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Old 03-31-2015, 04:58 PM   #21
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I think it's sad when people are driven to give up news. I can understand why they do so, but I personally take it as a challenge to stay fairly well informed.

I gravitate toward conservative sources, but try to spice it up with a little from the other side. I certainly don't expect news from any source to be "unbiased". Frankly I don't believe it ever was.

I still read the local morning paper with breakfast. We're in a decent market - being a state capital helps and there is some balance because while the state trends slightly Republican, the city is Democrat.

I used to read the WSJ every day at lunchtime. I still enjoy reading it sometimes, but there's just too much to keep up with and I'd find myself piling them up to read later. Of course I never did, so I decided to save the subscription cost. Sad but true.

We watch a little local news too. Honestly, the weather report is the main attraction, but we watch about 15 minutes of one station's six o'clock news (we turn it off when the sports comes on - not my thing) and a few minutes of another station's 10 o'clock news as we fall asleep. TiVo helps skip the local ads ;-)

Once or twice a week I like watching a national news report to see what the media thinks is important - I've been watching Bret Baier's Special Report lately and I think it's a pretty decent news program.

On the radio I like to dip into NPR's morning edition. There's some interesting stories, but after listening for a few days I usually get mad at the liberal slant (mostly their unstated assumptions) and turn them off for awhile. I also liked the The Wall Street Journal This Morning. It was kind of a quick survey of the newspaper's material. Recently it's no longer part of the WSJ (called "This Morning: America's First News") but seems to be about the same. We'll see how it develops.

And of course there is the internet - a vast expanse of 98% garbage, but lots of opportunity to drill into areas I'm interested in and also get international perspectives. I love that I can read news from so many different countries, though I do focus on the anglosphere since I only speak english. It helps keep going back to news sites on a regular basis so you can learn their biases.

And finally, I can't imagine getting news from a social network. It helps that I don't have a Facebook account. I always thought it was daft and am (probably unreasonably) proud to never have had a real Facebook account.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:04 PM   #22
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It's still possible to find thoughtful analysis, but one has to look for it.

As far as the "OMG, look at this" crap on Facebook, I ruthlessly hide it, and it has made the experience somewhat more pleasurable.
+10

I was looking at the feed today. And it's really just the stuff I care about - all the local nature happenings and sightings of bugs and birds by friends. Very tailored! Which was the whole point.

I can't say there is stuff I haven't missed. If I want to know what someone has been up to I go to their page.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:09 PM   #23
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I think it's sad when people are driven to give up news. I can understand why they do so, but I personally take it as a challenge to stay fairly well informed.
But that's the problem. Broadcast news today does not inform. Once upon a time it really did. You have to go out and seek the news now, not expect to have it presented to you. I don't mind taking a more active role and running down the "real" story for items of interest.

It's quite a relief to cut out all that noise. Just as much relief as avoiding commercials.

We stopped receiving newspapers well over a decade ago. My husband occasionally quickly glances at the local paper online.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:11 PM   #24
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I rarely watch TV news (or any TV for that matter) just because of the incessant ads. But I do subscribe to the local paper because they do make an effort to report the local stuff and keep a more optimistic view of things. They'll have a couple of AP articles but the local stuff dominates unless it's something like 9/11.

But I only subscribe in six-month increments. I think they're on their last legs but I've thought that for the last 12 years, They nearly constantly have positions open which says they don't pay enough or it's a lousy place to work, or both.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:16 PM   #25
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I never watch the news and yet always seem to be aware of what major event is going on around the world. Once a day, I quickly scan the titles on the front page of a few major world newspapers and done! Do I really need to know all the gory details about that aircraft that crashed in the French Alps? No. A skillful writer could sum up everything I need to know about this crash in a single paragraph, if only sticking to facts instead of going on and on about rumors, opinions, speculations, etc...

Sure, I won't be able to tell you what the Kardashians are up to, but the fact that I am expected to know that just shows how much of today's news is just stupid fluff.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:22 PM   #26
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Sure, I won't be able to tell you what the Kardashians are up to, but the fact that I am expected to know that just shows how much of today's news is just stupid fluff.
The first time I heard of them my thought was "Who are the Kardashians and why should I care what they're up to?" No one has yet given me an answer.

But maybe I'm just weird.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:34 PM   #27
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We never watch TV news, subscribe to the Sunday paper mostly because our kids want to read the comics, and avoid all the online "news." Life is a lot less stressful. My dad just cannot fathom why I don't want to stay more "informed."
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:35 PM   #28
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IMHO news anchors are grossly overpaid for reading drivel off the the teleprompter. Ditto for grossly overpaid weather blather bloviators.

It has been many many years that I actually watched a news or weather program. It was already annoying then.
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Old 03-31-2015, 05:51 PM   #29
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Hey I agree that most of the new programs out there are annoying and that life can be a lot less stressful by ignoring "the news", but...

I actually think it's important to keep informed - at least to a certain level - as a citizen in a democratic republic. Ultimately, our form of government doesn't work when people tune out and stop paying attention en masse.

If you don't want to vote, well OK, you're allowed not to vote, and I guess my vote is worth a teeny but more. But I still think it's sad.
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Old 03-31-2015, 06:56 PM   #30
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Giving up on partisan and major network "news" doesn't mean ignoring the news or becoming uninformed. I'd argue those who get a steady diet from those sources only may not be as well informed as they might think. You need only look at the results of many of the never ending polls to see how clueless many participants are, occasionally answers within a poll are even contradictory. It doesn't help that desperate news pollsters are often asking for opinions before anyone really knows much about a given event.

There are plenty of good sources online, magazines, newspapers and/or other TV networks like PBS...
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:01 PM   #31
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Giving up on partisan and major network "news" doesn't mean we're uninformed, I'd argue those who get a steady diet from those sources only may not be as well informed as they might think. There are plenty of good sources online, magazines, newspapers and/or other TV networks like PBS...
I, too, like PBS (and NPR). But I would not say they are non-partisan, at all.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:01 PM   #32
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Much of what passes for news is content developed by entertainment companies to pander to affinity groups targeted by marketing for the benefit of advertisers.

The stuff about "keeping you informed" is just part of the soft sell to the marks.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:07 PM   #33
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I, too, like PBS (and NPR). But I would not say they are non-partisan, at all.
I don't listen to NPR for that reason. The Newshour is less partisan. And Frontline, Charlie Rose and a few others at least provide many POV's.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:09 PM   #34
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Giving up on partisan and major network "news" doesn't mean ignoring the news or becoming uninformed. I'd argue those who get a steady diet from those sources only may not be as well informed as they might think. You need only look at the results of many of the never ending polls to see how clueless many participants are, occasionally answers within a poll are even contradictory. It doesn't help that desperate news pollsters are often asking for opinions before anyone really knows much about a given event.

There are plenty of good sources online, magazines, newspapers and/or other TV networks like PBS...

+1. I am an active voter and care a lot about local issues. That said, I find that a handy shortcut that covers 99% of all situations today in the US is to assume that all politicians are criminals, have the morals of an alley cat with a meth habit, have been bought and paid for so many times that they put the ladies of negotiable virtue to shame, and are out to take your freedom and money. The exceptions are so rare that it does not matter.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:35 PM   #35
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I think it's sad when people are driven to give up news. I can understand why they do so, but I personally take it as a challenge to stay fairly well informed.
Being well informed and watching/reading/listening to the local news or CNN are hardly the same thing. News magazines are now much thinner and filled with ads. Ditto our local paper. I don't want to waste trees so I do not subscribe to a newspaper.

Knowing what events some news organization thinks will suck people in the most and knowing things that are important are entirely different things. I think our local news feed should have information about what is going on in our city council and our state legislature and governor's office. What bills are being debated in Congress and who introduced them? Nope, instead they showed the President slipping on a step getting off Air Force One.

When I was in college and medical school, I didn't have a TV and I wasn't even listening to the radio. A friend told me about it. I was too busy studying, exercising, and enjoying my life with my friends to regularly pay attention to the news. The economy wasn't so great.

On the other hand, I was getting myself really informed about things that mattered to me, that would make me a good physician. I had the choice of sitting with the other grad students in the grad student dorm common room watching TV, or running 3 miles or swimming a mile during my non-studying time. Which was the better choice?

As long as news is sold as entertainment, I may as well stay away from the entertainment, excuse me, news feeds.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:42 PM   #36
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Hey I agree that most of the new programs out there are annoying and that life can be a lot less stressful by ignoring "the news", but...

I actually think it's important to keep informed - at least to a certain level - as a citizen in a democratic republic. Ultimately, our form of government doesn't work when people tune out and stop paying attention en masse.

If you don't want to vote, well OK, you're allowed not to vote, and I guess my vote is worth a teeny but more. But I still think it's sad.
I quit watching the news because it wasn't informing me well enough. This has nothing to do with staying informed or being an active informed voter.
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Old 03-31-2015, 08:15 PM   #37
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Being well informed and watching/reading/listening to the local news or CNN are hardly the same thing.
+1 I just checked out CNN.com. It is full of "informative" stories about LeBron James, Mike Tyson, the new Daily Show host, traffic jams in Istanbul, Coyotes on NYC roof tops, how to turn your kid into a lush, and how a bunch of people in a crashing airplane became scared out of their mind in the last moment of their life (and CNN is unapologetically making mucho dinero off of this tragedy, milking it for all it's worth). Wow, I feel more informed already.
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Today's News "Reporting"
Old 03-31-2015, 08:21 PM   #38
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Today's News "Reporting"

I don't mind occasionally watching biased news, provided it is spun the way I want to hear it. Im getting a bit old and grumpy and hate biased headlines in newspaper. Such as a recent headline.....Employee shoots and kills customer at store.... After reading article it clearly should have been.... Employee saves his life by shooting a drunk customer who pulled a gun on him.


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Old 03-31-2015, 11:30 PM   #39
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+1 I just checked out CNN.com. It is full of "informative" stories about LeBron James, Mike Tyson, the new Daily Show host, traffic jams in Istanbul, Coyotes on NYC roof tops, how to turn your kid into a lush, and how a bunch of people in a crashing airplane became scared out of their mind in the last moment of their life (and CNN is unapologetically making mucho dinero off of this tragedy, milking it for all it's worth). Wow, I feel more informed already.
Exactly. This is entertainment (well, to some, not me) and not news. While actively ignoring the common news sources, I don't feel any less informed than before. And as for voting, the news has nothing to do with choosing a candidate.

When it comes time to vote, I will research the candidates (as best as I can) and make my decision. I don't need the editorial board of my local paper make that decision for me. And certainly not the talking heads of the news networks.

Sent from my mobile device so please excuse grammatical errors.
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Old 04-01-2015, 05:23 AM   #40
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There is a word to describe what's presented on CNN and its ilk: "Infotainment." Programming is economics-driven and based on a shrewd understanding of human psychology: What will keep 'em watching long enough to see the ads?

Most people want to be entertained. Most people like to see water-skiing dogs, little kids being brave in the hospital, goofy wedding ceremonies, and the president slipping on the airplane steps. People also want the serious stories, but they prefer them with lots of footage of yelling and shoving, or being shouted-up by circus barkers a la Wolf Blitzer (Wolf: "Do you thank the Lord you didn't die in that tornado?" Woman: "Well, actually, I'm an atheist").

If the stories were presented in a serious way, the viewers would become bored, and no one would stick around long enough to see the ads.

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