Monday, October 3, 2011

Charlottesville, VA's "The Daily Progress" Takes Opinion of Media Outlet For Builders, Presents It As If It Is "News"

An online media outlet for builders thinks that 2012 will be better than 2011 for the Charlottesville Area new construction market, despite declining sales, and has deemed this market "healthy."

Which is more disturbing, misleading, embarrassing, depressing?

1. That the US housing market is so troubled that the Charlottesville Area, which has seen a 16% year-over-year decline in new home sales is termed "healthy" by a media outlet devoted to builders?


2.  That The Daily Progress, the only regional, daily local newspaper, prints the opinion of the media outlet in big bold letters, above-the-fold headline on the front page of the Sunday edition, as if it is news?

Additionally, The Daily Progress headline indicates that Builder Online is referring to the entire Charlottesville Area real estate market, rather than just the new construction element.

Sales of newly constructed homes are small as percentage of total sales, and have declined:
  • In 2010, new homes made up 15.3% of market
  • In 2011, new homes made up 9.7% of market
  • That's a decline of -5.6%
And further, in the online edition of the puff piece, the newspaper calls the trade association's projection for 2012 a "Report":

So...Really?  Would the  Above-the-Fold headline have been more pertinent for a lovely Sunday in October if it was one from Page A5: "State says pumpkin crop looks good"--?

Images copyright The Daily Progress / Media General News Service

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