How to Get Real News


If you are getting your news from the TV only, you have my sympathies. This may be the worst way to learn about what is going on the world. If you never pick up a newspaper, magazine, book, listen to radio news, or read various online news sites then I cannot even fathom what you think of the world!

TV news is there to do one thing….keep you glued to the set. Delivering valuable information is secondary. If that means rushing to judgment on a story then they are going to do it. If that means leading off with the most violent story of the day to make sure you stay tuned in, then that is what they will do. “If it bleeds it leads,” as they say in the news biz.

I certainly can’t tell people what to think about the rest of the world. I can just advise folks to try and get a few different perspectives. You wouldn’t go to just one doctor if he told you that a leg amputation was needed. You would get a second and even third opinion hopefully. The same holds true for the news. Just because “Channel 2 Action News” tells you that murder and chaos is all around you, you might want to read the local paper and local news websites or actually talk to your neighbors about what’s going on in your community.

I tell people all the time that if I watched Fox News I would believe anything those hot blond anchors told me. If they said ISIS was attacking all the Piggly Wigglys in South Dakota, then it must be true! That’s why I don’t watch Fox News….or CNN or HLN. I don’t need to open myself up to beautiful women telling me what I need to think about the world. They are too persuasive! It’s no accident that TV news hires the most attractive people to spew out the “important” news. Again, they need you glued to the set. Can’t have ugly anchors in HD anyway.

A prime example of why not to watch the TV news too much happened today when CNN mistook a “sex toy flag” for an ISIS banner at a rally. I don’t expect TV reporters to be perfect, but that is about as far off track as a report can get! They don’t take the time to get it right. Instead TV news stations are too concerned with getting the information, correct or not, out to the world.

There’s nothing wrong with catching the TV news maybe once a week. More than that is a detriment in my opinion. You will be living in a constant state of fear as they try to scare you into being a regular viewer to keep up with the murder and mayhem. Mix in other sources of news from the world of audio and text. It will help balance out your view of your community and the world. By the way, it’s probably not in our best interest to keep up with the other 7 billion people on Earth. It is hard enough to keep up with our little tribes we see on a daily basis.

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Shane McLendon
Wannabe geek and FLOW Seeker