Thursday, July 27, 2006

SOMETHING FISHY AT THE ZOO. It's true. As Gawker reports, a Central Park web page for the Central Park Zoo [link removed; see clarification below--ed.] currently includes this tasteless paragraph (note the last sentence):
The new zoo is divided into several different sections which provide the animals with homes as close to their natural habitat as possible. These include tropic, temperate and polar zones that house everything from tiny leafcutter ants to the hugely popular polar bears. The zoo is also actively involved the preservation of endangered species, providing a home for rare tamarin monkeys, Wyoming toads, thick-billed parrots, and red pandas. Rumors of a secret exhibit featuring English-speaking cab drivers have never been confirmed.
The offending page also declares "All text in the Zoo section was taken fromCentral Park Zoo Wildlife Guide Bookunless otherwise stated." [sic]

CLARIFICATION Okay. Via Gawker, I see that the offending website,, is not associated with any public institution, such as the Central Park Zoo, Central Park Conservancy, New York City Parks Department, and Wildlife Conservation Society. I'm sure that people looking for information about Central Park needn't bother with lists its staff as Aric Boyles, Cristian Nicolescu, John B. Moore (the Content Director), and Rick Anderson--is a vehicle for advertising, with New York Sports Club identified as one of its current sponsors. Those who fish around at can find at least one disclaimer, which is not on its home page. The disclaimer says
Disclaimer: We are in no way officially linked to, nor represent, the New York City Parks Department or the Central Park Conservancy. Nor do we represent the Central Park Zoo or the Wildlife Conservation Society that operates it. We do, however, share their mission to assist park visitors in taking advantage of Central Park's many features. This site's operation is financed by advertising that, we hope, will intrude minimally with the site aesthetics. It will also enable us to provide relevant content that can be targeted towards people's specific interests.


Emdashes said...

But how crazy that the city wouldn't have bought that domain name! To paraphrase Singin' in the Rain what are they, dumb or something?

David Marc Fischer said...

I know, I know. I'm still reeling from the whole experience. Maybe I'm overreacting or something....