SYRACUSE Before the news cycle expanded to 24 hours, government agencies especially knew there was a clever, not-altogether honest way of announcing something controversial without really announcing it: Break the news on a Friday afternoon.
It all but guarantees the story will be old and forgotten about by Monday morning.
As it turned out, it was getting late on Friday afternoon when we first saw the rumors on Twitter, then Facebook, that managerial and administrative changes at Green Hills Market were resulting in local, small-scale food producers getting the boot at the Valley grocery store.
Green Hills, for decades a beloved independent store, has emerged as a key player in launching the local movement here in Syracuse.
Marty Butts, who runs Small Potatoes Marketing and Sales, said the store has become a model of how to support local businesses.
We followed the rumors and reached out to the store and several people who had made comments on social media. But, we got no replies to several of those inquiries, and the responses we did get were rather vague.
(It’s amazing what people will say in a very public platform, like Facebook, but won’t repeat to a journalist.)
As the weekend, and our 8:30 a.m. Monday press time, loomed closer, we had a decision to make: do we report what we have, which is based mostly on rumors, or wait and see what happens?
Waiting would mean the next issue of The Eagle we’d be able to run a story would be Aug. 25, a full two weeks after the first hint of troubles at Green Hills hit our Twitter feed. But waiting would also give us more time to flesh out the story and separate fact from fiction.