Non flying "experts"

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by ctporter, Jul 23, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. ctporter
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    ctporter Silver Member

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    Arghh! I really hate it when those that do not fly purport to be the definitive expert at things such as TSA screening procedures, boarding procedures, carry-on requirements, etc. While I am no where near a million miler, I have managed 75k for the last two years, but, sigh, evidently I am not expert enough for some. (rolling my eyes) thankfully, I don't have to interact often with them, but just enough that the cumulative effect only gets to me a few times! Even better, I do not have to travel with them!
     
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  2. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    My pet peeve would be the so-called travel experts on TV, you know, the ones who get nearly everything wrong. I won't name names. Other than Peter Greenberg. ;)
     
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  3. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I've yelled at many a talking head on TV when they say something stupid, or when they suggest people do stupid things... or even better, when they position themselves as an insider based on knowledge that's publicly available.
     
  4. Mapsmith
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    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    You mean you don't like it when Greenberg says no one should check bags? Then everyone brings two to four carryons? Then they put them all in First? ;)
     
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  5. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    Not worth getting upset about. It's exactly the same in other areas that I consider myself intimately familiar with (eg mobile devices, software development). Makes me wonder about the true expertise of those who comment on areas that I am not an expert in.. Say health/medicine. Are they just a bunch of quacks?
     
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  6. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    Some people like to be, or at least appear to be, the biggest brain in the room...one of my nieces does aspire to know everything about travel when she grows up. She tends to try and know everything about anything....we may see her schooling us one day. ;)
     
  7. mommypoints

    mommypoints Gold Member

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    People on TV get things wrong??!! Say in ain't so! ;)
     
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  8. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Unfortunately, I've seen evidence of this phenomenon on MP: For example, a post about (a carrier's long haul business class hard product) containing a line that the poster had never flown long haul business class. I'm also disturbed by some usernames that indicate more knowledge than the person has. Part of the problem is taken care of by the official representative designations of MP, but it could confuse newbies.
     
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  9. HaveMilesWillTravel
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    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    How good an economist are you really? :D

    (I really do have (lots of) miles and I do travel, so no false statements in my username)

    Jokes aside, I think most people on MP I have interacted with are pretty honest and willing to admit that they don't know everything.
     
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  10. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Note his handle is not "goodMSPeconomist" or "expertMSPeconomist"... Nor is it "mediocreMSPeconomist" or "starvingMSPeconomist" like many good things, perhaps it leaves just a little to the imagination ;)
     
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  11. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    I often remind myself of this important rule. I find it difficult to do this, however, when people speak erroneously about something that is important to me in a forum that is influential. My business requires keeping a low profile in general ... Which precludes much public speaking ... But sometimes exceptions are necessary!

    Whenever the New York Times or Wall Street Journal write about my current field, or my prior area of focus (which was a bit of a controversial one as the world melted down), i find these two papers often report facts correctly, but misinterpret them. Or, in some cases in the Times (and Gretchen Morgenstern's in particular), grossly distorts to achieve an editorial goal without presenting the complete picture or complete circumstances surrounding a matter that they're covering.

    Taking away the articles in the news section which are really editorials, I often remind myself that the folks putting these papers together are journalists. They don't do what I do - and often have little (or no) training in the areas that they're covering. Certainly, no one interested in writing aspires to write about private investment in infrastructure. Noble as our efforts may be, writing about what I do is not an aspirational goal of anyone who writes about it. They're happy to have a salary-paying job at a newspaper or magazine...and really trying to do their best...with the hopes of moving up and not having to write about what I do! It's no different than if I had to dissect and accurately judge two learned readers debating some classic piece of literature. Like many reporters covering my field, I A) probably never heard of it, and B) wouldn't know all the subleties of the underlying subject and C) probably would have little ability to effectively report on the debate.
     
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  12. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    I tend to agree about the handle thing and will downrate information
    from BBS users whose screen names have implications of great value
    ("guru" and the like) ... I see nothing wrong with "economist" or
    "banker" - but do tend to look askance at people who call themselves
    "doctor," which may or may not be paradoxical. And I really turn my
    nose up at people who call themselves "Elliott."
     
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  13. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    To conclude on talking heads, the way you get on CNN, fox news or cnbc (or the like) has more to do with your agent than anything else.

    When new topics come up in the news that they drone on about for hours, the producers have a cadre of agents that they call to find content experts. Those agents -paid for by the individual- often end up influencing who appears on tv and says what.

    Many of these speaking appearances on tv are unpaid (or receive a trivial fee), but are useful to the speaker to further his/her one career or platform. Resumes which read, "frequent contributor to cnbc" indicates, with limited exception, someone who seeks publicity often just for publicity's sake.
     
  14. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Handles often change in stature over time, A shy decade ago when I chose my handle, being a banker was, at least to some, a good thing. New York, at least immediately post 9-11, also brought about favorable thoughts. Now, due to recent developments in the markets, I'm not sure which would be worse...my handle, or something like "puppykiller."

    What, may I ask, is a "Violist?"
     
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  15. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    I cannot always claim travel expertise, although friends, family, and coworkers often ask questions because of my frequent use of planes.... using "woman" = at least I know I am one. :D
     
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  16. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Are you qualified to use the letter "R" in your handle?
     
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  17. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I've noticed on major TV outlets, including CNN, cases where the experts were identified by a job title that wasn't correct. In every case I remember, the persons title that was stated when they were introduced was bigger and more important than their true title. I don't understand why the media didn't do this sort of a basic fact check before having the expert on the air. These were cases where a simple click to the employer's website or a phone call to HQ could have been done but either weren't or the verification was done and someone writing the script for the presenter was incredibly sloppy. In one case I remember, it seemed like outright fraud to me.
     
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  18. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    A violist is someone who plays the viola.
     
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  19. ctporter
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    ctporter Silver Member

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    That happens often to me in my field, sometimes I will gently correct misstatements, other times I have to correct the error in a way that doesn't seem like I am actually pointing out their errors, and then there are times where I just have to bite my tongue and let it go. But, then something like this must happen to each of us within our realms of knowledge and experience. I goes with the territory I suppose. I have to admit though, when someone is being very adamant about an electrical requirement (and they are wrong) it is fun to ask if they have a copy of the code and ask them to look up the panel members. The best is for my local city code, I ask them if they know the chair of the committee, and let them know it is some woman with my name - fancy that! LOL

    Oh, btw, my I am ok with my handle although within my family there are nine of us with the same first and last names which is why I use the middle initial :)
     
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  20. rwoman
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    rwoman Gold Member

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    By my given name, yes, I think I can....lol...:D
     
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  21. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    Only in months when she eats oysters.
     
  22. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    Story. Friend of mine (a violist) was touring with an Israeli orchestra whose name shall remain unsaid. Anyhow, they were in South America someplace, and the local dignitaries gave a reception, with the usual chit-chat, what instrument do you play, blah blah. Soy oboista ... soy violinista ... soy flautista ... and so on. So my friend says "soy violista," and this horrible silence fills the room. Though in Spanish Spanish that would be the appropriate answer, in the particular local version, it means "I am a rapist."
     
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  23. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    That's funny. I don't know what country that is, but if someone from there were on this board, I presume they'd think you were a rapist, too? If so...finally, someone with a handle more offensive than "NYBanker!!!"
     
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  24. Pharaoh
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    Pharaoh Gold Member

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    Note to self: Monday, look into defusing inflammatory username; check with HR.
     
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  25. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    I fly a lot and although I'm happy to voice an opinion, I'll also admit I'm not an expert. I figure people with questions would rather get a answer with a caveat than no answer at all. The people who claim to be experts and flaunt their stuff without any modesty usually aren't worth listening to, whether they actually know the material or not. In my field, even friends will shoot you down if you confuse your facts, so it's best to be cautious.
     

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