Wait a minute, Chemung CoC: How is this NOT an advocacy session?

Quoting Chamber president Kevin Keeley, The Star Gazette reports:

“This is an information session, not an advocacy session. It’s not a hearing, not a debate,” he said. “It’s simply an opportunity for the chamber constituency, which is the business and professional community, to learn more about some fundamental facets of the gas drilling phenomena.”

The 90-minute program will include brief presentations from: Mike Atchie from Chesapeake Energy Corp.; Dale Duncan, Schlumberger operations manager, Northeast Basin; Larry L. Michael, executive director of Workforce & Economic Development, Pennsylvania College of Technology, and Richard C. Stedman, an associate professor at Cornell University in the Department of Natural Resources.


With a list of presenters frontloaded with representatives of Chesapeake and Schlumberger and a booster like Mr Michael, what else could  this forum legitimately be called but an advocacy session?

If it’s really information – accurate information – that you want, why would you turn to industry representatives to get it?  Do you get your car-buying advice from the salesman at the dealership?

And why can’t regular citizens attend what was apparently first advertised as a public meeting, so they can hear what you’re hearing?  What are you afraid of?

Readers, please, feel free to submit your ideas… Perhaps we can help the Chemung County Chamber of Commerce find the right noun.