Local Heart, Global Soul

July 13, 2009

Michael Jackson: disproportionate amount of space in the News?

Filed under: LIFE — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , , ,

OK, could someone please explain just what IS it about Michael Jackson and the disproportionate amount of space his life and death are occupying in the news?

I’m not a journalist but I think that people who write for a living, should be perfectly capable of researching a topic, (any topic that is truly worth spending your readers time and brain cells on) that interests them, that hopefully interests other people, and writing a well balanced, factual article that entertains, enlightens, encourages, and producing a piece of work that people will take pleasure in reading.

No, I’m not talking about what colour the bikini was of some “who-was-that-again-?celebrity” was wearing or if some supposed “star” has gained the tiniest bit of weight…

I like to log onto News at various on-line sites .. big ones, well known ones and it’s been driving me crazy to see that three out of the top five headline stories on the main pages of their websites are all Michael Jackson stories…

… err, don’t get me wrong, I have nothing personal against the man, but was there really so little other news in this small but massively diverse world over the last week or so that this coverage was the only thing on offer?

Worse still, each of the stories was pretty much a rehash of the same story on each of the other news providers. Each asked exactly the same questions, and there was a great deal of “ fleshing out the text” by saying the same thing in ten different ways, and meanwhile my reaction in reading this drivel was far from taking pleasure in being entertaining, enlightened, or enjoyment.. instead I became steadily more annoyed that I’m being treated as an intellectual dimwit and that major news sites are gaining brownie points and kudos  for the hit counter going crazy.

Why did I even click on the Micheal Jackson headlines if I wasn’t interested in the story? Well, probably because human beings interest me, I grew up with his music, and because I had already read the rest of the slim pickings of real news on offer on those days and I lived in hope that I would find something refreshingly different, in depth, well written which would tell me more than the bland meaningless  celebratory gossip.

Journalists appear to have become very lazy indeed.. ..I’m taking a maybe not so wild guess that they read the headlines of a news site from somewhere around the world in an earlier timezone, then copy someone else’s article but re-word the paragraphs enough to avoid plagiarism accusations.

The “ thinness” of these articles then gets progressively spread around the world under the guise of “ new or breaking News” and the journalists perpetrating it get well paid for actually doing very little.

Come on… I just want proper research and how hard can it be? The lives of well known people are incredibly easy to document.. and the nasty truth is very simple indeed: we are all destined to slip off this mortal coil one day.

Any journalist worth the name should be able to compile a brilliant, in depth, articulate article on really important people who have actually contributed something lasting and decent to the world that would do the individual in question the justice that they deserve. Hey, these journalists could even work on this whilst the person was alive.. compile some really interesting anecdotes, facts and human insight into what makes these people into a changers of nations, workhorses for humanity, amazing philanthropists, or outstanding people due hard work, real talent and not media hype.

How hard would it then to update the last paragraph(s) to bring events up to date for quick publication?

Whilst the news of someones demise, prematurely or not, is never news actually I wish for, it is a fact of life and I think that people who worked hard for the sake of other human beings and who’s lives we should be celebrating for these reasons, deserve more respect and thought  than lazy journalists more focused on the fluff of life often give them.

Seriously Journalists…. why not give real journalism a go?

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