"Nobody is better suited, or willing, to essentially stand guard at an airport..." Excuse me? You better be able to back up a statement like that with some hard facts...and it won't hold water. Spotters/entusiasts etc can be a great resource for security...it can also be a big hole for security. (When the terrorists took the Israeli wrestling team hostage at the 1972 Olympics they had scouted out the security system by posing as athletes and as simple sports enthusiasts....hardly a threat to anyone...Ooops.)

You are on the right track in explaining the hobby. But you need to be, pardon the expression, "Fair and balanced."

Tony


User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
Reply 21, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 3454 times:

Beowolf/Nick: So you're saying that I'm jumping back and forth, sometimes not even thoroughly explaining an idea? More or less? I can agree with you on that, as I do see some unfinished ideas that I had worked out in my head, but didn't look too good on paper. I'll keep working.

2912n/Tony: By 'fair and balanced', I assume you mean that it's biased (which it definately is), and need not be. I usually am one to point out my own faults and opposition's strengths in a situation like this, so I don't know where I went wrong. I'm working on a paragraph or two about why there is a cause for concern and how proper actions are resulting. After that, I'll probably go on to say what we can do to help...

...going back to the "There's nobody better suited or willing" statement. http://homepage.ntlworld.com/rez.manzoori/pol.jpg. It didn't come to mind the situation in the '72 Olympics, and how these two situations are identical. I'd really, sincerely like for you to get something brief together to quote you on, unless you have some objections. What do you think we can do, so authorities won't come back and say, 'Remember the hostage situation during the 1972 Olympics?'?
__________________________________________________________________

That brings me back to my request to everybody. In addition to critique, I want to quote people! I appreciate the thoughts, but no one can say them any better than you can. Maybe I can cut the crap, and you can help make this a 'fair and balanced' article about 'aviation enthusiasm' and terrorism, written not by just one enthusiast, but many.


A few last notes:
  • I eliminated the whole first paragraph. Doesn't have any substance or add anything to the article.

  • The hobby unto itself, though, is anything but eccentric. (Continues on to say) Unfortunately, with establishment of questionable security measures intended to protect the nation against terrorism in recent times, ‘planespotting’ has been given the cold shoulder by most with the power to keep our most popular viewing areas open.

  • I removed the whole last paragraph, which suggested the use of spotters as guards, until further notice or revisions.



  • -Brian



    What the FUTT?
    User currently offlineBeowulf From Singapore, joined Jul 2003, 735 posts, RR: 13
    Reply 22, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 6 hours ago) and read 3422 times:

    @Futterman

    My teachers in school used to tell me two things.
    1) After writing, go through your essay, article, etc. with a comb and remove all nonessential words that have no use, no meaning, are superfluous, etc.
    2) Link the paragraphs, make smooth transitions from one paragraph to the other.

    [I don't mean to patronize you, but I think this is general, good advice.]

    What "bothers" me a little about the essay is this. Without your initial explanation I would not know what your core message is, i.e., photographing aircraft is a fun hobby. You write about several issues (taking photos, terror, hobbies in general) which are not linked together. It's as if you had seven individual paragraphs without a connection to each other.

    Wellhung wrote earlier that you should tailor your essay to your readers. This will determine how academic your writing should be. I don't know what kind of paper Newsday is, but I assume it's a "general interest" paper ... so, try to limit geek things.  Wink/being sarcastic If you are controversial, it's absoultely fine, but as 2912n wrote, you have to back up your statements. I think a controversial essay is more fun to read than just mainstream bla-bla, but you have to base it on sources or at least argue convincingly why you think things should be so-and-so. What else ... oh, make it interesting, get the readers hooked, start with a catchy phrase.

    I have a bad conscience because who am I to criticize you because I *commend* for doing this.  Big thumbs up

    Nick

    [Edited 2004-04-20 15:12:40]

    User currently offlineFutterman From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1301 posts, RR: 43
    Reply 23, posted (10 years 8 months 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 3395 times:

    Beowulf/Nick: I always use those two tips; they're more like common knowledge and general rule of thumb. I've been using them a bit too much though, constantly going through, editing either words, sentences, or whole sections, and then trying to make it flow.

    It gets very confusing and frustrating to go back and try to apply the new suggestions each time.
    ____________

    So, while everyone else in my English class was discussing 'Lord of the Flies', I came to the conclusion that I'll start anew. With a whole new opening line--one that'll hopefully be interesting and an attention-grabber. It's very short, sweet, and to the point. More or less...lol It should be easier to start from scratch like that.

    Don't take my word for it, though. See for yourself:
    “You’re the only person I know with that kind of hobby…It’s cool, it’s unique.” said a friend of mine, after reading the assortment of pro-planespotting logos I had laminated onto the front of my school binder.

    “It’s really great to see enthusiasm!” commented an American Airlines captain, hunched over a hot beverage in La Guardia’s food court, relaxing before his 8PM departure to Ft. Lauderdale.

    “Airplanes? What kind of hobby is that? Get a real hobby…like baseball or something.” barked a Port Authority officer at me and my friend, while being briefly detained at La Guardia.


    Why were we detained? Let’s backtrack a bit—why were we at the airport in the first place? Like so many others, we are aviation enthusiasts, and our hobby of ‘planespotting’ is easily defined. It literally is the ‘spotting’ of ‘planes’. Be it by hobbyists who prefer to take photographs, or create logs of the registrations (tail numbers) for each aircraft they see. Some purely collect airline memorabilia, from barf bags to ticket stubs, or thoroughly enjoy working professionally for the aviation industry. Others, and this is essentially what it all amounts to, just go to the airport, or relax around the perimeter simply to spend the day watching aircraft in all their glory.


    Two things:
  • How would the 'conflict' of punctuation be resolved? '"Blah.", says Brian.' Would there be a comma after the quotation? Do I put punctuation inside the quotations?

  • Does the second paragraph rant on too much about the hobby itself? Or is it just perfect? I like to think so...it encompasses what all the various aspects of aviation enthusiasm are, etc.


  • It'll go on to the pre-discussed issue of terrorism, and why the paranoia is legit 9 times out of 10.


    -Brian "I WANT TO QUOTE YOU" Futterman



    What the FUTT?
    User currently offlineBeowulf From Singapore, joined Jul 2003, 735 posts, RR: 13
    Reply 24, posted (10 years 8 months 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 3384 times:

    @Futterman

    Brian, I may be able to answer the comma question. And this from a damn foreigner.  Wink/being sarcastic Well, I consulted an "intelligent" book, "A Writer's Reference" by Diane Hacker.

    Here, on page 270, under "Periods and Commas" it reads.

    Always place periods and commas inside quotation.

    "This is a stick-up," said the well-dressed young couple. "We want all your money."


    Thus,
    "Blah," says Brian. "Would there be a comma after the quotation? Do I put punctuation inside the quotations?"

    but ...
    "Damn it's late!" mumbled Nick looking at the watch. "I need to hit the sack."

    No comma with a question mark or an exclamation mark.

    Now the "hobby" paragraph.  Smile After reading it I thought to myself these people must be weird. I understand it's fun to go to the airport and just watch people, but I wouldn't tell this to anyone. May be just me though! Big grin It provides too much information in extreme densiity. Kind of hard to digest. Maybe in context it's better.

    With regards to applying new suggestions over and over again. Well ... it doesn't get better later on. I have been working on a presentation for my boss for two days. Today he looked at it and said he wants it completely different. So I had to do it all over again, and I spent a happy evening at the office. But see ... you learn from this. Again asking too many people is a mistake, too. In German there is a saying "Zu viele Köche verderben den Brei." Yeah, not much of use for you unless you speak German. "Too many cooks spoil the broth."

    Can't think of anything else. I'm sure, tomorrow I can redo the presentation again.  Laugh out loud I better get to bed.

    Nick


    25 Ckw : Just my opinion ... Most of your readers are not interested in Nikons, Canons, Airbus, Boeing etc. ... or for that matter spotters. They want "human i
    26 Futterman : Beowulf/Nick: Duly noted, thanks for looking that up. Or, maybe I have Diane Hacker to thank for that! Don't feel alone with your tendency to watch pe
    27 Ckw : Well the other quotes may come into play at some point - what I'm suggesting is less "explaining" and more "telling". Start with a bit of drama, then
    28 Futterman : How's this for starters. Again. “Airplanes? What kind of hobby is that? Get a real hobby…like baseball or something.” barked a Port Authority of
    29 Post contains images Beowulf : @Futterman Brian, you bring up a tough case for correct comma use in your post (reply #26). "Too many cooks spoil the broth", and in my case, that was
    30 Jakbar : Futt - One thing I learned early on was that it's always best to have people critique a finished product rather than individual installments of the fi
    31 Futterman : Today during my free period in school, I dropped off what I had written, as well as the majority of this thread, in the English Office. My teacher sai
    32 Vafi88 : Futt, you realize you're probably getting a paper with an A or a B or C or etc.. on it... right? Hehe
    33 Post contains images Beowulf : @Vafi88 Don't give away the surprise, i.e., the grade. I already bought a red pen *just* for this. @Futterman I never said nor implied you're a hypocr
    34 Futterman : Vafi88/Vitaly: It's incomplete! Let's just hope it doesn't have an effect on my midterm... lol Beowulf/Nick: I'm saying, myself, that I'm a hypocrite.
    35 Post contains images Beowulf : @Futterman I know an adolescent boy (and men in general) think of girls/women more than once a day. Why would adolescent boys think about whores so of
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