Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Not sure whether to laugh or cry

As I do every morning when I get to work, I sit down with my Booster Juice (in this case "Mean Mocha") and get the day started by reading The Ottawa Sun. Even in my still half asleep state I could not help but do a double take when reading just the 4th story of the paper. It's not a big story, a Jack Russell terrier was stolen while a local minister and his son ran into a shop. But what caught my eye was this statement:
"On the advice of police, they are not publicizing her name (the dog's) because it could help the dog-nappers"
I have seen many stories of pets being stolen and it's always a sad event but this is possibly the first where the name is not released "On the advice of police". I never really thought about it before but it does make sense. If you start calling a dog by his/her name then they are more likely to begin accepting you as their owner. (Miller, one of my ferrets, on the other hand will ignore you no matter what you call him.)

Well that was all well and good but then I read down a little further and saw this quote (since it has already been published in the local paper I don't think reprinting it here will hurt):
""Losing Nikki is like losing a family member" Rev. Oosterman said"
That's right, only 4 paragraphs after stating the name will not be released so as not to help the criminal(s) the reporter writes it out as clear as day. There is not indication the name "Nikki" is just a placeholder type name like "Jane Doe". It just appears to be a direct quote from the poor Reverend.

I'm really hope this was just a honest mistake by a rookie reporter (they are covering a dog-napping after all but of course in Ottawa that still ranks a page 5 story, with picture) and not some sad attempt to impress someone with the fact they got a quote. Or maybe the quotation marks are just missing around the name Nikki and it was meant to be a placeholder. Either way, I think that there is a reporter and an editor walking around town today with a little egg on their faces, and rightfully so.

Here's hoping the dog-nappers in question have a change of heart and return poor "Nikki" to the Oostermans.

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Update: Nikki (and that was her name) has been returned safely to her family.

I was just browsing through old posts and figured in case anyone else wanders by I wouldn't leave them hanging. =)

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