That is such a good question. Every time I turn on the news or read the newspaper, I always find bad news. What about the good news? Where is that at?
Unfortunately, bad news is more attention grabbing. Let's say you are a news producer and you have two news stories: one features gripping video of firefighters battling a huge blaze, and the other is a story about Girl Scouts raising money for charity by selling cookies in the park. Which one is going to get more people to stay tuned?
...there's an old saying in the newspaper business, I forget who said it, but it's "If it bleeds, it leads."
Because when a dog bites a man it is natural, where as when a man bites a dog, it is unnatural.
I think it is made news because it has the potential of upsetting us. If there good news were all that happened, there would be no news at all. We are curious for the uncommon and ugly. How pitiful.
The old adage "If it bleeds, it leads" is so true.
Something shocking captures our attention. Partly we want to stay informed, but also we want to feel a sigh of relief that "Phew! That didn't happen to us!"
I think humans have a natural tendency to focus on the negative as part of an old biological survival instinct. We need to make sure that shape up ahead isn't a lion about to pounce and eat us. So, since our minds are already on the negative track, so to speak, it's easy to get attracted by negative news.
I also think there is a big element of how we have allowed our society to evolve: how many times have you bought a newspaper or watched all the way to the end of the news to read/see the headline news (that is usually traumatic in some way).
If we chose to not buy that paper, then by the basic economic principle of supply and demand, the paper would start choosing different headline stories. For the TV news, write or call them.
There are metrics for how many viewers/listeners/readers a single letter or phone call represents. If more people contacted the news companies and asked for more wholesome stories, it would send the message that a trend of people wanting wholesome stories is rising.
As a friend once told me, we can choose to water the tree of positive or negative. That choice manifests in what we think about and what we do - including what news we choose to consume.
For anyone who isn't willing to give up the news entirely because he/she feels a need to stay in touch, ask yourself if you are skimming the news or if you are immersing yourself in it - and what is it doing for you?
Good point! I don't know the answer... But I think people feel they should know what is happening around them and to them that means whatever is urgent.
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