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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Top News Sells Out To Fluff!

I don't even know where to start? My heart goes out to families of the 9 soldiers killed in Afghanistan. I can not even imagine their grief at not only having lost a loved one, but at the legitimate media not having enough respect not to put them on the same headline page as the release of "Hellboy II" and the birth of a Hollywood couples twins. It was a nice they got a place of honor above the story of the gay Bishop, nice touch.

Do they report on what some of the brighter minds in our country think may be a way to end this war? No, that doesn't keep you locked in the same way a review of the movie with the bat and the young guy that died because his life was so busy. I need more information about that, I feel left out of the loop. Try to put yourself in these families positions. You go looking for information and you find that the info was given by someone who couldn't be identified because the families hadn't been notified. Didn't stop them from telling it, or the newsies from reporting it. Ah, people of honor!

How many years do we watch our people die before we demand some answers? We aren't going to get them from the news, that's for sure. They weren't just on the band wagon over the war, they were the band wagon. That's back when it was the thing to do. If there aren't deaths in the 2 wars, they don't even mention it anymore. Instead they talk about what famous athlete is sleeping with what famous singer. Is there no integrity left in journalism? Don't look at me, I am looking for my own answers.

I watch very little television anymore. Nothing to watch. There is a new dog reality show coming out, I suppose that does it for some people. You can't read the newspaper in Baltimore anymore, you don't get the same effect with only one paper. We have a generation getting their "news" off of shows on the comedy channel. That's good. We have nowhere to turn anymore. I'm not sure we ever did, but it sure did feel that we did. I suppose I should just except that this is the way it goes, it's just hard to do when you know there are so many in pain and the newsies are talking about the premier of last weekends movies set new all time highs.


Slammermike said...

Boy, you sure nailed this one. The media is out for shock effect and ratings. Informing their public has become secondary.

They determine what the news is and then determine what importance they will give to it. Through their reporting they try to mold and form public opinion. That molding is aimed at perpetuating the news story to future reports. There is little or no news reported on Afghanistan and Iraq anymore. What there is printed or reported on TV is buried back by page 5 or 6.

They try to whip up a frenzy on gas prices now. The reporting on celebrities is way over the top. I could care less about Britanny Spears and much less about her 16 year old sister being pregnant and delivering a baby. They glamorized that whole ordeal. The media brought attention to it making is look cool to the teenie-boppers. Then that lead to a story about a pact between 17 high school girls to get pregnant and raise there children together. That seemed to create the shock effect the media wanted so they reported it for several days until someone came out and said it may not have been a pact after all. Then the story disappeared. Again they gave the story national attention before they investigated the facts. Again they glamorized children having babies. Some kids will be lead to this because it is now cool and gets attention. There is no sense of responsibility.

An example close to home is my daughter's roommate who was a freshmen in college last year. We met her and her family the first day of school on moving in day. They were excited about their daughter's future. They were proud of her accomplishments in high school. Half way through the first semester the girl gets pregnant and withdraws from school. The girl still keeps in touch with her school friends and regularly sends updates and sonagram photos of the baby. Mom & Dad are putting on an addition to the house for daughter & baby and I guess the father when he is home from school. I can't help but think that the media's glamorization of this type of moral behavior some how helped contribute to this kind of behavior. Fortunately my daughter and the friends at school see this situation as a sad one with a damaged future for the girl. A difficult and expensive time for her parents in what should be their retirement years and a questionable and difficult future for the baby. (Anyway that is an entirely different subject.)

An example of the media deciding what is and isn't news came up recently with the Jesse Jackson-Barack Obama story and the Rene Marie, Black National Anthem story. The Baltimore print and broadcast media gave little to no coverage of these stories except with mentions on their editorial page with readers opinions. I was appalled at Ms. Marie's disrespect to our Country's National Anthem. As far as the Jesse Jackson Story I wonder what kind of national attention would have been given if Don Imus had made those same remarks about Barack Obama. I never saw the story in the Baltimore Sun.

As far as TV news they go with sensational photos no matter where the news is. If it is a big fire or a car chase in LA they run the video and tell us about the vacant warehouse that burned to the ground with no injuries in East BF Kansas just so they can run the 20 second video clip. Their big thing now in the TV news is to advertise their stations shows as news. American Idol an Survivor Egypt is not news!!

Also the weather is receiving way too much coverage. It used to be that there was a 2-3 minute segment on weather that told you what to expect in the up coming days. Now they have all this slick new technology that has Dopler Radar and it is interactive on the internet. You are able to zoom in on the map to your street and to your address to see if it is raining at your house. What is wrong with looking out the window?? Then they give you a weather portion of the news 4 times in an hour broadcast. Chances are is you are calling for 6 inches of snow and you have a half inch now it will be snowing at your house during all 4 weather forecasts during that news program. You can check out the window to confirm then decide if you have to run to the store for milk, bread, tuna and toilet paper. (I don't know what it is about milk, bread and tuns that makes you have to go to the bathroom.)

The news anchors are presented as respected authorities on all that they report. When in reality all they are is glorified news readers. They do no reporting, no investigating of stories. They read what is in front of them. If they don't have the right look or project the informed journalist image and do it in a next door neighbor kind of way then they are let go and another pretty face comes in for ratings. Jut like they change their news sets for a slicker more exciting look.

awb said...

God forbid you try and raise your children that marriage is the way to go! People look at you like you have 3 heads. It's getting harder to find like thinking people. My eco friendly, Swiss style solar commune in the mountains is looking better every day!