As a resident of Hoboken, I'm happy to see that the Hoboken Reporter has been actively covering news regarding the North pier. It has been very helpful in understanding both sides of the story.
I have noticed, however, that citizens who are concerned about development on piers are always referred to as "anti-development activists". This term implies that these people are outside agitators who are unreasonably and fanatically against something -- namely development. The truth is that the people referred to in the articles are concerned Hoboken residents, your neighbors and mine, who have a shared interest in preserving and improving the quality of life in our town.
In contrast, the developers get this great word to describe them. "Developers" implies people who support positive growth and advancement. I hope that all developers live up to the truly positive aspects of this definition. We can't ignore, though, that they are indeed a special interest group. They are, of course, businessmen who are also motivated by profit. However, the press never refers to them one-sidedly as "the rich and powerful developers" or "anti-public space activists."
I learned from my Dad, who is a long-time reporter, that in media language is everything. And this juxtaposition of a negative phrase, "anti-development activists," with a positive word, "developers" spins the story unfairly and does a disservice to the thousands of residents of this community who have dedicated time and energy, learning about the proposal, attending meetings, and expressing their views. Public participation in town should be welcomed and supported. The press needs to develop language that encourages, rather than discourages this participation.
In fairness to all concerned, refer to the developers as "developers"," but refer to 'us', if you need a soundbite as "concerned citizens" because that's what we are. Thanks.