‘It crushed us’ / Search your mailbox / Painful anniversary

‘It crushed us.’ Updating coverage: A Florida sheriff assesses the widespread devastation Hurricane Ian has inflicted on the state.
The Lever: Three months before this “climate-intensified hurricane,” eight Florida Republican congress members “voted against investments in climate resilience, weatherization and flood mitigation.”
Journalist Dan Rather: “Ian is … a harbinger of a more chaotic future, and we would be wise to learn from its lessons.”
Here’s counsel for doing the most good with hurricane relief donations.

‘Those boys dodged bullets … looking at my blood-soaked body, and they assumed their mother was probably bleeding to death.’ The Sun-Times shares statements from plaintiffs in the first lawsuits filed in connection with the Highland Park Fourth of July parade massacre.

‘It’s … unheard of for an important news site to operate under such a cloak of anonymity.’ Columnist Eric Zorn takes a critical look at the Chicago crime-focused website CWBChicago.
CWB’s managing partner, Tim Hecke, wrote Chicago Public Square in August: “That’s the way the site operated when I took charge, and I see no compelling reason to change it. … Bylines are something reporters care much more about than readers.”
Poynter surveys the growing ranks of newspapers—many owned by Chicago-based Tribune Publishing— that no longer have an office for reporters and editors.

‘Wrong never felt so right.’ That was the marketing slogan for a romance novel whose cover featured an image of Michigan bodybuilder-turned-construction worker Logan Barnhart, who yesterday pleaded guilty to (missing link added) dragging a police officer down the Capitol steps Jan. 6, 2021.

‘Where’s Jackie?’ President Biden gifted the Republicans who’ve been questioning his mental acuity when he asked yesterday after the whereabouts of a congresswoman who died in a car crash last month.

Search your mailbox. A Cook County Circuit Court judge has signed off on a class-action settlement with Google over complaints that Google Photos violated Illinois’ pioneering Biometric Information Privacy Act, setting the stage for checks of about $154 each to those who filed claims …
 … as Square recommended back in June.
Google’s rolling out a new feature giving you more control over how much of your personal information appears in its searches.
It’s also making its searches more climate-aware.
Coming to Google Maps: A feature called “Neighborhood Vibe.”
Here’s a list of all its announcements yesterday.

Amazon’s new gadgets. At its fall rollout, the company introduced a Kindle you can write on and speakers that’ll extend your Wi-Fi network.
It’s raising the starting pay for warehouse and delivery workers.
For the third time in five years, Chicago’s Ferrara Candy Co. faces a federal fine for exposing its employees to the risk of amputation.

Yorktown’s evolution. The former Carson Pirie Scott store in Lombard is in line to be demolished and replaced with a park and multifamily housing.
Aiming to slow the demolition of older homes, Hinsdale is creating a village-wide Historic Overlay District.

The Tribune’s revisiting and updating the still-unsolved case—today focusing on a horrific case of mistaken identity.

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Chicago Public Square mailbag. Reader Donna Rigsbee writes of Wednesday’s characterization of the devastation across Cuba’s tobacco farms as an upside to Hurricane Ian’s rampage: “I despise smoking and American corporate tobacco but … tobacco and cigars are a big international product for Cuba and a way for a lot of people to make a living. Now some of them no longer have homes or jobs.”
Something you want to say? Write Square a letter.
 Reader Mike Braden made this edition better.

‘He neither deserved nor would have wanted a somber, subdued remembrance.’ Farewell to a friend: Charlie Schumacher—among many other things, a colleague to your Square columnist in his time as assistant WGN-TV news director and reporter/managing editor at Rivet—is dead at 62.
Rogers Park-born ex-CBS News White House correspondent Bill Plante has died at 84.

A Square public service announcement

‘Most important election in history? This time they’re right!’ That’s the topic as The Nation’s national affairs correspondent John Nichols speaks—online and in-person—Oct. 9 at Chicago’s Third Unitarian Church (just off the Green Line’s Austin stop). To join online, call 773-626-9385 or email thirdunitarianchurch@gmail.com.

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Mailchimp relents. Square arrived in email inboxes later than usual twice this week, evidently because Mailchimp’s capricious and mysterious Omnivore security system didn’t like something in Monday’s and Wednesday’s editions. (Your guess is as good as ours; the company refuses to elaborate.)
But chalk up a victory for the “please escalate this problem to a manager” approach: “Your account has a good history of sending and engagement, a healthy reputation, and … [so] we’ve placed a bypass on the account to avoid similar reviews.”

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