Thursday, February 11, 2010

Question: The Public Interest

People have different interests -- shocking but true! The media claims they don't cover foreign news because no one cares. They also claim the public doesn't care about Democratic scandals, but that's horsh. . . What types of news topics interest you and what kind don't? Is the national debt your thing? How about financial news? China's domination of the earth? Do the details of that new trade agreement with Antigua excite you? Local crime? Pitbull eats mobile home? Do tell!!

22 comments:

ScottDS said...

I enjoy local news, not because I don't care what's happening around the world, but because it's, you know, near me! :-)

Unfortunately, and this has been true for years, very often the local news is a joke. They do serve a purpose sometimes - our local NBC station has been covering a mysterious "cancer cluster" in the middle part of my county (I'm in the southern part) but there's also a lot of "Who cares?" news.

When Jerry Seinfeld hosted SNL years ago, they did a local news parody. They nailed it when Jerry (as the anchor) said, "The president died. But the president of what? Find out tonight at 11!"

I don't completely agree with this article about local news: http://dailycaller.com/2010/01/15/confessions-of-an-anchorman/

I also enjoy tech news. Gotta keep up with the Apple/Google wars!

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I know what you mean about local news. It's interesting to keep up with local events, but talk about unprofessional!

I like a broad assortment of news, but that's really hard to find. Most the national news now only cover politics (and they do so in the most shallow of ways) or celebrity news. There's little world news left and certainly nothing with depth.

ScottDS said...

I just hate that politics, like hurricanes, has become a year-round event for the news to cover. In the local paper, some local meteorologist said hurricane seasons was their Superbowl. But we hear about it all the time, whether it's related to the stimulus package or global warming, etc.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I think it has to do with the fighting. Television news has gone ADD, and they think that people want to see constant conflict. So what could be easier than bringing in a couple of paid combatants -- one Democrat, one Republican, and letting them throw crap at each other for five minutes. It's simple, it takes no brains to produce, and they think people want it.

I personally, turn those people off -- as do more and more people that I know.

BevfromNYC said...

Why do we have to hear so much about Jennifer Anniston??

I like "discovery" news like an ancient case of brandy or whiskey was just discovered in the Arctic from the Shackleton expedition.

Writer X said...

I don't like celebrity news, especially when it's reported like it's more important than stuff that's really important like the economy, national security, the war, etc. I could care less about John Edwards' sex tape.

I do like news about current events but, unfortunately, you can't find anything in one place and have to do a lot of sifting. I also like the occasional--but rare--good, human interest story, like a local kid who organizes a car wash for a fallen officer's family. It gives me hope for the human race.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, That's always interesting. I like scientific discoveries too -- like a new planet or solving some part of the evolution question. Good stuff.


Writer X, I couldn't agree more -- I hate celebrity news. I honestly don't care that Lindsey Lohan did something stupid. In fact, I hold it against any "news" channel that tries to feed me that garbage.

I'm not so big on the human interest stories though because most of them are ridiulous filler or border on false-celebrity status (like the mom who had the million kids) -- though I do like the kind that 60 Minutes does occasionally, where they talk about people doing charity work or building schools, etc.

HamiltonsGhost said...

Lawhawk--Boxer had begun to look like the aging "wrath of God" even before this race heated up. Do you think she will fall apart when she has to face vigorous opposition in the general election?

LawHawkSF said...

Andrew: I love local news as long as it sticks to local scandal (and in San Francisco, there's plenty of that). When they get to political news, I switch to cable, since I know local political news will be single-mindedly pro-liberal and Obama-promoting. "Supervisor X denies he was caught in bed with a male wharf-rat." Now that's exciting news!

ScottDS said...

Andrew - there's a very interesting show that aired in the 90s on the CBC in Canada called The Newsroom. It's like The Office but more political, darker, more subtle, and takes place in Toronto at a news station. The news director (who is played by writer/director/creator Ken Finkleman) says human interest stories are called, "Hey, Martha!" stories because it makes you say, "Hey, Martha, a dog got stuck in a tree!"

Then the pompous know-nothing anchor adds his two cents: "But it should be noted that there's a difference between, 'Hey, Martha, a dog got stuck in a tree!' and 'Hey, Martha, it's ethnic cleansing!'"

The show leans left (whatever that means up in Canada) but there is some funny stuff. Also a couple of completely pretentious episodes where Finkleman unleashed his inner Fellini.

Just watch this short clip from the opening of the first episode.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LR32L9i8siU

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, The newsroom has always been a great place to stage a sitcom or a drama, but they usual refuse to go deep enough to create anything meaningful -- they like promoting the ideal of journalism, usually with a nasty boss, rather than the rather pathetic truth.

Thanks for the link, I'll check it out!

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I can imagine that your local news is a little more colorful than in most places.

Tam said...

The SF news is probably colorful as a rainbow...

We watch the French news a lot. It is not so much for the insight or better quality, but it is interesting to get a different perspective on world events. We mostly shake our heads and roll our eyes. Like the story that was on this morning about housing crises around the world...the reporters stated that they can't allow Europe to become like the US where so many people are losing their homes that people are living in tents on the streets. Wha???? it kind of makes sense why the world hates us so much when we see how we are portrayed in the foreign media.

AndrewPrice said...

Tam, I've seen a lot of German news as I have German relatives, and the view they are sold of America is stunningly incorrect. They think that vast numbers of Americans live in the streets, that most of us carry guns, that few of us have ever seen a doctor, and that we routinely lynch blacks.

These distortions are so ridiculous that I can only assume their governments are promoting this to cover up their own problems.

patti said...

i like me news of the weird and the newest techie stuff along with anything scientific/medical breakthroughs. i remember when i first heard of nanotechnology and was blown away. everything else i get on mah internets, courtesy of al gore of course!

AndrewPrice said...

Patti, algore has truly been a blessing to us all! ;-)

I like the tech stuff too. It's neat to see what we're becoming capable of doing!

Anonymous said...

I can't stand all the shouting they do on the news these days. I miss the old days when news was informative.

BevfromNYC said...

All Hail Algore! Creator of the internet...

The knowledge that Europeans have of this country is nothing new. When I was an exchange student years and years ago, those wacky Euros though exactly the same thing - we're lynching, homeless tent dwellers. And because I was from Texas they also added that Texans rode horses everywhere and carried six shooters.

Anonymous said...

I should also add I love Commentarama!

AndrewPrice said...

Anon, Thanks! I agree, I don't like the fighting either -- that's not news, nor is it informative.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, As an aside, when I first went to NY for college, I flew home my first Christmas and the woman next to me was visiting her daughter in LA. She'd never been West of the Hudson at that point. When she found out that I was from Colorado, she actually asked me (1) did I live on a farm and (2) do we still have an Indian problem! I will admit that I was a bit shocked.

MegaTroll said...

Andrew, That's funny. I like hard news, not soft news.

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