Why Not Be All A “Twitter” About The News?

Trevor Smith on what we’re discussing in Intro to Mass Communication–

If you tune into the news on the T.V. today, most likely you’ll find yourself watching either a spat between celebrity anchors, or a reporter who is out the field and is reporting information that isn’t relevant to the actual situation.

News today has somehow lost the quality of communication that it once had. We used to watch the news and be able to find out not only what is happening in our country, but also in other countries. In the 1960s, an entire generation of reporters was able to communicate information without the use of social networking.  Yet today, news broadcasts will use social networking to obtain visuals from the public. This method, which is also marketed as “listening to the viewers,” is not only cheaper in costs to the station reporting, but also allows for anyone to become a reporter. However, the information acquired in these situations is not always accurate. For instance, some of the pictures that are sent to news stations are digitally altered, and therefore less accurate.

In addition to the lack of quality in the information, anchors today are usually hired because they are visually appealing and express themselves well, but one aspect of being a reporter falls short, and that is being able to convey the information that is being presented clearly. If one was to tune into a special event on T.V. you would probably be able to find a reporter who uses his hands a lot and conducts himself very energetically, but would you be able to figure out certain details about the event? Such information is usually an afterthought and stands behind the visuals of the event. Often, a reporter who can visually paint a picture in your head is more effective in conveying the information.

 Ironically, the type of reporting that gives you a mental image of what is happening was used more in a generation that didn’t have the technologies that we have today. Sure the news today is much more complex than in the past, but on a basic level, the reporter should still be able to convey the basic information of what needs to be reported.

Perhaps the possible reason for the lack of quality in the news is that we are generally allowing ourselves to take shortcuts just for the sake of agreement, instead of being informative and reporting what needs to be. So do reporters tend not to report what is actually happening because doing so might cause a negative effect? If this is true, then it’s truly a shame, because in reality, finding the ways that we disagree is but a journey into better insight. Though it seems that today we have lost our way so many times during that journey, that we don’t even attempt it anymore.

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