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Twitter and Journalism


I don’t listen to NPR any more. Unless it’s Garrison Keeler or This American Life.
There is such thing as “news” for sure, and we need that information. As large as this nation is, we need an objective account of what happens, so we can evaluate the status of our culture and find our place within it. I stopped listening to NPR the day the reporters personal feelings became part of the “report”.
Every news report is colored with the opinion of the writer, and that is not okay. The number one reason that’s not okay is that our papers and news outlets are all owned by massive corporations who have an interest in shaping public thought and opinion. A journalist with dissenting opinion is not going to be published, so what are we really reading? Hand chosen distractions meant to reach us emotionally in order to undermine our intelligence.
Unfortunately this morning I found myself reading our own syndicated paper, The Citizen Times. My business was mentioned in an article, along with the whereabouts of my home, which is infuriating to say the least.
Even that, though, didn’t get me writing. It was the article on the next page by Froma Harrop titled “Is Ferguson a social media victim?”. With her opportunity to speak, Froma chooses to “explain” the inner workings of twitter, criticizing the varied viewpoints and perhaps god forbid unrealistic broadcast of the events that were happening there.
Big Surprise! A newspaper owned and syndicated by USA Today published a story about keeping your mouth shut and letting only the established and pre-approved media chose what is “trending” and relaying the “truth” of the situation- as if there is one undeniable “capital T” truth.
Guess what, this concept of absolute truth is what allowed for the crusades, slavery, the holocaust and many many many more nameless tragedies not covered by USA Today or any other established media presence.
There is no truth absolutely. We are all alive to the same degree and are therefor entitled to our perspectives. Twitter and Instagram are great sources of news painting a much more realistic picture but still requiring discernment. Watching or listening to the news should ALWAYS include discernment! Trust each other, question everything, skip the “news” and find out what’s going on in your neighborhood and do something about it, because syndicated columns don’t apply to everyone.

 

I love you SO MUCH

-Bethany

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