No News is No News

I haven’t watched the news in years. I stopped watching when we, as a nation,  first went to the desert to find a man about some bombs. At that time, we detoured into another country that also had sand to find a man that was a bully. See when you know people that were in that huge sand box, watching the news wasn’t so much about the general state of the world and our actions in the world. There had been incidences where people had been watching TV and saw something. That something had been reported in real time and those people watching hadn’t been given notice that the occurrence had occurred. I didn’t want that to happen to me. So I stopped watching the news.

It’s been many years since I last watched the news regularly. I’m not a news nazi. I don’t turn off the TV if it inadvertently gets put on the evening news. I just don’t try to find a channel covering news. I don’t think I’ve missed much by not tuning into current events. If I want to know something, I know how to acquire that information. If something really big happens, I know that I will find out. Because big events have a way of making themselves known through various other outlets that don’t have me watching the news directly.

News stories are typically as follows: someone died, someone got swindled out of a bunch of money, politicians are fighting each other and one or more celebrities are acting poorly. On any given day, those stories are what gets reported with differing names depending on who the story is actually about. The individual names change, the news stories do not. And I just don’t care. Unless it directly impacts me and my life, those same news stories being reported again and again with minor variations in theme just don’t interest me. If it does directly impact me, trust me, someone will tell me in some way that doesn’t include me watching the news.

This past week is a prime example. I didn’t find out about Boston or Texas by watching the news. I was told from various other social and media outlets. So my ability to know what is happening in the world around me isn’t detrimentally effected by shutting off the evening and late night news. But my quality of life is so much better for not listening to the drivel that passes for news today. Important information gets filtered to me while I cut out the bullshit that is routinely reported. Win-Win. For me at least.

I might start watching the news if they gave me stories about humanitarian efforts in little known areas or achievements by people who no one had thought would be achievers or something different from the typical stories I listed above. But that doesn’t happen. Won’t happen. We have a serious homogenization of the news going on. And where a few years ago or a few decades ago, you could get different news from differing news outlets, that just doesn’t happen anymore. It could be because most news is owned by big conglomerates that own several news outlets and pump out the same news stories. Don’t get me wrong, some news organizations do slant the news depending on their political and philosophical outlooks but they are still reporting the same stories. It’s just done with a conservative slant or a liberal slant or a religious slant. Same shit, same shit.

I stopped watching the news many years ago and it hasn’t effected by ability to gather information about the things I want to know about. I don’t notice the loss of not watching the news. Not one bit. If anything, it has made my life better. The information I receive is more streamlined and tailored to what interests me. I feel that all in all, I am better off not watching the news. How sad is that?

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2 Responses to No News is No News

  1. Sunflowerrei says:

    I can understand where you’re coming from. I watch the news quite a bit–not every night, but most nights–because otherwise, I’m really good at being clueless as to what’s going on around me. Sometimes, it’s important to watch things that aren’t my cup of tea. But for major news coverage–i.e., this past week–after the initial turning to the news, I shut it off. I’m from NYC. I carry memories of 9/11 and seeing the towers burn and fall on TV for months afterward. Watching Boylston Street blow up over and over was not going to do me any good.

    • DR Slaten says:

      As an assignment, one of my high school teachers had us reading newspapers from other countries. Some from Africa and Asia. It was incredibly eye opening to see what American news was leaving out. Really important things. But it was even more eye opening to see what they were keeping as part of the news sacrificing to my mind “real news” for pieces with celebrities or such.

      I am sure that the feeding frenzy this past week was just as bad as when 9/11 happened and we first went to the desert. Like piranhas scenting fresh blood to boost ratings.