Toledo Talk

Toledo gang investigative report series starts Sunday

I would have put this in The Blade thread. Hoever, I did not want anyone to miss the series. So, forgive me for starting a separate thread.

Toledo gangs series

created by paulhem on Apr 26, 2013 at 12:12:13 pm     News     Comments: 250

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I'd like to see more lawsuits. And a universally adversarial tone in the press towards government organizations and officials in general. We desperately need it.

If they don't do it, who else has the resources to? Good for the Blade on this one. Now keep gunning for malfeasance in government no matter who it offends or where it is.

Unfortunately, my call will most likely go unheeded.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 01:48:28 pm     #   1 person liked this

justread:

Here's what the publisher and editor-in-chief, vice chairman of BCI says:

"In the final analysis, the gang map is not a matter of the newspaper’s right to know, but the people’s right to know. The Blade is merely the surrogate and servant of the people of Toledo. For only an informed public can govern itself."

posted by paulhem on Jul 17, 2013 at 01:56:41 pm     #  

Thank God that we will have two gang maps. One that the police have prepared to use in controlling the gang problem, and one that the Blade prepared for use in controlling the Bell problem.

Am I safer now?

posted by justread on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:04:33 pm     #  

The lawyers all made $$$ with it going to court

posted by Hoops on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:10:15 pm     #   1 person liked this

If we are supposed to govern ourselves, why does a public that is against red light cameras subjected to them? Why doesn't the Blade, who is our surrogate and servant, go after them?
Why aren't they on the ballot so we have representation?

Where is the outrage? No dogs involved?

posted by justread on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:14:02 pm     #   1 person liked this

Nolan_Rosenkrans posted at 10:12:38 AM on Jul 17, 2013:

FYI, The Blade won its suit against the city over TPD's gang map.
http://www.toledoblade.com/Courts/2013/07/17/Court-rules-city-must-turn-over-its-gang-map-to-Blade.html

posted by Ace_Face on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:22:38 pm     #   2 people liked this

justread: You need to read this piece, written about 3 years ago, from Glenn Greenwald (yes, the same guy in the middle of the current Edward Snowden fiasco). Might explain why there is selective outrage in media at various people and items.

Salon.com (2010): Our Hard-Core, Adversarial Press Corps

On Friday, CNN’s Ed Henry posted a series of giggly, adolescent updates on his Twitter feed, describing the events that took place at a “beach” party thrown by Joe Biden, at the Vice President’s mansion, for various “reporters” and White House officials.

I personally don’t think that these types of interactions “violate journalistic ethics” because I don’t think such a thing exists for them. Rather, all of this just helpfully reveals what our nation’s leading “journalists” really are: desperate worshipers of political power who are far more eager to be part of it and to serve it than to act as adversarial checks against it — and who, in fact, are Royal Court Spokespeople regardless of which monarch is ruling. That’s why they’re invited into the heart of Versailles to frolic with the King’s most trusted aides: it’s their reward for loyal service as Court courtiers.

Who wants to criticize someone who was nice enough to invite you to his beach party and whose wife paid attention to you, established your importance, and gave you self-esteem by chasing you with a water gun? Why risk not being invited the next time?

-----------------

As I stated before, good for the Blade on this one. We need more...preferably more exposure of how local government and the politicians involved are letting us down in Toledo (i.e. unfulfilled promises, waste, fraud, "where is all the money going?", etc....more than simply getting a gang map). It would hopefully help turn around the drastic trend of declining confidence in newspapers both nationally and locally.

A similar sentiment was expressed in USA TODAY a few weeks ago. The editorial focused upon "broadcast news," but the sentiment can easily translate to newspapers:

So what to do about this state of affairs, assuming that the broadcast networks really are interested in representing everybody's views?

First, hire some reporters and editors who understand how important it is for the media to be a watchdog on the government. Without such, after all, there really is no way of keeping an eye on our public servants. Hiring reporters who produce news stories that expose waste, inefficiency, and counterproductive results when they issue from governmental programs would be a nice counterpoint to the reports of "consumer affairs" and "environmental" reporters.

Second, use economic reporters with a marketplace perspective, rather than political reporters, more often on stories that are fundamentally economic in nature. "ObamaCare" is a good example. So are the numerous aspects of our current fiscal and monetary policies, from sequestration to the "Quantitative Easing" of the Federal Reserve.

Third, avoid the overuse of "horse race" journalism — who benefits politically — in stories about regulations and congressional legislation. Such perspectives may be of interest to politicians and political junkies, but they often fall short in explaining the nuts and bolts of complex policy issues.

It's a good start...

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:37:47 pm     #  

City says they will appeal.

posted by Nolan_Rosenkrans on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:37:51 pm     #  

Nolan_Rosenkrans posted at 03:37:51 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

City says they will appeal.

Awesome. Keep fighting.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:39:28 pm     #  

justread: You need to read this piece

Ok. I just read it. :) (For those who didn't, it's pretty much about cozy parties between the press and whom they cover. Including some really dumb looking water gun fights at the Biden mansion. Point being, would David Halberstam engage in this? Or, more directly, is it a conflict of the ethics and standards that journalism claims and does it color the coverage.
Based on the impact of such "cultivation" work in the private sector, I would say it does have an impact.

So, Bob Woodward aside, what does the average joe actually DO with a "gang map," and what are the seen and unforeseen ramifications of releasing them?

If someone answers with "because they are public record" I am going to kill this adorable puppy that I have secured for bargaining purposes.

posted by justread on Jul 17, 2013 at 04:35:43 pm     #  

Because they are public record. Now kill your puppy. But don't blame me for the puppy's death. Blame the facts.

Judges Mark Pietrykowski and Thomas Osowik, of the Sixth District Court of Appeals in Toledo, voted to release the map.

“Accordingly, it is undisputed from the record that release of the map would not reveal any specific confidential investigatory technique or procedure,” the appeals court noted during its ruling on July 12.

During testimony, Officer Bill Noon described the map and testified that he created it based on information gathered from confidential informants, surveillance, crime reports, field interviews, and felony crime logs.

He further stated, however, that there is nothing on the map that would reveal a particular investigative technique that led to that information, or that would reveal any source of information.

Other than revealing that the police department knows where the gangs operate, Officer Noon stated that nothing on the map identifies any location that the Toledo Police Department is watching.

Why are you so worried about what the average Joe will think about the data?

The info is either relevant, or it's not. Since you are in the latter camp, then just ignore it, repair your ox, and move on.

posted by jr on Jul 17, 2013 at 05:26:28 pm     #  

I guess if I could believe that the Blade's motive was "Doing what's best for Toledo", I'd cheer. But, the reality is, I've seen the Blade twist stories to fit their beliefs and agenda.

This gang story seems to be a straightforward attempt to win some kind of publishing award or recognition. What good is it? Has anyone really looked at the map and by doing so, improved their life or safety? I don't think so. Besides, some of the territory claims and gang names are questionable. I've asked before, "What constitutes a gang to be mentioned?" Is there an application downtown to fill out? Gang name, gang colors, turf (please describe with cross streets), and sketch your gang sign.

Attorneys are making money arguing over something that has slightly more value than a Opal Covey for mayor yard sign.

Like I've suggested before, investigate the waste, fraud, and abuse of the city departments. Oh, that's right, you wouldn't want to bite the hand that feeds you. How else would you get your "scoops" spoon-fed to you by the mayor's office?

posted by hockeyfan on Jul 17, 2013 at 05:29:35 pm     #  

ah, one more point. If the Blade is so concerned with getting information to the public, why do you still have the "web block" on your site? It's important that the Blade gets the gang map for it's readers, but they'll have to pay to see it. There's a story today about how a West Toledo suspect is extremely dangerous, but you can't read about it unless you pay to see it.

If you're going to fly the "We really, really care about Toledo's residents" flag, then let us read the articles pertaining to our safety.

posted by hockeyfan on Jul 17, 2013 at 05:38:43 pm     #   1 person liked this

the blade is a for profit entity... they need to pay their writers / printers etc.

posted by upso on Jul 17, 2013 at 05:51:33 pm     #   4 people liked this

hockeyfan posted at 06:38:43 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

ah, one more point. If the Blade is so concerned with getting information to the public, why do you still have the "web block" on your site? It's important that the Blade gets the gang map for it's readers, but they'll have to pay to see it. There's a story today about how a West Toledo suspect is extremely dangerous, but you can't read about it unless you pay to see it.

If you're going to fly the "We really, really care about Toledo's residents" flag, then let us read the articles pertaining to our safety.

Most likely, you'll get the information for free from their television partner (13ABC) on a nightly newscast, with pertinent information posted on their freely available website.

I don't think the Blade pursued this just to keep a lid on it for their customers. As an exclusive for a bit of time, maybe. But eventually and in short order, that map will be freely available to just about anyone with a mouse and a heartbeat.

Besides, most people who live in a gang area know they live in a gang area. Like the old saying goes, you don't need a watch to know what time it is. The information on the map is not of pressing timeliness to the preservation of life or property.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 05:57:32 pm     #  

Upso-Yes, I'm aware the Blade is a profit entity. But saying that they are suing to get the gang map for the people or that the people have a right to know is a bunch of key words and tricky phrases.

Why not just say that they need the map to fight terrorism and "It's for the kids".

oldhometown, I agree but I was trying to say that if they are so concerned with getting information to the public, why not post the stories that concern citizen safety without blocking them. I see the headline about a dangerous suspect running loose, but I can't get the details or information unless I catch a newscast or find their freely available website. I don't even know where that is. My internet gives me the headlines from the Blade. When I forget about the block I click on the headline to learn more and then "whammo" I'm blocked. By that time, I've lost interest.

I do not like that the Blade is trying to portray themselves as having the public's interest in mind, but really it's only when there's money to be made. I'd have more respect for them if they just came out and said, we can sell more papers when we get the official gang map. Not because people have a right to know. I'm calling a spade a spade.

posted by hockeyfan on Jul 17, 2013 at 06:36:37 pm     #   1 person liked this

I understand HF.

Perhaps they will provide a pdf version of the actual map (i.e. "the public record") and paywall their analysis of said document.

I can't get the details or information unless I catch a newscast or find their freely available website. I don't even know where that is.

www.13abc.com is the Channel 13 website. They have some sort of partnership with the Blade, for better or for worse.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 06:40:53 pm     #  

"I guess if I could believe that the Blade's motive was "Doing what's best for Toledo", I'd cheer."

If I could believe government when it states that it will be open and transparent, I would cheer.

posted by jr on Jul 17, 2013 at 06:49:38 pm     #  

So I bold it and even capitalize it, cause I know how tempting it is to answer a similar, yet different question if you don't stop to think before you jump.

what does the average joe actually DO with a "gang map," and what are the seen and unforeseen ramifications of releasing them?

And I STILL get:

Why are you so worried about what the average Joe will think about the data?

"Do with" equals "think about." I didn't raise the question of what the average Joe thinks about it.

If it is so vitally important that this information is placed in my hands, why am I not allowed to ask what we, the average Joe is supposed to do with this information?

Whatever. This thread was a promotional spam bastard anyway.

posted by justread on Jul 17, 2013 at 06:56:05 pm     #   2 people liked this

what does the average joe actually DO with a "gang map,"

Kind of what we're doing now--kvetching.

But with a gang map, rather than without.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:04:36 pm     #  

Upso-Yes, I'm aware the Blade is a profit entity. But saying that they are suing to get the gang map for the people or that the people have a right to know is a bunch of key words and tricky phrases.

paying (subscribers, and people who buy papers at the news stands) citizens will tell non paying citizens. you don't need a subscription to get the info.

posted by upso on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:08:41 pm     #  

upso posted at 08:08:41 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

Upso-Yes, I'm aware the Blade is a profit entity. But saying that they are suing to get the gang map for the people or that the people have a right to know is a bunch of key words and tricky phrases.

paying (subscribers, and people who buy papers at the news stands) citizens will tell non paying citizens. you don't need a subscription to get the info.

You also can visit any of the Toledo Public Libraries, all of which receive the newspaper daily. You may read it free of charge.

There are ways around the subscription charge. Just longer and more annoying now that the internet can bring so much to our computer screens.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:14:20 pm     #  

oldhometown posted at 08:04:36 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

what does the average joe actually DO with a "gang map,"

Kind of what we're doing now--kvetching.

But with a gang map, rather than without.

I'll take it.
Ok.
Next question:
Are they gonna include some kind of preface from the police in terms of guiding the interpretation? Will this potentially further isolate non-gang residents who live in newly identified "gang territories" by increasing acts of "redlining" by businesses, insurance companies, potential investors or citizens? Say that I live on a street that doesn't have any gang activity, but the map says that somebody claimed it. Can an internet search cowboy decide that my house is in gangland?

We live in complicated times. It's important that somebody stops to ask the complicated questions, even if the self-appointed media representatives operating out of a self-described righteousness operating in a parallel democracy won't.

posted by justread on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:25:34 pm     #  

I tried to see the picture and read the description of the dangerous gang member who is on the loose in West Toledo right now, but ironically... I don't have the right to know.

:)

posted by justread on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:35:47 pm     #   2 people liked this

just log into "chrome"
and open an "incognito" window. you can look at the blade without worry
every time it puts up a new block, just close your window, re-open and go to the toledoblade.com

free for all!

posted by nits on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:42:00 pm     #   1 person liked this

The Blade can raise rates, charge to view their website, etc., but personally, I can get the same stories and headlines other places without paying a cent. The Blade's sister paper, The Pittsburgh Post Gazette, is free online. I realize that they have a bigger market and customer base, but I'll go to that site, CNN, Yahoo, etc. to get the news instead of paying to look at the Blade online. I find it hard to believe that if the online site was free, subscription numbers would drop significantly.
Maybe instead of trying to nickle and dime subscribers, they should get rid of the fluff reporting like the Barbara Hendel society stories. Is there a real purpose to that column besides letting people who think they're really important read about themselves, what function they attended, and what beverage flowed there?

Personally, I will not subscribe to the Blade for the following reasons.
1-Biased stories and hidden agendas in their reporting.
2-Their customer service. i.e. delivery, was horrible. Wet papers, missing papers, papers that somehow grew wings and flew places that I had to hunt to find it, just made the entire process difficult.
3-The constant changing rates. I cannot tell you the number of times I'd pay for a certain term subscription, then find out someone else paid less for the same, or after I renewed, I'd get an offer to subscribe for less. If you are already a customer and have to call and ask for the best rate, they don't appreciate you.

I'm just one former customer. Not gonna make a difference one way or another, but it isn't worth 5 cents to me.

posted by hockeyfan on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:45:34 pm     #  

"Whatever. This thread was a promotional spam bastard anyway."

justread, why don't you install a Web browser that permits you to visit more than a couple websites.

And you never addressed this basic question:

"If, according to you, the info serves no community benefit, then why has city government chosen to hide the info for so long?"

"If it is so vitally important that this information is placed in my hands, why am I not allowed to ask what we, the average Joe is supposed to do with this information?"

Nobody claimed that you could not ask questions, so why are you writing fiction? And who in this thread claimed that the city's gang map info was "vitally important?" Again with the fiction.

I personally do not care what anyone else thinks about the information if it gets published. Why do you care what others will think?

The court has deemed the map to be public information. Boring, mundane, relevant, useless. Again, that depends upon the information consumer. It's just information.

How many times do you have to be told that you have the choice to ignore the information? It's not going to harm anyone if the information exists. But if the media wants to publish it, why do you have a problem with that?

You seem to have a severe emotional hangup about the Bell administration losing this court case.

posted by jr on Jul 17, 2013 at 07:48:02 pm     #  

Can an internet search cowboy decide that my house is in gangland?

Would that affect the decision or cost in purchasing a home? For some, I think it would. So there would be some consequences to the info.

How much weight to give the information is another question altogether. Depends on how panicky people are to realize there are more associations than the local unions, PTAs, and Mexican restaurant cabal in our midst.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 08:32:22 pm     #  

*The Blade can raise rates, charge to view their website, etc., but personally, I can get the same stories and headlines other places without paying a cent. *

i'm not looking to be combative... but what daily toledo paper is covering the same content as the blade?

posted by upso on Jul 17, 2013 at 08:49:02 pm     #  

oldhometown posted at 09:32:22 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

Can an internet search cowboy decide that my house is in gangland?

Would that affect the decision or cost in purchasing a home? For some, I think it would. So there would be some consequences to the info.

How much weight to give the information is another question altogether. Depends on how panicky people are to realize there are more associations than the local unions, PTAs, and Mexican restaurant cabal in our midst.

The list/map of registered sex offenders is publicly available. Do people use that info to see what's happening around schools, libraries, parks, their own homes, around relatives' homes, and the babysitters' homes?

posted by jr on Jul 17, 2013 at 10:02:37 pm     #  

The list/map of registered sex offenders is publicly available. Do people use that info to see what's happening around schools, libraries, parks, their own homes, around relatives' homes, and the babysitters' homes?

Again, it depends upon the person how much weight is assigned to the gang map, pedophile map, or any piece of information. Some will use the info, some won't.

And to answer the question directly--no, I don't think people use those resources, at least not to any great degree.

Frankly, I think many homebuyers are much more interested in whether a place has granite countertops or a hot tub in the master suite rather than finding out if John Wayne Gacy Jr. lives next door or if the Crips are essentially the neighborhood block watch.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 17, 2013 at 10:10:21 pm     #   1 person liked this

jr posted at 08:48:02 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

"Whatever. This thread was a promotional spam bastard anyway."

justread, why don't you install a Web browser that permits you to visit more than a couple websites.

And you never addressed this basic question:

"If, according to you, the info serves no community benefit, then why has city government chosen to hide the info for so long?"

"If it is so vitally important that this information is placed in my hands, why am I not allowed to ask what we, the average Joe is supposed to do with this information?"

Nobody claimed that you could not ask questions, so why are you writing fiction? And who in this thread claimed that the city's gang map info was "vitally important?" Again with the fiction.

I personally do not care what anyone else thinks about the information if it gets published. Why do you care what others will think?

The court has deemed the map to be public information. Boring, mundane, relevant, useless. Again, that depends upon the information consumer. It's just information.

How many times do you have to be told that you have the choice to ignore the information? It's not going to harm anyone if the information exists. But if the media wants to publish it, why do you have a problem with that?

You seem to have a severe emotional hangup about the Bell administration losing this court case.

I never said that it has no community benefit.
I asked what that benefit was. I figure that there must be one since it is so important. Yes. Important.

Who said it was vitally important? Uh, the Blade did.

I STILL don't care what others think, nor have I asked any questions regarding public opinion in this case. Talk about fiction. Re-read the questions.

The court has deemed the map to be public information and as I have posted above: "OK" Okay, as in okey dokey, fine ok dandy.

I don't know how many times people who can't differentiate between discourse and combat chose to inform me that I have a choice to ignore the information, but I think we are into the dozens. Let's presume for a moment THAT I WANT TO USE THE INFORMATION.
What does one use a gang map for?
What data exists that suggests that there are no negative ramifications to the release of this information?

I don't particularly care that the Bell administration lost this case, and I don't particularly want them to use my money to appeal.
I WAS A LITTLE CURIOUS WHAT THE CITIZENS WERE SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THE DAM THING AND WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES.

It's called conversation. Some conversationalists sometimes adopt positions for the sake of interesting debate that don't actually represent an agenda. I call it as I see it. No favorite player. Sometimes devil's advocate.

But for some reason, that question is way out of bounds. If your comment about visiting other websites is a subtle way of silencing my voice on this issue, I suppose it fits right in with all this desire for open public commentary.

And yeah, this thread started as nothing more than promotional spam by a paid spammer. So, whatever.

posted by justread on Jul 18, 2013 at 04:55:53 am     #  

upso posted at 09:49:02 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

*The Blade can raise rates, charge to view their website, etc., but personally, I can get the same stories and headlines other places without paying a cent. *

i'm not looking to be combative... but what daily toledo paper is covering the same content as the blade?

Not trying to be combative either. But if The Blade protects us from our elected representatives, who protects us from The Blade?

I know, I know.... unfair question. It should be invalidated. Certainly, only a person with an agenda would even consider it.

I know...Move along justread, nothing to see here.
Stop asking impertinent questions. Go away.

posted by justread on Jul 18, 2013 at 05:07:57 am     #   2 people liked this

justread, to answer your question: I WAS A LITTLE CURIOUS WHAT THE CITIZENS WERE SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THE DAM THING AND WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES.

i think there are a lot of uses for the data
use me as an example. i'm just a nerd. i like to look at traffic patterns on google maps. i enjoy thinking of toledo from a "sim city" point of view.

being able to lay gang data on to my city map, i can armchair analyze how different gangs affect the neighborhoods they are in.

for example, i maintain a private facebook group for Old West End neighbors. It's got about 500 members and we talk about everything from gardening to car break-ins. We don't have a gang problem but are surrounded by a lot of neighborhoods that do.

Knowing what gangs are around us (by name, not just color) we can add that data to our neighborhood maps and pay better attention to the things around us.

It's just data and I want more of it.

posted by upso on Jul 18, 2013 at 07:18:03 am     #   3 people liked this

How do you get recognized as a gang in Toledo?

upso, you're a business owner. If the police map is made public and your business is in the "Mad Hens"(made up name) gang territory, isn't that going to have a negative effect on business? If people start believing that this map has all the answers and is as important as the Blade is trying to make it out to be, when they do get to see it, some are gonna make changes to their routines.
Some might see that their favorite business is deep in the heart of a gang region. Now all of a sudden, they become paranoid and stop going there.I highly doubt when this "official" map comes out that people will be looking for gang areas and then running to get there to check them out.
I think the entire gang story, gang map, and the blade's consistent pursuit of police's map is counter-productive. I think it's going to have a much greater negative effect on people than just a data source.

posted by hockeyfan on Jul 18, 2013 at 09:10:41 am     #   1 person liked this

upso posted at 08:18:03 AM on Jul 18, 2013:

justread, to answer your question: I WAS A LITTLE CURIOUS WHAT THE CITIZENS WERE SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THE DAM THING AND WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES.

i think there are a lot of uses for the data
use me as an example. i'm just a nerd. i like to look at traffic patterns on google maps. i enjoy thinking of toledo from a "sim city" point of view.

being able to lay gang data on to my city map, i can armchair analyze how different gangs affect the neighborhoods they are in.

for example, i maintain a private facebook group for Old West End neighbors. It's got about 500 members and we talk about everything from gardening to car break-ins. We don't have a gang problem but are surrounded by a lot of neighborhoods that do.

Knowing what gangs are around us (by name, not just color) we can add that data to our neighborhood maps and pay better attention to the things around us.

It's just data and I want more of it.

That makes sense. You live in the thick of it.
You should have a player guide.

I live in a neighborhood that is actually claimed by soccer moms. lawn services, and SUVs; but oddly enough, at least on the Blade map, has been "documented" as claimed by a gang.

posted by justread on Jul 18, 2013 at 09:32:59 am     #  

"It's just data and I want more of it."

Same here. Most people will ignore the data just like the registered sex offender data, but some people may want to process the data in a different way.

Back in 2005, the Lucas County Sheriff provided county registered sex offender data in a PDF file, which was tough to use for anything else. An XML file would have been better.

But I saved the PDF data as a text file, parsed it, and stuffed the data into a database. Since the address for each offender was included with the sheriff's data, I used a program to get the latitude and longitude coordinates for each registered sex offender, and this info was also included in the database. And then I combined my database info with Google maps to make it much easier to view the data. All legal. Others around the country had created similar maps mashups.

August 2005 thread Mapping Lucas County's registered sex offenders

You could enter an address to show the location of nearby registered sex offenders. I had programmed the addresses for all the county library locations into the database and some of the TPS elementary schools. You could filter by classification, zip code, city, and last name.

But I unplugged the app a few years later because I received multiple lawsuit threats. I used government data. Even when I explained that the person was still in the latest file produced by the sheriff, I still received the threats.

So these kinds of data mashups are sometimes best produced by a large enough media org like the Blade who can handle legal challenges.

Approx 67 percent of Lucas County's population lives in Toledo, but around 90 percent of the county's registered sex offenders lived in Toledo.

The last time that I processed the data in 2008, over 700 county offenders were in the database. The top zip codes with the most registered sex offenders were:

43604 (43)
43605 (78)
43606 (52)
43608 (61)
43609 (88)
43611 (34)
43612 (52)
43613 (42)
43615 (42)

Some old screenshots from 2008:

Home Page

Offenders that lived in 43613

The Tier III (Sexual Predators) in the county

Obviously, it was possible to zoom in on the maps and click the push-pins for details.

Many websites now map or display this data, sometimes with photos, that's based upon a national registry.

The Toledo Blade's Data Center - "Databases, maps and helpful tools to use."

It's common for many media orgs to produce database-backed mashups of some kind, but a lot more could be done, especially locally by the orgs that have access to mountains of data. I would like to see a votes database app that shows how all current and past city council members voted on council issues.

Here's a simple example, created in 2007 that mapped city of Toledo properties that were for sale as of December 2006. The data came from a spreadsheet produced Karen Shanahan, who was a District 2 Toledo City Council candidate.
http://toledotalk.com/property

posted by jr on Jul 18, 2013 at 09:43:03 am     #  

justread posted at 06:07:57 AM on Jul 18, 2013:
upso posted at 09:49:02 PM on Jul 17, 2013:

*The Blade can raise rates, charge to view their website, etc., but personally, I can get the same stories and headlines other places without paying a cent. *

i'm not looking to be combative... but what daily toledo paper is covering the same content as the blade?

Not trying to be combative either. But if The Blade protects us from our elected representatives, who protects us from The Blade?

I know, I know.... unfair question. It should be invalidated. Certainly, only a person with an agenda would even consider it.

I know...Move along justread, nothing to see here.
Stop asking impertinent questions. Go away.

The Toledo Blade does not protect us from our elected officials, and in fact is unable to protect us, the Great Unwashed, from the winners of the last popularity contest. What The Blade is able to do and what it does do from time to time is expose the blatant corruption, chicanery and the ill-conceived Draconian legislation of our repressive government. Yes, The Blade could do a better job at this, but it generally does a fair job especially when compared to newspapers in other towns.

Insofar as We, the Great Unwashed, need to be protected from The Blade, we have alternate news sources and we have libel law. Let The Blade published a libelous story about anyone and a lawsuit can be filed. Given the depth of J.R. Block's pockets I'm betting a retraction would be printed and some kind of compensation awarded. Secretly and out of court, of course. Since J.R. Block knows this, he and his crew are a bit careful about just who they hammer into the ground.

OldHomeTown is quite right about the relationship between The Blade and government at all levels. The relationship should be adversarial at all times; if you can't say something bad about the government, then don't say anything at all. This latest lawsuit to reveal the gang map isn't about the map so much as it's about the right of the Great Unwashed to see just what we're paying for. It's one instance of many, and it serves to illustrate that the government, particularly the government's enforcement arm, is not allowed to keep secrets. Anytime the government is reluctant to reveal something that action, that reluctance, should send up six bright red flags. Refusal to allow access to public records should be criminalized, but it isn't - big fucking surprise there, right?

As to The Blade charging for access to read the paper, I don't blame them. How else are you going to pay reporters? Government subsidy?

posted by madjack on Jul 18, 2013 at 09:56:31 am     #  

Good stuff Jack, thanks for showing up with so much more than "public record, move along."

Well, if nothing else, we have been well protected against a second daily newspaper.

posted by justread on Jul 18, 2013 at 01:16:15 pm     #  

to answer HF's question from above: upso, you're a business owner. If the police map is made public and your business is in the "Mad Hens"(made up name) gang territory, isn't that going to have a negative effect on business?

doesn't worry me at all. if anything, it will bring a little more dialog between me and my customers. if crime is happening, we should be talking about it. no sense in ignoring what's going on around us. ignoring criminals doesn't make them go away.

the reality is, most gang crime is gang on gang crime. just because you live in a claimed area doesn't always mean your life will be affected.

that said, i'm about to re-sign my lease for another 3 years. if in fact the "mad hens" were moving into my block, i'd want to know about it before i committed to another lease!

posted by upso on Jul 18, 2013 at 03:13:05 pm     #  

The only thing the "mad hens" have to fear is a trademark lawsuit. Not a map.

posted by oldhometown on Jul 18, 2013 at 03:40:16 pm     #  

upso posted at 04:13:05 PM on Jul 18, 2013:

to answer HF's question from above: upso, you're a business owner. If the police map is made public and your business is in the "Mad Hens"(made up name) gang territory, isn't that going to have a negative effect on business?

doesn't worry me at all. if anything, it will bring a little more dialog between me and my customers. if crime is happening, we should be talking about it. no sense in ignoring what's going on around us. ignoring criminals doesn't make them go away.

the reality is, most gang crime is gang on gang crime. just because you live in a claimed area doesn't always mean your life will be affected.

that said, i'm about to re-sign my lease for another 3 years. if in fact the "mad hens" were moving into my block, i'd want to know about it before i committed to another lease!

I can see how a tenant would be less affected than a landlord.
Especially if you are into the hip urban scene, and have nice sneakers and a slight swagger. (Not saying that you have a slight swagger, but I'm counting on you for decent kicks.)

I've decided that I am thankful for the heads up.

I suddenly remember that I haven't earned a dime in Toledo for more than a decade. I just use it as home base out of a sentimentality. Followed the decent jobs out of town, but came back faithfully at the end of the night or the week.

Perhaps I have commuted too much, for too long. The gangs will keep expanding with the challenges for today's youth, the horrible options for jobs and careers, the fact that most Toledoans wouldn't know economic development if it ran smack into their Kia, and the coming of the next recession, which should be next summer if you look at the past cycles and triggers.

The capital loss is suddenly more attractive than the prospect of improvement and gain recovery. Especially since there is talk about killing the mortgage interest deduction. The Blade's gang map, and presumably the TPD map, is just a confirmation that it may be too late.

Hopefully everyone doesn't put a sign out on the same day. That would be awkward.

posted by justread on Jul 18, 2013 at 05:30:57 pm     #  

oldhometown posted at 04:40:16 PM on Jul 18, 2013:

The only thing the "mad hens" have to fear is a trademark lawsuit. Not a map.

The hens baseball team has been petty in the past.

June 2005 thread - Muddy bullies coffee company

The coffee company is called Mudhen Espresso Inc. The word 'mudhen' is the nickname for a bird called the American Coot. The coffee company founder said,

"The Toledo Mud Hens do not own the name to the bird, just like the St. Louis Cardinals don't own the cardinal and the Detroit Tigers don't own the tiger. Consumers are smarter than that."

The minor league team filed a trademark-infringement lawsuit Tuesday against Mudhen Espresso Inc., saying the company's name and logo could confuse both coffee consumers and baseball fans.

A local duo preparing to open the newest Mudhen Espresso location in Traverse City said a trademark dispute over the chain's name isn't as much as it's quacked up to be. "It's a non-issue," DC Cavender said of the legal challenge from the Toledo Mud Hens, an Ohio-based minor league baseball team. "We sell coffee - that's what we do."

posted by jr on Jul 18, 2013 at 06:01:46 pm     #   1 person liked this

The Blade's gang series among APME 2013 Journalism Excellence Awards winners "The Blade won a Gannett Foundation Award for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism"

Read more at http://www.toledoblade.com/Nation/2013/07/29/Asbury-Park-NJ-Press-Virgin-Islands-Daily-News-win-2013-APME-Journalism-Excellence-Awards.html#iFk5wUq9eGk8B8Wt.99

posted by paulhem on Jul 29, 2013 at 04:13:40 pm     #  

You guys better stock up on the ace bandages and slings for all the separated shoulders you'll be getting as a result of patting yourselves on the back.

a simple search revealed some interesting facts about the (non-profit) APME:

-3 of the 5 officers are in Ohio. Cleveland, Columbus, and Canton.
-One of the directors is Kurt Franck of the Toledo Blade

Here is part of their mission statement-"to foster journalism excellence and to support a national network for the training and development of editors who will run multimedia newsrooms in the 21st Century"

the awards will be given out at their annual conference, this year being held in Indianapolis. For a mere $350 per person, $250 for members, you can attend the festivities. Memberships cost $800 for lifetime, or $75 for one year.

A look at the Ethic Statements reveals that just from the recent Blade Joe McNamara stories, the Blade violated the ethics by being bias, partial to him, and doing something that appears to be a conflict of interest.

Either way, it seems like an "Old Boys Club" that spends more time kissing each others butts, than actually following their own mission statement and ethics.

I couldn't find accurate circulation numbers, but depending on how accurate these numbers are, The Virgin Island Daily News only prints 6 days a week, no Sunday. 17,000 circulation
vs
Toledo Blade, full 7 days a week and 119,000 daily with 141,000 on Sunday.
Yet, the Blade wants charges for online viewing while the Virgin Island Daily News online is free.

yeah, Congrats Blade. Next up, a riveting story revealing that illegal drugs are being used in Toledo. Can't wait.

posted by hockeyfan on Jul 29, 2013 at 08:18:58 pm     #   3 people liked this

hockeyfan: Fortunately for The Blade (and every other journalist), national award boards aren't populated by anonymous posters on a message board in Toledo.

Curious, isn't it? Those with the industry's respect and real training think The Blade is the number one newspaper for circulation of more than 75,000 regarding innovation in watchdog journalism.

hockeyfan: what are your credentials? At least I know who the Associated Press Managing Editors are - by name - with curriculum vitae that demonstrate their competence.

posted by paulhem on Jul 29, 2013 at 09:13:28 pm     #  

Can you see how I might think that the entire process could be interpreted as biased?

While I do not have any credntials relating to the APME, for a mere, $800, I could be a lifetime member.

One of the things I do find curious about the organization and it's awards, is how potentially biased the selection process might be. Has there been any award winners that are not paid members of the APME?

I might be more inclined to recognize the significance of the award if the playing field was level for all, but it's not. Sure, anyone can submit any story for consideration, BUT that will cost you $100. $75 if you're a member.

posted by hockeyfan on Jul 30, 2013 at 12:31:03 am     #   1 person liked this

paulhem posted at 10:13:28 PM on Jul 29, 2013:

hockeyfan: Fortunately for The Blade (and every other journalist), national award boards aren't populated by anonymous posters on a message board in Toledo.

Curious, isn't it? Those with the industry's respect and real training think The Blade is the number one newspaper for circulation of more than 75,000 regarding innovation in watchdog journalism.

hockeyfan: what are your credentials? At least I know who the Associated Press Managing Editors are - by name - with curriculum vitae that demonstrate their competence.

You should have let this one sit there Paul.

And... we are back to anonymity is a sign of a bad person, aren't we?

You were better when you were listening to your boss' advice for a few days and staying "light."

posted by justread on Jul 30, 2013 at 04:39:17 am     #   1 person liked this

justread: I didn't think that I was indicating that anonymity was "bad." Honestly, I don't think it is bad. However, it isn't the best. Is that fair?

posted by paulhem on Jul 30, 2013 at 05:42:38 am     #  

justread: My boss? No one has said anything to me about posting here for maybe a year or so. Regardless, it is one of the hazards of posting under one's name. I think we are getting along well here.

posted by paulhem on Jul 30, 2013 at 05:48:27 am     #  

You're missing the point Paul. I doubt anybody on this board cares about any award The Blade receives. By you coming on here and bragging about some award only goes to show that you just don't get it. It's like some guy we all know talking about how awesome he is or how big his car and house are. That attitude tends to have an off putting effect on most people, hence HF's response. Give my regards to that weird little man, JRB.

posted by hunkytownsausage on Jul 30, 2013 at 07:18:21 am     #  

paulhem posted at 06:42:38 AM on Jul 30, 2013:

justread: I didn't think that I was indicating that anonymity was "bad." Honestly, I don't think it is bad. However, it isn't the best. Is that fair?

hockeyfan: what are your credentials? At least I know who the Associated Press Managing Editors are - by name - with curriculum vitae that demonstrate their competence.

Whatever.

posted by justread on Jul 30, 2013 at 07:41:18 am     #  

hunkytownsausage: bragging? I looked over my post and failed to find bragging.

I humbly submit the updated story.

http://www.toledoblade.com/local/2013/07/30/Blade-s-gang-series-wins-national-honor.html

posted by paulhem on Jul 30, 2013 at 07:43:25 am     #  

Sigh....

posted by hunkytownsausage on Jul 30, 2013 at 07:52:12 am     #   2 people liked this

Toledo has Gangs??

posted by stooks on Jul 30, 2013 at 10:26:25 am     #  

I can appreciate people wanting to see what the point is when it comes for a members only organization. I too would like to know if any non-members have been awarded in the past.

It isn't all the uncommon for groups to be awarded "national awards" from organizations...that they are also required to be members of in order to be considered. I would think providing those details would at least ensure an unbiased report was being provided.

I don't think it is too much to ask to just get that information. It isn't like we are asking for a new sink hole to open up at Superior and Orange...or are we? :-P

posted by JustaSooner on Jul 30, 2013 at 12:12:23 pm     #  

LOL

http://toledo.craigslist.org/zip/3965088325.html

that made me chuckle.

posted by stooks on Jul 30, 2013 at 12:48:48 pm     #   2 people liked this

stooks: Let me tell ya about our coupons! ;)

posted by paulhem on Jul 30, 2013 at 01:09:02 pm     #  

The Toledo Police Department released the gang map to The Blade today.

http://www.toledoblade.com/Police-Fire/2013/08/12/The-Blade-obtains-Toledo-gang-map.html

posted by paulhem on Aug 12, 2013 at 02:04:41 pm     #  

paulhem posted at 03:04:41 PM on Aug 12, 2013:

The Toledo Police Department released the gang map to The Blade today.

http://www.toledoblade.com/Police-Fire/2013/08/12/The-Blade-obtains-Toledo-gang-map.html

That is not accurate.

posted by Nolan_Rosenkrans on Aug 12, 2013 at 02:25:59 pm     #  

While viewing the Blade's gang map image from earlier this year, I noticed something that I had not observed before.

Look at the way Toledo's streets are laid out, especially Detroit Ave, Nebraska Ave, and Cherry St, combined with the graphics from the Blade and with the image enlarged.

enlarge

posted by jr on Aug 12, 2013 at 03:04:21 pm     #   2 people liked this

18 gangs on city map vs 49 on blade's map.

Wow, that's a little bit of a difference.

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 12, 2013 at 03:06:44 pm     #  

Nolan_Rosenkrans: OK, Nolan... The story was published today. We have no indication what day the map was furnished to The Blade in the story. Geez!

posted by paulhem on Aug 12, 2013 at 03:22:11 pm     #  

paulhem posted at 04:22:11 PM on Aug 12, 2013:

Nolan_Rosenkrans: OK, Nolan... The story was published today. We have no indication what day the map was furnished to The Blade in the story. Geez!

But the headline is "Blade obtains city gang map". That's a little misleading especially now since you're back tracking and saying it isn't from a TPD representative and you have no indication what day the map was furnished to the blade.

You might as well have just posted a crayon map drawing from a gas station restroom with the same disclaimers.

In other words, it's a useless map from an unofficial source that has no date for accuracy, but the blade decided to "fool" people with the headline.

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 12, 2013 at 05:37:15 pm     #  

hockeyfan posted at 06:37:15 PM on Aug 12, 2013:
paulhem posted at 04:22:11 PM on Aug 12, 2013:

Nolan_Rosenkrans: OK, Nolan... The story was published today. We have no indication what day the map was furnished to The Blade in the story. Geez!

But the headline is "Blade obtains city gang map". That's a little misleading especially now since you're back tracking and saying it isn't from a TPD representative and you have no indication what day the map was furnished to the blade.

You might as well have just posted a crayon map drawing from a gas station restroom with the same disclaimers.

In other words, it's a useless map from an unofficial source that has no date for accuracy, but the blade decided to "fool" people with the headline.

Actually, what I was pointing out was that TPD didn't release it, it was obtained through a source.

posted by Nolan_Rosenkrans on Aug 12, 2013 at 06:29:28 pm     #  

So The Blade now has a copy of The Map that they obtained from an anonymous source? WTF?

The Blade sued, won the case and still can't get an official map from the TPD?

Why publish? What's the point?

posted by madjack on Aug 12, 2013 at 06:39:29 pm     #  

I am really good with crayons.

posted by paulhem on Aug 12, 2013 at 06:58:26 pm     #  

paulhem posted at 07:58:26 PM on Aug 12, 2013:

I am really good with crayons.

better than defending and justifying that rag you work for, I hope.

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 12, 2013 at 07:12:43 pm     #  

the biker group my uncle is in is listed as one of the watched gangs on the TPD map. i'm oddly unaffected by this!

posted by upso on Aug 12, 2013 at 09:11:01 pm     #   4 people liked this

It would be fun to overlay a map of where cops live. (Not by name, just by concentration and distribution.)

posted by justread on Aug 13, 2013 at 05:17:49 am     #  

justread posted at 06:17:49 AM on Aug 13, 2013:

It would be fun to overlay a map of where cops live. (Not by name, just by concentration and distribution.)

Those that do live in Toledo, you'll likely find them in the "fringe" areas of the city. If they haven't reached that magical length of service time to be granted a waiver to move out of the city, they locate as close to the burbs as possible while still legally being within the city limits.

posted by Foodie on Aug 13, 2013 at 07:43:42 am     #  

Can we get a map with all the local Mexican Restaurants?

posted by stooks on Aug 13, 2013 at 08:23:50 am     #   1 person liked this

Foodie posted at 08:43:42 AM on Aug 13, 2013:
justread posted at 06:17:49 AM on Aug 13, 2013:

It would be fun to overlay a map of where cops live. (Not by name, just by concentration and distribution.)

Those that do live in Toledo, you'll likely find them in the "fringe" areas of the city. If they haven't reached that magical length of service time to be granted a waiver to move out of the city, they locate as close to the burbs as possible while still legally being within the city limits.

Waivers are no longer needed because Ohio passed a law saying government can't force employees to live within certain areas. That being said, not all employees immediately moved so there is still probably a concentration of city employees In those areas that are in the city but inSylvania and springfield school districts (I.e., no were near gang territory).

posted by MsArcher on Aug 13, 2013 at 08:55:01 am     #  

The map shows ms-13, in the middle of the Joe E. Brown ballpark. Have they joined a city league, or something?

posted by Wulf on Aug 13, 2013 at 09:27:54 am     #   2 people liked this

City of Toledo seeks to drop appeal against The Blade over gang map

"The motion to dismiss came the day after The Blade obtained a copy of the map, which Mayor Mike Bell had refused for a month to make available for public inspection."

"The motion to dismiss verifies that the newspaper obtained an authentic copy of the department's map."

Read more at http://www.toledoblade.com/Courts/2013/08/13/City-of-Toledo-seeks-to-drop-appeal-against-The-Blade-over-gang-map.html#APK96IUCO3cHQEzs.99

posted by paulhem on Aug 13, 2013 at 05:28:09 pm     #  

You can fight City Hall, but nothing trumps a Strong Publisher.

posted by justread on Aug 13, 2013 at 08:42:37 pm     #  

the blade does a story about gangs in toledo and through investigative reporting, claim that there are 49 gangs. TPD has a gang task force and their map shows 18 gangs.
Does this mean the blade reporters were duped by just about any kid on a street corner who said they were gang members or that TPD has no idea of what is going on in Toledo, or both?

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 13, 2013 at 10:41:03 pm     #   1 person liked this

Here's what I don't get about the whole gang thing: why should I care?

If I live in one of the affected neighborhoods, why do I have to know which group my block is affiliated with, if I am a law-abiding citizen? Does it mean that I can only wear red if I am in a Bloods-affiliated gang territory and not blue? Do I have to know the appropriate gang sign before I can drive down my street?

What if I don't live in one of the neighborhoods affected? Again, why should I care?

The thugs who make up these gangs are nothing compared to the corporations who rob the taxpayers blind with special breaks, no-bid contracts and incentives to screw over the workers. Those are the folks who should be making headlines. THEY are the real gangsters.

posted by Anniecski on Aug 14, 2013 at 08:16:49 am     #  

good point, and I agree. the thing is... while it's absurd, depending on your age and demographic, wearing the wrong color can affect your life. at least a little bit.

for example, and I still can't believe this happened...
a few years ago I went to the marathon station at central & detroit at the northwest corner of the old west end.

as far as I was concerned, I didn't live in a gang riddled neighborhood and never really thought about the colors i wore. but on this one day, i was wearing some really bright blue sneakers, as well as some bright blue sunglasses and yes, a blue t-shirt. i don't normally color coordinate but i was feeling blue that day. top it off, i was driving a blue car at the time.

long story short, I got out of my car and was immediately approached by several young gentleman all wearing blue, asking what my problem was and did I know who I was fucking with?

i decided to hop in my car and get gas elsewhere. i was terrified but also laughing at myself for the unexpectedly strange situation I had found myself in.

posted by upso on Aug 14, 2013 at 08:48:31 am     #   1 person liked this

You should have told him that you were a member of the Smurfs.

posted by justread on Aug 14, 2013 at 09:02:55 am     #   3 people liked this

Why is the gang map important and why did The Blade expend its resources for an effort that returns a negative ROI?

I can't say it better than Keith Burris:

"The mayor is really saying that the less the public knows the better off they are. And that's a pretty outrageous thing to say. Vladimir Putin thinks that. No democratically elected chief executive in America is supposed to believe that."

"But Mayor Bell is a big believer in secrecy, implicitly and explicitly. He thinks government and public administration work better in darkness than in light."

"Where are the gangs? He can't tell us."

"What's going on with the Chinese and development of the Marina District? Privileged information."

So why did The Blade expend its resources? Because it had to do so to make sure that Putin's idea of transparent government does not become Toledo's. That is precisely why newspapers are the only private business protected by The Constitution.

Some people want to know about gangs, while others don't care. That is not the point. For all I know a distraught mother could have called the newsroom about her 16-year-old son's gang-related death. All i know is that people call The Blade and request The Blade to look into issues at least everyday. They send emails requesting a Blade investigation. I know from experience that they are all considered. What is one person's passion is another's lullaby.

Read more at http://www.toledoblade.com/Keith-Burris/2013/08/13/Does-secret-government-make-us-safer.html#KtUci0kF3eOfmUjl.99

posted by paulhem on Aug 14, 2013 at 09:10:55 am     #  

Toledo Blade: Does secret government make us safer? by Keith C. Burris

From the article: But Mayor Bell is a big believer in secrecy, implicitly and explicitly. He thinks government and public administration work better in darkness than in light. Emphasis mine.

Is Mr. Burris telepathic? Does he have some sort of special connection to Divinity? If not, how would he know just what Mayor Mike Bell is thinking?

I can just hear the howls now. C'mon, Mad Jack! You know what he meant by that. I can guess what he meant, but he's supposed to be a professional journalist, which implies that I shouldn't have to guess. The meaning should be clear.

Where are the gangs? He can't tell us.

I suspect what Mr. Burris means is that Mayor Bell won't tell us. Bell is perfectly able, but he refuses. There's a world of difference.

What's going on with the Chinese and development of the Marina District? Privileged information.

Which it may well be, but no mention of just why that information is being held in confidence and just who is on the list of select (privileged) people - because if Toledo city council members are on the list, shouldn't they be questioned as well?

How about the water plant, which he rightly tells us has to be built? He'll inform us when we need to know.

Again, does the city council know anything about this? Why aren't they being held accountable as well?

This is not Russia. The mayor is accountable to the public.

As are all of our elected officials. Tell me then, just what terrible calamity befalls a public official who refuses to be held accountable to the public? Is he charged with a crime, indited by a grand jury, tried, convicted and ridden out of town on a rail?

I'm begging the question here because I believe we all know the answer. Nothing. Not a damned thing happens.

posted by madjack on Aug 14, 2013 at 09:57:51 am     #   2 people liked this

I suspect what Mr. Burris means is that Mayor Bell won't tell us. Bell is perfectly able, but he refuses.

When somebody doesn't respond to an Inquisition from The Blade, rather than printing that the individual chose not to respond, or simply didn't respond, they print that the individual FAILED to respond. I have always chuckled at the characterization of a choice as a failure.

posted by justread on Aug 14, 2013 at 10:16:54 am     #   2 people liked this

"UTMC, Formerly the Medical College of Ohio" -TB

posted by stooks on Aug 14, 2013 at 10:26:02 am     #   1 person liked this

That's what makes me chuckle.

posted by stooks on Aug 14, 2013 at 10:26:17 am     #  

justread posted at 11:16:54 AM on Aug 14, 2013:

I suspect what Mr. Burris means is that Mayor Bell won't tell us. Bell is perfectly able, but he refuses.

When somebody doesn't respond to an Inquisition from The Blade, rather than printing that the individual chose not to respond, or simply didn't respond, they print that the individual FAILED to respond. I have always chuckled at the characterization of a choice as a failure.

Huh. I just searched failed and my name in our archives, and couldn't find a reference in that context at all. And there are LOTS of people who at one time or another haven't wanted to talk to me.

posted by Nolan_Rosenkrans on Aug 14, 2013 at 10:51:51 am     #  

Hey madjack How've you been? I haven't been to the range for awhile, maybe another meetup is in order?

madjack: I'm sure that you know all of the things that I am writing. Since this message board is read by others who may not understand some of this, I included stuff that may seem to appear somewhat preachy. Please forgive me.

Keith Burris' column is just that, a column. According to Wikipedia (not authoritative, but matches what I have learned)

What differentiates a column from other forms of journalism is that it meets each of the following criteria:

*It is a regular feature in a publication
*It is personality-driven by the author
*It explicitly contains an opinion or point of view

We will pass on your thoughts about the water plant.

You're right. The only thing that can happen to a public official who feels he/she is not accountable to the public happens at the ballot box. Hopefully this problem is discovered and reported by the media, so that people can weigh its importance when they vote. A criminal offense by an elected official is just that "criminal" and is handled accordingly.

Newspapers have traditionally have investigated some really bad things. Many times, the only reason people would have known about these things, is because newspaper owners have traditionally expended their resources to bring them to light. But mostly because of the First Amendment.
That's why it reads "Congress shall make no law..." It does not allow the Congress to make "good laws" about the press - "shall make no law..." Here is an interesting piece by a conservative Canadian columnist who opines about the news "fairness laws" now enacted in the U.K. George Jonas on press freedom: My five favourite words — ‘Congress shall make no law …’

posted by paulhem on Aug 14, 2013 at 11:45:09 am     #  

Nolan_Rosenkrans posted at 11:51:51 AM on Aug 14, 2013:
justread posted at 11:16:54 AM on Aug 14, 2013:

I suspect what Mr. Burris means is that Mayor Bell won't tell us. Bell is perfectly able, but he refuses.

When somebody doesn't respond to an Inquisition from The Blade, rather than printing that the individual chose not to respond, or simply didn't respond, they print that the individual FAILED to respond. I have always chuckled at the characterization of a choice as a failure.

Huh. I just searched failed and my name in our archives, and couldn't find a reference in that context at all. And there are LOTS of people who at one time or another haven't wanted to talk to me.

Perhaps the footnotes at the bottom of articles don't show up in your search?

Ask Ignazio if you need verification of my outrageous claim.

It has been going on for many years, and I have talked about it with many people. I'm not the only one who's noticed, and I didn't make it up.

I'll direct your attention to the next example that I see.

posted by justread on Aug 14, 2013 at 12:18:39 pm     #  

madjack: I meant that we will pass along, your water plant concerns regarding transparency.

posted by paulhem on Aug 14, 2013 at 12:46:29 pm     #  

justread posted at 11:16:54 AM on Aug 14, 2013:

I suspect what Mr. Burris means is that Mayor Bell won't tell us. Bell is perfectly able, but he refuses.

When somebody doesn't respond to an Inquisition from The Blade, rather than printing that the individual chose not to respond, or simply didn't respond, they print that the individual FAILED to respond. I have always chuckled at the characterization of a choice as a failure.

I am sure that there must be an example of "FAILED to respond." However, I failed to find it in the context that your claim is made. Maybe someone else?

https://www.google.com/webhp#bav=on.2,or.r_cp.r_qf.&fp=2bef2a73602f93c3&q=toledoblade+%22respond+to%22+-police+-firefighters

posted by paulhem on Aug 14, 2013 at 12:58:12 pm     #  

I don't need to hijack the thread further with that observation and the subsequent defense. I was unable to find one using a search engine, and I must move on. I do see that there is no monopoly on the device.
I remember talking with my father about the dashing pacific deal after an article that used the device, but can't find the article. If that requires me to yield the point, so be it. Innocent until proven guilty and all that.

posted by justread on Aug 14, 2013 at 03:46:58 pm     #  

and yet, we still don't know what is more accurate. The 18 gangs the city and TPD mapped out, or the 49 gangs the blade mapped out? The blade won an award for their article about gangs that the city and TPD know nothing about? What criteria did the blade use to identify a "gang" in toledo anyway? I'm starting to believe that the blade reporters might have been "duped" by mere kids on the street looking for a cheap thrill."Oh yea, we're a bad ass gang. We're the McDonald Clowns and this is our territory." Heck, why stop at 49? If there's an award to be won, redo the map and article to claim 102 gangs are in toledo and maybe CNN will come do a story on the most gang populated city in the U.S.

As a tax payer, I kinda wish the blade would have put the same effort into finding out what happened to all the missing city equipment and all the waste, fraud, and abuse by the city workers and departments of tax payer money.

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 14, 2013 at 04:03:17 pm     #  

"Shows it's readers what Mayor Mike Bell withheld and didn't want you to know"

ah, that there's only 18 gangs in Toledo instead of the reported 49? Is that what Bell didn't want us to know?

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 14, 2013 at 04:06:03 pm     #  

two different data streams gave two different results and I believe the blade map is clearly more accurate. the people giving the information weren't in fear of being incarcerated for talking about it. also, i know taylor the reporter and she's smart. way way smarter than you're giving her credit for HF.

posted by upso on Aug 14, 2013 at 04:08:41 pm     #  

so a white female reporter is able to gather more accurate information about street gangs than TPD and their gang task force?

18 vs 49? I hope that TPD hires her as a consultant, or at least has her lecture the department on fact gathering because clearly TPD has missed the boat.

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 14, 2013 at 04:17:11 pm     #  

hockeyfan:

excerpt from The Blade's story:

I bolded one area of the content.

The Blade's map, which published on April 28 as part of a four-day series about gangs in Toledo and was produced with the help of former and active gang members and police sources, shows 49 gangs.

“Yours is more detailed,” said Alton Williams, 31, a former member of the Lawrence Blood Villains who was featured in the first day of the “Battle Lines: Gangs of Toledo” series. “You have some of the newer gangs on there. Yours is probably more hands-on because you had actual people show you where the gangs are.”

Roshawn Jones, 24, who works with young people in gangs and runs Soul City Boxing, a central-city boxing gym, agreed.

“It seems like yours is more detailed where their map is more approximate,” Mr. Jones said as he reviewed both maps Monday afternoon.

In an April interview with The Blade, Lt. Ed Bombrys, who oversees the department's Gang Unit, said there are anywhere from 25 to 40 “big, major gangs” and an estimated 2,000 gang members in the city.

Read more at http://www.toledoblade.com/Courts/2013/08/13/Blade-obtains-Toledo-s-map-of-gang-territories.html#kGXV6jiAbq6dJvuo.99

posted by paulhem on Aug 14, 2013 at 04:32:42 pm     #  

I think the map falls a bit short of the actual East Toledo gang activity.

posted by 6th_Floor on Aug 14, 2013 at 04:38:32 pm     #  

the entire subject has become one big joke.

City's official map only shows 18 gangs, but a police Lt. says that there are 25 to 40 big, major gangs in Toledo.

Blade claims their map is most accurate and the city won't release their map because the mayor doesn't want anyone to see their map. The same map that only shows 18 gangs.

The blade says their map, which shows 49 gangs, is based on many hours of hard work and is most accurate, but they still fight to get the city to release the map. The same map that only shows 18 gangs.

The city fights not to release their map, then agrees to release it after someone "leaked" their map.

Neither the city nor the blade ever revealed what constitutes a "gang" in Toledo.

At this point, as a citizen, I have no idea what to believe. Is TPD filled with incompetent idiots when it comes to gang "intel", or did the blade make up all their information to "scare" people and get an award.

The entire plot line has the smell of a good "The Office" episode.

posted by hockeyfan on Aug 14, 2013 at 05:13:59 pm     #  

Ultimately this gang series has been a success for TB.

The lawsuit put Mike Bell in his place regarding who really controls this city and it brought many eyeballs to the newspaper and website.

posted by 6th_Floor on Aug 14, 2013 at 05:18:33 pm     #  

"so a white female reporter is able to gather more accurate information about street gangs than TPD and their gang task force?"

Apparently. Why is it hard to believe that a crime reporter could gather more information than a government entity?

Taylor's blog:
http://toledoblade.typepad.com/ridealong

I'm Taylor Dungjen, crime reporter for The Blade. I've been covering crime in the Glass City since March, 2011. Lots has happened around here since then and, I'm sure, there's more to come. But what you see in print or on our Web site, toledoblade.com, is only a fraction of what goes on and there's always more to the story. I'm inviting you on a ride along as I cover crime in and around Toledo. Check back often for strange news, shenanigans, behind-the-scenes information you won't get anywhere else, and ramblings on my life as a crime reporter for 'one of America's great newspapers.'

Photo caption from Aug 13, 2013 Blade story

Alton Williams, a former member of LBV, or Lawrence Blood Villains, says the newspaper's map shows newer gangs and is 'probably more hands-on' because The Blade had gang members show more precisely where the gangs were located.

I could be wrong, but the Blade's Toledo gang series that was published earlier this year may have resulted from old fashioned, feet on the street, investigative Journalism. Big 'J' versus most of the sludge that gets produced today that barely qualifies as little 'j' journalism.

Of course, Taylor was not the only person involved.

The sheer amount of work — writing, filming, and legwork — done by Taylor Dungjen and Amy E. Voigt, as well as by the Blade’s newsroom editors and art staff knocks me out. What a commitment — to serious journalism and to the community. At a time when most newspapers are pulling back from the big investigative story and divesting in community journalism, this newspaper told a vitally important story, and told the truth, without fear or favor.

It's a lot better use of Blade resources, compared to the Blade's asinine, multi-year effort to save the Seneca County courthouse from demoltion. I lost track, but I think the Blade published over 200 stories, opinions, and whatever about that damn, irrelevant thing.

posted by jr on Aug 14, 2013 at 06:13:18 pm     #  

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