Letter From The Editor: Our Silence On Norovirus

No, this isn’t a news report covering the latest outbreak of norovirus at sea. This is your Editor (and I’d like to think Captain) of Cruise Currents, Mike Faust. It’s time to have a serious conversation about norovirus and the reporting of these outbreaks.

Let me begin by saying I am tired of reporting on norovirus and you may have noticed Cruise Currents rarely reports on norovirus anymore. I, as Editor of Cruise Currents, have decided to limit the amount of effort our staff puts into covering norovirus as frankly – it’s not that big of a deal. Yes, while norovirus itself is a very uncomfortable illness that I’d never wish on my worst enemy, it’s actually one of the most common illnesses currently present in the United States. It continues to baffle me why many news outlets continue to report on a common illness. If CNN were to cover every outbreak of norovirus in a school, hospital, or restaurant, we’d very quickly turn the TV off.

Yes, we here at Cruise Currents have reported on norovirus outbreaks in the past. If you’ve noticed though, each of our reports from this past year covered ships with at least 10% of the passenger and crew capacity reporting symptoms of norovirus. This magic number or threshold is the number we’ve selected as the point when Cruise Currents will report on a norovirus outbreak. Let’s be honest, approximately 10% of a ship reporting symptoms of norovirus is when the matter becomes serious and newsworthy. In recent weeks, a few cruise ships have reported very low percentages of passengers reporting norovirus symptoms. To be honest, a small handful of sick passengers is not newsworthy and we’ve remained silent on the reports as to not appear sensational.

There is one big reason norovirus is widely reported by news and cruise outlets – it drives traffic. While we’d love to be the number one cruise industry news website, we need more than just a large audience to do so. We also need your respect. We could report every minor issue that comes along in the industry, but after awhile we’d seem like we are just chasing after views. We here at Cruise Currents carefully consider what we publish, ensuring we deliver truthful, useful, and rational articles.

While we continue to publish cruise industry news, you can be sure that the news we publish is news that is, well, newsworthy. Cruise Currents is all about delivering reliable and honest cruise industry articles, whether they be news or ship reviews. Cruise Currents will continue to strive to be your trustworthy and first choice cruise industry news provider.

Your Editor,

Mike Faust

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Mike Faust

Mike Faust is an avid world traveler, often found traversing city streets in Asia and Europe rather than his home city of Boca Raton. Mike has touched down in 39 countries, set sail on 35 cruises, and flown over 400,000 lifetime miles.