Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Case Against News

I opened CNN this morning to see the public's insight on the Deepwater Horizon incident vs. what I know internally. These are the headlines, word for word pasted here. Take note of the buzz words.

How will Greek tragedy play out?
UK's Brown apologizes for 'bigot' gaffe
* Thai police, protesters clash
* Markets fall amid Greek debt crisis
* Myanmar leaders resign ahead of vote
* Iraq PM denies secret prison torture
* Pilot blamed for Kenya Airways crash
* Gulf oil slick may be burned off
* U.N. eyes tribunals for pirates
* Car bomb attack kills 4 Pakistani police
* China praised for repealing AIDS ban
* U.S.-born cleric in al Qaeda video
* Danish restaurant named world's best
* Mourinho hits out at Barca 'obsession'
* Kuwait comic publisher lauded

Nearly every one has a negative, fear-inducing connotation. Sometimes we even need to limit our media consumption because of reasons such as this. It's not in order to make ourselves ignorant, but to limit the negative effect it has on our thinking and actions. They choose topics and brandish them with words to instill a response from us to be careful or have some resentment toward a particular party. It makes us cautious, less likely to travel and to live in a state of walking on eggshells.

Take Fox News as another example. The people who work there are very gifted at choosing stories that seem mundane, but are spun in a way to project a right-wing bias. Whenever I watch it (it’s set on default here at an oil/gas company go figure), I notice how they can spin any story toward the political right. What does housewife Jane think watching all this? Hate the Dems more, impeach Obama, guns good, capitalism good. It pushes so much drivel into her brain at warp speed that she’s unable to make any opinions for herself. This isn’t to say any extreme left-wing programs don’t do the same.

According to news websites, the world will always be in a state of chaos – that will never change. When is the last time a news article made you check something? Bearish market news – check your investments to make sure they’re ok. We’ve all done it. We do things in reaction to news more often than we like to think.

1 comment:

john said...

I agree with what you're saying here.

Media companies, key word companies, are in it for money. More viewers they have more money they make. It's sad but to get all those viewers is to manipulate the story, and try and grab attention by using those "scary" words.

News should be consumed from many different sources, and even then be very fickle about what you believe.