What news do you believe more: the printed media or the televised media?
Why do you believe either of them? Do you know the real purpose of media is? That the only purpose of news media is to incite you? To play on your emotions. To prompt you to believe the worst of every human, regardless of what job that person holds.
A cynical woman told me once: believe nothing when it comes to the news. I was all of fourteen, still idealistic, and in love with words. Well, I’m still in love with words, even though my teens are decades behind me. However, I now know the absolute power words give any outlook, any belief, and any “truth” held.
Let’s get one thing straight
Media’s REAL and UNDERLYING “truth” is that its sole purpose is to sell advertising. It’s designed to pick up any story that talks about misery, hate, or half-truths. It’ll run with it until a worse story comes up; until another shocking story rears its head. Why? People will buy into it. In buying the media’s stories, Jane Doe, John Q Public, and their children see the advertising that literally pays for media’s existence.
Don’t believe me? Count how many commercials play in the 30 minute segment of your local news on a Wednesday. Count the ads in Monday’s paper in section A alone; count the ads in your favorite magazine. Don’t get me started on the commercials on sports channels, or the ads in sports sections and magazines!
But, how are advertisers going to get your eyes to see their offerings? By catering to the news media that sells the most. What does the media use as its way of selling? By “reporting” on scandals, the worst humans have to offer.
But, we have the right to know what’s happening!
We have the right to know, yes. What we don’t need is the constant judge, jury and executioner of the media during a scandal. Don’t you realize that yammering on any one type of person taints the rest of that career with distrust?
Let’s start with the police. The first target of the media.
But, aren’t all police corrupt?
If you believe the media, in any of its myriad forms, then yes. If you believe the every day that you see, then absolutely NOT.
Yes, there are bad apples in the police force. But, the overwhelming majority of the police forces across the country work their butts off! They’re the first responders to anything criminal, or a home dispute, or an accident. They have a split second, maybe two, to make a decision. They’re often the first killed when a situation goes awry.
But, does the media point that out? No. The media, televised and written, cover mostly the ones who aren’t the good guys. They play and replay ad infinitum (and ad nauseum) the part of the story that makes “news”; that sells the magazine, newspaper and televised event.
Why? Because it sells. The more media tells and retells a story, and even makes a judgment without real evidence, the more advertising is put in front of millions of eyes. The more advertising, the more sales for the advertisers. And so, media willingly retells, embellishes and comments on the stories it tells.
What about the deaths of the famous?
All right, let’s look at that: The unexpected death of a celebrity. Do we have the right to learn about the death? Right? Not really; they’re private citizens, same as you and me. Do we want to know? Yes, because they lived differently than us. Do we have the right or even need to learn about the lurid details of what may have led up to the death? No. “Want to” is not a substitute for “need to”.
But, does the media care? Nope. Anything celebrities do (or don’t do because of a death) sells. Media picks up the first information, embellishes and drags out the already sad fact of the death. Do we really need to have a death played out (and unsubstantiated innuendos) over the course of sixteen days, twenty days or even a month? Why does the mere mention of a doctor’s name earn so much attention? Do we need rumor as fact? No, we don’t.
But, doing so sells. As before, the more media gives us morbidity, scandal and so on, advertisers get their brands and products in front of a million eyes.
Think of every business that’s been touched by the media. What did you learn? How much lying a business man or businesswoman does? Did that add to your knowledge of how many thousands of business people who don’t lie? No; it merely made you suspicious of everyone in business.
Some stories are about the good things.
Yes, some of them are. About one in ten, if that many. Count how many of those stories are in your local paper. Three in section A, and buried somewhere in the last few pages? Now, count how many are stories with a hook of discord, distrust, anger, hate, and displaced emotions.
That’s what sells: the media is in the business of getting you riled up. They don’t always interview those who could offer suggestions on how to “fix” the problem the media is pushing. They want to sell you on the misery, the worst of what we humans do to each other.
Because it sells, and advertisers want their brands in front of as many eyes as possible.
Is there a chance that the man-child actually did threaten the cop? Yes, there is that chance, but leave that to the forensic teams; let them find the evidence that exonerates either the man or the cop. Is there a chance that the doctor who last saw the celebrity gave more than he should have? Yes, there is that chance, but again, it’s up to the forensics to prove or disprove this.
So, what am I supposed to do with the news?
Take a step back and really listen, really look at the “news” being reported. Put away the emotions. Don’t take it at face value. Don’t personalize it if it really has nothing to do with you; the families of these people being reported are already dealing with the media. And don’t, in any way, shape or form, believe it for an instant until other evidence comes out.
If you let the media incite you, if you let the media stir up the emotions of something that doesn’t have a thing to do with you, then the media wins. And so does its master, the advertisers.
How do you feel about this? Have you a logical, well-rounded comment to make? Have you an emotional, knee-jerk reaction? Is there such a thing as a logical, but knee-jerk reaction to this? How about an emotional, but well-rounded comment?
Let me know!
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