Was KNBC photographer Kenny Holmes being insensitive—or simply smart—when he used Twitter to reach out to a person who claimed to be one of the riders stuck on a disabled California roller coaster Monday?
Four people were injured when a tree branch fell onto the track of the Ninja, a 2,700 foot ride at Six Flags Magic Mountain. Shortly after the accident, Holmes used Twitter to find a user named Israel who may have been one of the 22 riders who had to be rescued from the coaster by firefighters. “Stuck upside down on Ninja at Six Flags…scary. The news is here as well” he tweeted.
Holmes reached out with his own tweet:
@diskiddooo_ hey man glad you’re ok. I’m with NBC LA. Do you have pics?
— Kenny Holmes (@KHOLMESlive) July 8, 2014
That tweet was quickly pounced on as an example of uncaring media interested only in getting those exclusive photos, with one person sending a mocking tweet, “Stay classy @NBCLA @KHOLMESlive. “You haven’t been rescued yet, might fall, but u have pics bro?”
Holmes, who also reached out to relatives of potential victims of the coaster accident on Twitter, defended himself, saying he confirmed “Israel” was no longer on the ride, and not in danger of falling—actually, he’d never even been on the ride, but had sent out the “stuck upside down” tweet as a joke. Read more