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Media Mania and How It Effects Our Lives: A Commentary

Most of us by the time we have reached our mid teens to early twenties have begun to make a reasonable effort to be informed, know what is going on in the world around us and we can all be fairly opinionated about it. That can be a good thing. However, when our opinions are based on sensationalism, drama and media gossip it becomes a problem.

Keeping up with the news, knowing what is going on in the world around us is important.  We need to know, however, action begets reaction.  Even something that happens hundreds of miles, even half a world away from where we live has an impact on our own life. 

World politics, the weather, volcanoes, an earthquake, a tsunami, hurricanes, major floods, a plane crash or train wreck, terrorism, a massacre of any sort, war, the economy; and even the good stuff has an effect on us and we learn about it through the media but it seems the media has gone crazy. 

Sensationalism seems to be the name of the game.  Write it so it sells, gets our attention.  Do whatever it takes to sell the news ahead of the next guy.  Make money.  News has become “big business” and no longer just a public service.  Writing and reporting the facts, the truth has fallen by the wayside for the sake of making money, being first, the top dog in the media world.

Money, it is said, is the root of all evil and sensationalism sells so write what will sell for the sake of money.  Include just enough truth so the drama will be trusted.  Media mania is crushing us.  We are not being told the truth, getting the real news.

Over the past few years I have noticed gigantic changes in how the news is reported, the way articles are written in the printed news, the body language and how people speak in radio and television presentations and I find it more than a little alarming.  Here is why. 

Without much exaggeration the majority of what we read and hear leans way, way in the direction of sensationalism, slander, gossip, exaggerations and drama.  Somebody is always trying to sell us a bill of goods or a fast way to make a buck on somebody else’s back.  That is not news.  That is not good reporting.  This sort of reporting plays on our emotions and common sense to such a degree that we react in ways that are not beneficial to us as a community.  It causes chaos and confusion.   

All it amounts to is blindsiding the public, your readers and followers and causing more issues and problems because no one can seem to report the truth without glossing it over with drama and sensationalism, stirring up a hornets’ nest.  That is not good reporting.  It leaves the public trying to figure out what is truth and what is fiction, what and what not to believe.  People react to what they hear and see and often react in a not so positive way and more problems develop.  That is not good reporting. 

If you are going to write or broadcast the news, get the facts, the truth, just the facts and nothing but the facts; don’t add to it, twist it and sensationalize it.  Don’t personalize it.  Keep your personal emotions and opinions out of it and if you can’t, then write a commentary, an editorial; write a novel, flash fiction, a short story and publish that for what it is; fiction or personal opinion. 

Fiction does not belong in world, national, state or local headlines or even on page three of your local newspaper.  Personal opinion belongs on the editorial page and that is the only place it belongs; well, maybe you can put it on your wall on Facebook but even that can be dangerous.  It is okay to be original in style but stick to the truth when you are writing or reporting the news, those important things going on in the world around us that affect the lives of each and every one of us every day.

If you are going to write, write it right and that includes spelling, punctuation and sentences that are conjugated correctly.  Learn the language and the proper way to use it.  This goes for anything you write, truth or fiction, the news, an editorial, a novel or a short story. 

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18 Responses to “Media Mania and How It Effects Our Lives: A Commentary”
  • jennifer eiffel01
    December 22nd, 2012 at 10:00 am

    Excellent. I totally agree with you. Good job!

  • Edyta N. Tehrani
    December 22nd, 2012 at 10:16 am

    I agree. You have to really read between the lines these days to get the facts of any story straight. It is often bent toward a preffered political view, sometimes important facts are being omitted altogether if they do not fit the slant. It seems that tabloid style reporting has gone into mainstream and I think that is the reason why conspiracy theories of all kinds are now so popular. You cannot really trust in what you hear or see in media anymore.

  • vickylass
    December 22nd, 2012 at 10:22 am

    The first time I went to Ulster (in the 70’s) I, of course, saw the soldiers patrolling in the streets of Belfast and in Derry. In some streets, they were ready to shoot at any time. Of corse, there was tension. Yet, i didn’t see what on British news told when they reported on the “Irish issue”. If we were to to Syria, we wouldn’t probably see so much violence as we watch on TV: Of course, there’s a war going on, but the media tends to magnify news to catch on their audiences. What we watch in the Western Hemisphere, it’s quite biased. We watch what governments want us to watch. This is a good topic you chose to write. Good share!

  • Lynn Proctor
    December 22nd, 2012 at 10:43 am

    I enjoyed your article very much, and couldn’t agree with you more. The “Up to the Minute News” has been replaced by “Up to the Minute Opinion, Pre-emptive Assumption and Hype.” But do you know what bothers me the most? No one is taking responsibility for the results that irresponsible reporting causes. One example of millions: The 2012 “End of the World” prophecy that came from our guesses about what the Mayans meant in their hyroglyphic tablets for the end of the Mayan calendar. The promotion of “news” headlines that kept referring to it have sent children into frenzies, and adults as well. Simply planting a seed of doubt or fear about something catastrophic happening to our world is immoral. It is a form of bullying. I may write an article about that. I signed on as “guest” – Lynn Proctor

  • Nali
    December 22nd, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    I agree, I think the above me have said it all

  • Margaret Boseroy
    December 22nd, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Well stated. I try to listen to public radio for news these days. Happy holidays!

  • Ruby Hawk
    December 22nd, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    Absolutely true, the news we hear is pure sensationalism. They are not professional and you can’t believe half of what you hear. Your best bet at getting the correct news is the news magazines.

  • johnmariow
    December 22nd, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    I agree with you about the media in general.

    If authors don’t add their personal touch to an article they are writing, the chances of accidental plagiarism skyrocket. I think that they must clearly separate the facts from their opinion in the article. If it is clear to the reader what is fact and what is fiction, the article will be interesting and it will be unique from the millions of other articles on the same topic.

  • johnmariow
    December 22nd, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    fiction? I meant to write opinion, not fiction.

  • Kharla Jolly
    December 22nd, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    Our public news isn’t distorted, or exaggerated.The national news, is changed to make it more interesting and more appealing to the audience. Thanks, for a wonderfully written article,with a lot of excellent points.Good job and it’s so nice to see your face again!I missed you,these past months that you weren’t posting on Triond.I hope your family is doing well, Merry Christmas Annie!

  • Kharla Jolly
    December 22nd, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    Our public news isn\’t distorted, or exaggerated.The national news, is changed to make it more interesting and more appealing to the audience. Thanks, for a wonderfully written article,with a lot of excellent points.Good job and it\’s so nice to see your face again!I missed you,these past months that you weren\’t posting on Triond.I hope your family is doing well, Merry Christmas Annie!

  • shelpeare
    December 22nd, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    Hi A. Bromley, good to see you here again. It has been a while.I agree with your article. Untruths sell. People build up celebrities and watch them crumble and fall back down with delight. One celeb referred to the meltdown of another celeb (who I will not name) as the greatest show on earth.

  • Pete Macinta
    December 22nd, 2012 at 10:55 pm

    You wrote, “If you are going to write, write it right and that includes spelling, punctuation and sentences that are conjugated correctly.” I have been noticing the news is getting sloppier all the time. I have seen a few mistakes in AP copy. Yahoo! kindly sent me book and I do appreciate it, but some of their editors that write are making blunders.

    Looking at the past presidential debates I see sensationalism has infected some of the “moderators.” I really doubt we will ever see an honest debate again.

  • Val Mills
    December 22nd, 2012 at 11:43 pm

    Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the sensationalism focused on the good things happening in our communities.

  • Amanda Moonfire Lim
    December 23rd, 2012 at 1:09 am

    Couldn’t agree more. A lot of drama stirring news reporting surrounds us that most of the good things that happen around us gets ignored.

    Speaking of sensationalism, this is the reason why stars seem to have a life that differs so much from the average Joe, when really, they’re human just like us.

  • caesar27
    December 23rd, 2012 at 10:33 am

    Very intereresting. Thanx

  • indianwriting
    December 25th, 2012 at 4:31 am

    Well said.I was amazed by the way Japanese media as well as people handled the crisis during recent times. time we took some lessons from them.

  • lauralu
    January 2nd, 2013 at 11:52 am

    So true, sometimes I just don’t watch it the news I mean, if the world blows up I will know soon enough, I love the psalms, where He says Be still and know that I am God.
    Lovely to see you back xo

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