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Does reading the News really help?

By June 22, 2020July 8th, 2020No Comments

1/ Do you know why you read/watch the news? Or How you choose the news? Have you thought about its relevance in your life? Does following the News really help? #News #Media #MediaConsumption #MentalHealth #Stress A thread.

2/ Let me ask you: Leaving the pandemic aside, when was the last time you made a major life decision based on a news story? Never really, right? From car chases to robberies, crimes and celebrity overdose, the News ecompasses the juiciest & bland bits of happenings around us.

3/ If a story is headlined: “Is acid rain ruining the #TajMahal?,” you are sure to read it! Why? Because headlines are meant to manipulate you. By drawing attention to certain details or facts, a headline can affect what existing knowledge is activated in your head.

4/ By its choice of phrasing, a headline can influence your mindset as you read so that you later recall details that coincide with what you were expecting.

5/ Therefore, explicitly misdirected/biased news stories influence you, no matter what you are told after that. What’s more? Despite the content not supporting the headline, you still read it. And, it is not even relevant to you! 

6/ A vast majority of news we read is irrelevant. It doesn’t tell you what to do with your life or better it. We are swayed by our friends, day-to-day situations and family, than any information on the news! 

7/ Most of the value we get from consuming news is having something to talk about with other people who consume the news. The relevance of news depends on one’s priorities and life experiences.

8/ News audiences usually make their own meanings, in ways that spring naturally from their experience. The same news story can be read by different people as an ‘international’ story, a ‘tech’ story, or a ‘financial’ story; sometimes a trivial or titillating story is appreciated for its civic implications.

9/ Despite the news being a cross-media phenomenon, research points out that it has high redundancy. It comes down to a simple comparison – A news show could work one of two ways, they could say: 

10 / One – “See what important things happened in the world. We have 4 hrs of run time but if there were only a few important things then we’ll just report news on those for 1 hr and sell back the remaining, without wasting people’s time.

11/ OR, they could say: Two – “Okay, we have 4 hrs of screen time, go find whatever you can to fill it that will be the most interesting news to viewers so they stay on our channel & we get more ad revenue.”

12/ Which do you suppose it is? Obviously, the second one! In that case, it is impossible that the things they’re reporting on 95% of the time are meaningful or useful. In fact, the quality of the content naturally decreases.

13/ The only exception is highly-targeted news focused on what you’re doing in the near future or sector-based news that you CHOOSE. If finance is your area of interest, @finshots could give you a brief idea of what’s going on in the market. The same goes for people in tech, start-ups, etc.

14/ Most of the news we consume today is extremely manipulative. It drives agendas, ideologies and sells you ideas/products, etc. This menace is coupled with fake news which generates even more panic and negativity. 

15/ Similarly, once you’re on Facebook, it does everything possible to prevent you from hitting that close button. While platforms like Facebook play a role in our excessive #MediaConsumption, we are not innocent. We want to be well informed. And this is the very weakness that gives you in!.

16/ Nowadays, your first thought on something is usually not yours but someone else’s.  When all you do is consume, you are not only letting someone else hijack and direct your attention; you are also letting them think for you.

17/ Also, first-hand experience, when you’re constantly bombarded with depressing and negative news it clearly plays on you & makes you more negative, depressed & stressed out. 

18/ What this does to you is: Lowers your willpower throughout the day. That means you’ll have less energy to do your best work & be distracted…meaning you’ll have a harder time resisting things like that ice cream in your fridge.  

19/ So, the news is more like a bitter responsibility or an endured necessity for people. It is the societal version of ‘marriage.’ Not everyone wants it, but they continue to get into it one way or another, as a sort of obligation to prevent the decay of social order. 

20/ We indulge in over-consumption because we’re afraid to be bored. We’re so afraid that to avoid being bored, we are ok to drive ourselves crazy, consuming pointless, meaningless information. 

21/ Time is a limited resource. We may want to be more judicious with it. Rather than consuming irrelevant information, you could be spending time learning those long-pending skills or helping others or going for a run or just anything else that lifts you up or just in silence. 

22/ Cut out the noise from your life! Spend your time wisely! #Time #News #Media #MentalHealth 

Fin.

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