The Philadelphia Daily News story titled, “Phila.-area hotels to bed bugs: there’s no room for you,” is a bonafide snooze fest. Journalist Emily Schultheis writes about an upcoming bed bug seminar in Philadelphia hosted by the Philadelphia Hotel Association. Unfortunately, she only provides readers with a general overview of what bed bugs are and stops short of actually giving readers useful information. The article doesn’t tell you how to detect bed bugs, what to do if you have them or if any hotels in the area have a bed bug infestations.
Schultheis begins the article with one of the biggest bed bug clichés around: “Sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite.” Are you serious? The article then goes on to explain that bed bugs are nocturnal insects that can bite humans. (Um, we already knew that). She next continues on by telling readers that bed bugs are found in beds, as well as other places. (Okay, still waiting for something we don’t know). Finally, Schultheis attempts to legitimize the article by including quotes from so-called bed bug expert Jeff White, and entomologist Chang Wang. The article states: “White and Wang recommend that travelers and hotel workers educate themselves about how to spot a bedbug infestation and the best ways to eliminate them,” then stops. She does not educate the reader on these points or provide information on where to get educated regarding bed bugs.
Overall, I think Schultheis could have done so much more with this article. Although the fact that there is a “bed bug convention” in Philadelphia could be newsworthy, it just is not interesting without more information. Schultheis could have told readers how to spot bed bugs in hotels, what do if they find them, or given us insight regarding which Philly-based hotels to look out for, etc. Because Schultheis story leaves huge holes…I howl.
– Cherri Gregg