There is News and there is News. One is informative. This is where we get some exact information such as weather predictions, traffic, some political info, and so forth. The other News is essentially negative. This news is sensationalistic, misinformation, trivia, gruesome, and reinforces what ever deep fears we have about our world. I contend that bad news, perhaps not that more frequent, is in our minds more prevalent and more effective. It certainly generates advertising revenues.
So if this bad news is really bad for a our psyche and doesn’t really help, why are people so drawn to it? Before it was via TV (is Jerry Springer still showing our underbelly?) but now it is with all the latest internet based resources. You don’t have to be told which celebrity exposed their crotch, the image is probably already on the web. Who shot, stole, raped, what company did what, what politician said this, blah blah.
It’s the waterhole. Media is our waterhole. Like any herd, we approach the waterhole and like any good waterhole are rapidly exposed to all the hidden dangers. The waterhole is our view into the forest, what are the dangers out there? And like all herds, we pay attention to the anomaly. We’re not enjoying the great colorful plumage on that little bird. we’re wary; ready for that unknown Thing that will eat us.
Unfortunately, the top level predator that will devour us, is us!