Here's a letter from today's SMH:
The Herald has published the crowd estimate at the Mardi Gras as 300,000 people ("Heavenly night, hell of a morning after", March 9). This seems extremely unlikely. The City to Surf is the most easily measurable street crowd in Sydney, with all participants numbered. Is it believable that five times this number was squeezed onto the footpaths of Darlinghurst?
I drove across the Harbour Bridge in the early evening with far less traffic than one would get for a crowd of 20,000 at the Football Stadium or SCG. I was in the Darlinghurst area late in the night at a pub which was lively, but by no means crowded.
Did one in 12 people in greater Sydney really come to Oxford Street to watch this parade? The Herald should apply the same journalistic acid to these claims as it would to any other data. If it did, I would be saved from sending this same letter every year.
Andrew Coorey, Darling Point
As the man says, same non-story every year.