It’s been a busy couple of weeks at the park. The story in The Sun on 10th January was carried onto other newspapers and websites and soon became one of the most talked about stories of the day. The BBC and Granada news teams came out to talk to the park and Knowsley Safari Park made national news for all the wrong reasons. We even “trended” on Twitter, some of tweets though were caused simply by the fact we were trending “look Knowsley Safari is trending, I live near there” and “Knowsley Safari is trending maybe Jar Jar Binks has been seen there” the last one referring to another trend topic.
The park has issued statements about the allegations and they are on previous blog posts here so I don’t need to go into those again.
It has been interesting to see the reactions through social media and the impact this has on other media. The Facebook page quickly became the target for the angry shouts and first reactions to the story, the pictures weren’t nice and it is understandable that people react to these. The initial story did lead the reader to believe these animals had been slaughtered as part of a culling culture, this is what the headline said the story was about they didn’t go as far as to caption images as culled animals though and in fact none of the animals were culled. It seems that it also gave the impression that all these pictures were taken at the same time, actually they were taken over a period of time from April (just after Penny Boyd’s partner lost his job) to August. These social media reactions were then mirrored by more traditional press as their readers, listeners, viewers, tweeted and posted to their own Facebook pages making this a must do story for the day. If only people were as quick to post, tweet and retweet good news.
One PR company tweeted recently that “a lie travels around the world while the truth is still putting it’s socks on”. Next time we go to bed with our boots on!