Monday, August 18, 2008

Flee, Flee, The Hurricane!

As readers of this blog will know, I am not a big fan of the main stream news media.  They are obsessed with sensationalism rather than reporting facts.  I hate to generalize but I think that applies to 99% of them.

Tropical Storm Fay is a perfect example of this.  The media has been announcing how we are all going to die because of the horrible hurricane that is on its way.  The frenzy was so ridiculous that one of the guys I work with who is new to Florida wasn't going to come in today because of the hurricane.  The storm isn't going to hit till tomorrow night or even Wednesday morning, so why stay home today?  People in the apartment building where he lives were actually preparing to evacuate and that was on Sunday.  That is hysteria created by the news media.

The truth about Fay is that there is a 5% chance it will become a hurricane and it's not even going to hit us - it's going to reach land over a hundred miles away.  I don't think that warrants evacuation.

Anyway, it's just another example of the media and their obsession with sensationalism.  The problem with this "news as entertainment" mindset is that it is "crying wolf".  People could become desensitized to real important news and therefore ignore a real crisis.  Next time we get a "killer hurricane" maybe it really will be another Katrina and people will pay no attention to the news because they are so used to the sensationalism.

I just wish the people who put out this crap that passes for news would realize their true responsibilities to accurately inform people so they can make sane choices.  But as long as the news media is governed by how many eyeballs they can attract for their advertisers, that is just not going to happen.

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