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This weekend BrickUnderground found itself at the epicenter of a viral bed bug epidemic that began when the entertaining Brooklyn rant blog F*cked in Park Slope wrote about our Feb. 4th report on the Second Annual National Bed Bug Summit.
FIPS' doomsday-themed post, published on Friday, apparently piqued the interest of Gothamist.com, which ran "Bedbug Summit Ends, Experts Abandon Hope" on Saturday morning: "It seems the best and brightest minds on the front lines of the bedbug war have all but abandoned hope for a future when every child can go to sleep at night and awaken with the exact same amount of blood in their veins," Gothamist wrote, linking back to BrickUnderground's report.
With sincere appreciation to Gawker--whose vast reach pulled hundreds from around the country to BrickUnderground, where they (hopefully) got wiser about the collective action needed to combat the nation's alarming and enduring bed bug problem--we would like to point out that the photo accompanying Gawker's bed bug post (above) does not actually feature bed bugs.
"I'm guessing these are rubber pseudo beetles made in Taiwan with a bit of Elmer's glue to keep them in line," hazards bed bug expert and entomologist Gil Bloom, the author of the bed bug summit report that started the, um, feeding frenzy. (Bloom himself, who received a phone call from a major morning news show as a result, tells us he is puzzled by the doomsday spin on his summit account: "I thought the conference was a positive event which took a realistic approach toward meeting the challenge of bed bugs.")
If it's any comfort to Gawker, the site is in good company. The national blog Bedbugger.com has previously taken to task CBS and ABC among other major media (in addition to Gawker itself) for the same photographic offense: "If the news media doesn’t post accurate pictures of bed bugs," says Bedbugger correctly points out, "you’d forgive the public for being confused about what they look like."