In the 80’s my intake of news shifted from live to print media. Back then my brother was a news producer. He was the one who ultimately decided what would be broadcasted on the 6 o’clock TV NEWS show in his area. So, I asked him:
“What is the criteria you use for the selection process?”
“Oh, that’s easy, he said. “If it raises eyebrows it’s news. If it doesn’t, it’s not news.”
“That ain’t much,” I countered.
“I agree,” he replied.
That was the day I switch to print media. I didn’t want someone force feeding me with sensationalism. When I pick up a newspaper or magazine, I can decide what I will intake. Nowadays with the Internet it is even easier to pick and choose what is relevant. Knowing what to look for is part of being a responsible customer of information products. You can decide what you will allow into your brain.
Living the dream means having a sense of rightness. Choosing to consume sensationalism is like eating junk food. It might taste good and even raise an eyebrow or two, yet the gain is short-term. Murders, explosions, and car accidents are fascinating. Yet becoming enthralled with degrading and debilitating news will weaken your resolve to live at peace with the world.
I’m not talking about becoming a hermit or a recluse; quite the opposite. I suggest we dig into topics and news tidbits that have meaning and long-lasting effects. Having a clear sense of what is important to you will enable you to bypass the silly, and embrace the significant.
What criteria do you use to select and consume news?