In the news

I don’t watch the news.  Occasionally I will read a news link sent to me by a friend or that I see on social media.  Often Paul will tell me about a story and I will stare blankly at him, having no idea what he’s talking about.  He’s a news man, I’m not.  I feel much more comfortable staying oblivious to the horrors of the world, reluctantly dipping my toes into the real world when something catches my curiosity.  I’d much prefer to watch cartoons with Mr 4 than a gruesome story on the 6 o’clock news.

Some might say that I am being ignorant about the world around me, that I am an adult and I *should* be watching the news and keeping up with the current affairs.  I say pfft to that.  I don’t watch the news because I am immature, I don’t watch the news because it’s a self preservation.

There are so many images of death and destruction available at the touch of our fingertips.  How does it help for me to watch these scenes, day after day?  I am not helping anyone by exposing myself and my son to these images.  Watching those images and scenes doesn’t mean there will be less of works on a sensationalised scaled.  The more shocking footage is, the more chance there is that people will tune in.  We become immune to it, tuning out the heartbreak.

I prefer to digest my news in bites, choosing what I want to take in, looking online rather than sitting through televised sensationalism.  There’s no prizes for the person who can take in the most gruesome news, no one wins that race.  Someone is not more important because they can stand more pictures of dying children than anybody else.

News isn’t action.  News does nothing more than inform, it is up to you what you do with that information.  Do you store it away, using it to torture yourself with?  Or does it light a fire in your belly and make you want to take action for the injustices carried out in the stories?  News programs should be about the latter.  I think they’ve lost that integrity and instead turned into a tabloid, using as much emotive footage as possible.

I’m not ashamed that I don’t watch the news.  I enjoy watching vampire cartoons with Mr 4, happy that the characters reach a resolution at the end of 30 minutes.  It’s not real life and that’s why I like it.  Some days life is hard enough, so I have to shut out the horrors for a little while.

Do you watch the news?  Are you disappointed in the caliber of journalism?

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10 thoughts on “In the news

  1. Kathy

    I watch the news, but not as religiously as I used to (and I used to be a journalist). I usually watch SBS and it does give you perspective of the world – usually suffering, but sometimes joy shines through. I am very disillusioned with the sensationalism of a lot of news – I’m sure it is far worse than when I was reporting – and I see the news agenda as thriving on fear. That’s why I like Upworthy, even though I know it can be contrived for maximum social sharing. I like that good news, good causes can go viral in our big, ugly, beautiful world.

  2. Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit

    I don’t watch the news. I definitely don’t watch it at the alloted times they push it on us. When I first wake up, during family dinner time and right before bed. All three time slots are the worst possible time to take on negative information. It sets you up for a bad day, bad family bonding time and bad sleep. I’m with you … I avoid it.
    I do however scan the news headlines on the computer at around morning tea time. That way I can see what is happening in the world without having to see pictures or read all the gruesome details.

  3. Neets

    I’m with you Tegan. I hate watching the news. It’s depressing and full of death. I would rather watch the Wiggles with my kids any day. x

  4. Emma Fahy Davis

    I watch the ‘news’ – and I use inverted commas because as a journalist I continue to be amazed by what they are trying to pass off as news these days. For me, seeing Saddam Hussein’s dead face on the cover of the daily newspaper after he was executed a few years back symbolises the shift between news for the public good and the public need-to-know, and salacious shock-tactics for readership/ratings.

  5. Cassandra

    The news is on in my house every night, sometimes more than one lot of news. I try so hard not to watch it. I draw the whole time, or I leave the room and go sing or play guitar. If other people in my house want to see those things, that’s their business but personally I find it a very grim and skew view of the world. Even though I’ve had depression and anxiety my whole life, I’ve never stopped being an eternal optimist, no matter what happens. When I was little, my Mum told me to ignore the news because for every bad thing they show, there are a hundred good things they choose to ignore. Best advice ever! x

  6. Pinky Poinker

    I half watch it but usually I’m cooking dinner and in and out. I do watch The Project which gives a round up but even then it only has half my attention. I agree about protecting your son from the horrible things on it Tegan.

  7. Toni @ Finding Myself Young

    I watch the news, but it usually just makes me sad and reminds me of all the horrible things in the world. I prefer cartoons too.

    And if you want really fake, sensationalised overtly emotional stories, watch A current affair. Seriously I just laugh at most of their reporting now.

  8. Alicia

    I am always rolling my eyes at the sensationalism and speculation on the news. I also don’t like hearing the bad stuff.
    I don’t mind watching the news, I like catching up on what’s happening, but it seems I don’t usually find myself in front of the telly when the news is on!

  9. SarahD @SnippetsandSpirits

    I would watch the news if I could but it is bedtime routine then. I do feel ignorant at times when speaking to my Dad on the phone who listens to news all day on the radio and TV, he tells me news from Australia and he is all the way over in Ireland. I think you can take what you want from the news it is absolutely sensationalised and edited to the last but I think it is good to know what is going on in this mad world.

  10. Alison

    No. I avoid it like the plague. It is depressing and anxiety provoking. Important stuff always filters through to me anyway. It is not because I do not care about the plight of my fellow humans, it is the exact opposite, I cannot bear the ignorance, hatred, stupidity and violence that the olds presents us with, day in day out. Not to mention, it presents a very skewed view of life. There is not nearly so much evil in the world as the news would have us believe and they often flat out lie or manipulate headlines, statistics, even the footage they show is often stock footage not related to the story.

    Sometimes, as you said, I will click a link if it is sent to me. I nearly always regret it. Sometimes, when logging in to Yahoo I get a glimpse of a headline or two that makes me shudder. There is nothing new under the sun, so why torture myself like that when I can do nothing about it anyway? So, in a word, no.


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