The following list is not directed at any individual or organization in particular, but attempts to touch upon trends your humble writer believes come in to conflict with news’ main purpose, which is to inform.
- Please deliver the news without opinion or spin. I will make up my own mind on what conclusions to draw thank you.
- News is intended to be informative not entertaining. It should not be forced in to entertainment’s mold. If it happens to be entertaining great, but that is not it’s primary purpose. Spock (Nothing against pediatricians, but I refer to the techie variation.) would likely be my favorite newsreader if such an odd reality construct were possible. Not a Trekkie per se, but I would find his deadpan more authentic than the news as dramatic theater trend that is so popular nowadays.
- Facts please, not theories unless presented as such. Don’t present vagaries costumed as news that leave me with more questions than when I began the article or news spot.
- Stop the AP newsfeed abuse. Too often the same story “same text” is regurgitated ad nauseam across outlets causing one to worry, “What if the one designated person who actually researched this bad boy had an off day and got it wrong in the first place?” thus causing also rans to proliferate inaccuracies sans vetting.
- OpEd contributors and newsreaders are intended to relay and discuss the news, not become the topic of the news story themselves. Or so I thought. News persons interviewing news persons about what another news person said on another news show on another news network? Really? Just plain old why? Like playing a game of seven degrees of separation from actual relevance.
- Why so many shows? Why the paucity of real guests? Why so many talking heads, often on the company dole, that may or may not actually be experts in the field or topic being discussed? Is it because people who actually generate news opt out of this nonsense? Is it that there are too many shows and too few people in the news to feed the insatiable beast that is the multi-channeled 24/7 news cycle? Perhaps it is because some news worthy folks are actually busy doing something other than talking on TV?
- Why so many commercials for news shows? Truth be told most fair citizens seem to have chosen their preferred flavor of news much like Red/Blue, Android/iPhone, Chevy/Ford, Steelers/Cowboys or Pepsi/Coke and no amount of commercials will change their allegiance. (In the interest of full disclosure emotional allegiances tied to for-profit entities, sports, tech, political or otherwise baffle me. A tangential ramble for another day.) Willfull dogmatic paralysis in isolation stifling intelligent discourse seems an issue plaguing this nation these days, but not the topic of this particular rant so I will move on.
- Relevance please. Hours are spent on nonsense having to do with absolutely nothing of any real importance. Spot check. Relevance: 1a : relation to the matter at hand b : practical and especially social applicability : pertinence 2: the ability (as of an information retrieval system) to retrieve material that satisfies the needs of the user (m-w.com)
- Lastly stop the charade that news is for my betterment and that one entity is better for me than another. It is a business seeking product. That product is gathering the eyes of the consumer so those eyes can then be sold to advertisers. (Lesson learned years ago courtesy GE and NBC.) Nothing personal, strictly business. I have no issue with it. That is capitalism.
I was thinking of creating a news reader that can filter out certain configurable words and phrases, but nonsense is so rampant I fear I will only be reading articles like reviews of basket weaving shows in Paduka (No offense to Paduka intended, nor were any baskets harmed in the writing of this rant.).
I do not appreciate topical zealots even when (especially when) they are attempting to pander to a demographic I may identify with. As in real life I do not seek out people who agree with me all the time. Boring. I also do not seek out people whose only method of disagreement is an argument. A mark of insecurity, if not outright intellectual sloth, often times it seems. If you truly believe what you are saying what sense does it make to get upset. Tiring. Rest in your truth. Debate with civility.
In the interest of staying up on current affairs I continue to read the news (I have all, but abandoned TV news), but it seems to be increasingly difficult (borderline impossible at times) to sift actual news out of the murky waters of modern media.