Dear Lord, I will never understand how people can get so hell bent about getting a lot of snow in the winter, especially somewhere like Northeaster United States. You should be prepared for and un suprised by huge snowstorms if you live in these types of areas. Its not like this was happening in New Mexico.
Yes, snow storms are hyped. The government and public works departments want people off the roads for clean up, the faster the better, with as little overtime cost as possible. Another factor, it gets people to stock up on various foods and goods, putting money into the economy. The more fear they induce, the more money is spent. The news today is full of hype and marginal truths depending on who owns and sponsors them. In winter it snow and has done so since the beginning of time.
Living close to a major city, all I heard on the news earlier in the week was about a "major snowstorm" and that we were going to get over a foot of snow. All of the news outlets sent reporters scrambling from the local supermarket and hardware stores to out on the roads and at the local Department of Transportation. And what did we get? Not even a coating. I can understand when an area is going to get over 6 inches of snow, or even a foot. At least then you have a reason to hype up the storm and keep people informed, but even when the forecasts change and we get barely a coating on the ground they send their reporters out to cover it anyway. The local news outlets need to get their priorities straight and learn how to report the right way.
In a 24 hour news cycle, any event significantly outside the norm (e.g. blizzard) is going to get national buzz, just like the obsessive hurricane watches that occur every year as the media waits for a real story to develop. The goal here is really to make a big deal and then say if something happens what it was or if nothing happens to move onto the next issue.
My god people today are very fragile. The storms we get today are not different than the storms we used to get in the 70's and 80's and 90's. We were less advanced from a technology standpoint and handled snow storms like it was no big deal. Today everything is sensationalized to create fear and false need. A large portion of my family is in the snow removal business, they have less equipment and employees now than they did in the 80's yet more accounts and shorter work periods. Fear mongering at its best.
Yes, I agree that the media overreacts to snow storms. With memorable taglines such as "Snowpocalypse" the media tends to incite panic in the follow up to and throughout coverage of a snow storm. This causes the public to go on grocery spending sprees and encourages a culture of fear. The media's job is to report the news, not to create a public panic about the weather when no such panic is necessary.
Snowstorms cause disruption in everyda routine. It can cause complete city shutdowns causing economic disadvantages and general inconveniences. It can also be deadly in certain cases. On the whole, it causes disruption and a modern society is annoyed by disruption to daily routine. Hence, media just represents what the average American feels.