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Family Trapped in Corn Maze Called 911

I *always* get lost in those Halloween corn mazes, but never that lost that I had to call for help. That's what a family did after getting lost inside a 7-acre Salem, Massachusetts, corn maze:

A voice recording of the 911 call was made available to the media on Wednesday. The exchange:

Woman: "Hi, I just called. I'm still stuck at Connors Farms. I don't see anybody. I am really scared. It's really dark and we've got a 3-week-old baby with us."

Dispatcher: "Just relax. Calm down. Your husband is with you right?"

Woman: "Yes, but my baby?"

Dispatcher: "OK. I understand and the police officer is on the way."

Woman: "We thought this would be fun. Instead it's a nightmare. I don't know what made us do this. It was daytime when we came in. And I never take my daughter out. This is the first time. Never again."


Can't you just trample some maize and force your way out of the maze?

I kind of understand where she's coming from. They really shouldn't have taken a 3 week old with them. It's Massachusetts, so it's cold and most likely damp. They had no idea they were 25 feet from the outside. If anything, they knew they were somewhere within 7 ACRES of a maze. I really don't blame them - I don't think I would've called 911...I probably would've just yelled for help...
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Yeha, you can't just push it out of the way, but sheesh. I wonder why the people running the maze weren't keeping better watch.
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My parents have a corn field that is over 7 acres. As a kid, I ran through it all the time. It's corn. It's a very tall grass planted in neat rows by a seeder.
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I took my two year old through a corn maze a couple weeks ago and was surprised at how large and confusing it was. It's not called a maze for nothing. About halfway through, I started getting slightly concerned that if something were to happen (I turn around and my son is gone or a scarecrow comes to life and tries to eat us, for example) I would have a hell of a time finding him and getting us out of there in an appropriate amount of time. A corn maze is fun, but I can see how a parent might freak out, especially if you can't find your way out of there and it's getting dark. And you have a baby with you. I don't think this woman was "stupid" at all, as many commenters have suggested. Just panicked.
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The same story from another source has the maze owner saying that usually, people who are lost walk through the corn stalks toward the sounds of the busy nearby highway. That would seem to be common sense.
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It's too bad Neatorama doesn't have some kind of comment upvoting or +1 or thumbs up or whatever.

Otherwise, I'd definitely upvote scottdaris on here. Nice.


Also: corn maze, small child, scared at night... The Shining? I'd be a little scared too.
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We're considering a different mechanism for commenting. The negativity on this site is definitely disheartening. Even more so that the most negative commenters are also the most prolific.
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@scottdaris,Nathan Miller and Alex - I agree. It's sad really. When I first started commenting on Neatorama (and Mental Floss) it was almost as if there was an unspoken code of conduct that everyone seemed to follow that was different from other sites. I rarely comment on other sites where commenters are a negative rabble of blowhards (youtube, this means you) because they don't hold themselves to the standard that Neatorama does. We've always been able to say what we want, as long as it's not too offensive or we don't deliberately attack someone elses opinions. It's like an honor code. But lately, it has been disappearing. We can do better.
Also, for those who are overlooking it, there are simple instructions for commenting that are posted directly over the comments box. They read quite simply, "Comments aren't censored, but those that are abusive or off-topic may be edited or deleted, mmkay?"
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@Red Bunny - thank you for your comment. That reinforced my belief that we have to do something to save our comment section :)

It will need to have a balance between automatic algo (including say, a vote up/down mechanism - which doesn't exist right now) and admin intervention (which is the only thing we have right now).

The problem with the admin intervention only scheme is that it's a big time sink for admins.

In short, we're working on it! It'll take us a while, and I'm sure it'll take us a couple of iterations to get it right, but we will. It's important.
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Can we get details on the rescue operation?

This is the first time I have visited Neatorama and I love it!

I found Vonskippy's comment mean but hilarious! (I've only read the one above.)

I grew up with twisted folk. (But I am not saying there is anything wrong with Vonskippy!) My dad's "humor" was kinda mean too, and now that he is gone for two years, I really miss it. He had PTSD but we didn't call it that. In his life experience, stupid people got killed, and "gallows humor" was how survivors like him dealt with it.

I vote NO on censorship. I don't think commenting be a polite lovefest.
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Don' see what the upvoting/downvoting thing is going to do. Unless you hide comments with negative votes. And then you get voting wars. It also means censorship. Also I have NEVER seen a forum or comment section without "negative" comments. And what are "negative" comments anyway? Not conforming to the norm? 1984. If the government isn't doing it enough, at least we can! And yes, I realize you will consider this a "negative" comment as well.
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I'm highly tolerant of negative comments, so I personally don't have any issues with them.

But, looking at the larger picture, it's quite clear that negative comments have created a hostile environment that discourages other readers to participate. That is what we're trying to fix here.

Re: upvote/downvote - this is just one of the mechanisms considered. I don't think any single mechanism is enough, so we will probably use a combination of several mechanisms in the comment section.
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I've made all types of comments here, both positive and negative. I think I've seen vonskippy's one or two positive comments - yes, they do exist! Sometimes, the negative ones are good for a chuckle, though.

I try not to make personal attacks, but I will speak my mind sometimes. Some people see any contrary opinion as trolling, but sometimes it's genuinely somebody with a different opinion.

I have a cousin who operates a corn maze. They give you a map, because it's usually a fancy picture of something. A lot of work is put into a maze, and there are exits placed along the way, in case of emergency.

And who in their right mind would take a 3-week-old baby into a corn maze? The baby won't remember it. They must have had another kid with them; otherwise, it's just bizarre.
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We need to clarify something. Negative comment doesn't mean disagreeing with the post author or other commenters - we continue to welcome differing points of views on the blog, as long as those points are made in polite, constructive manners.

More and more, people leave comments that don't add any value to the discussion because they can do so easily on this blog (for example, no account registration is required before you leave a comment). These are the negative comments that we're fighting.
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Hey, Alex.

I just took s look, and there are about 5 or 6 comments I've made in other threads that are no longer there. They certainly weren't of the vonskippy variety, so you may be going down the tougher path with the censorship, interpreting things a little heavy-handedly. You're free to do whatever you like, of course. Just sayin'.
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@ted - I am serious about cutting down negativity on Neatorama.

We've started deleting negative comments that don't have any constructive values to the discussion.

The mechanism that's available to us (on WordPress) is limited - there's no voting or hiding comments. Only deletion, but that will have to do right now.

Sorry if yours have been deleted. We're not targeting anyone in particular.
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Oh, I didn't thin kyou were. I just think you were going a little heavy-handed. It's really all in the interpretation of comments, sometimes. Sometimes, if you're not glowingly agreeing with something, your comment is interpreted as negative or "not constructive". Being "not constructive" or adding "no value" is a pretty subjective thing.
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