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Mister Pink

Is the news bad for you?

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Mister Pink

I grew up in a household where the news was watched religiously by one of my parents. I hated it as a child. As an adult, I found myself becoming more prone to consuming a lot of news. We would also have The Sunday Times in the house, complete with magazine supplements and culture section, which I believe was very enriching - I learned about new music, films, and seen some of the best published photography ever. I do appreciate that, growing up. But, with the advent of Google News and having a smartphone nearby at all time, and being able to tailor Google News to certain topics and sources, I found myself easily going to browse news topics, oftentimes, multiple times a day. 

 

More and more, I started to think it's mostly a waste of time. Most news doesn't affect me. And most news topics I consume fall out of my circle of influence. So why was I consuming it? Was to be in the know? Was it to keep up with conversations in the workplace? Was it understand what's going on in the world? Probably a little bit of all. But is it really that helpful? I mean, a lot of the news I would end up consuming due to headlines in related articles was really stuff that doesn't effect me at all. A car crash here. A murder there. I would get a thrill from reading about something. I'm of the opinion, it's mostly a waste of time. It's a form entertainment. It's think it's mostly a terrible way to be informed of a topic too.

 

To quote the author and businessman Rolf Dobelli for The Guardian

Quote

Out of the approximately 10,000 news stories you have read in the last 12 months, name one that – because you consumed it – allowed you to make a better decision about a serious matter affecting your life, your career or your business. The point is: the consumption of news is irrelevant to you. But people find it very difficult to recognise what's relevant. It's much easier to recognise what's new. The relevant versus the new is the fundamental battle of the current age. Media organisations want you to believe that news offers you some sort of a competitive advantage. Many fall for that. We get anxious when we're cut off from the flow of news. In reality, news consumption is a competitive disadvantage. The less news you consume, the bigger the advantage you have.

 

I'm not saying there is no purpose for news. I'm not saying there isn't value in news reporting. Some publications will do a nice long-form piece that you can dig your teeth in and learn more about a topic. But again, most of it doesn't really affect your daily decision making.  What I am saying is daily news consumption is probably as useful as watching Love Island. I'm generalising of course. 

 

Author Dobrelli makes some compelling arguments that news is bad for you. He does so in the article I linked. I understand, a lot of it is opinion, subjective, personal and it's not always based on data from studies but I still think his arguments are compelling. If you don't feel like reading the article linked above you can watch a short TED he did here. 

 

There's also some research conducted that suggest that news consumption and lead to change in mood (anxiety and sadness) and lead to catastrophizing personal worries.  The psychological impact of negative TV news bulletins: The catastrophizing of personal worries - here is an free PDF scan of the study: http://www.envisionkindness.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Johnston-and-Davey-1997-Psychological-Impact-of-Negative-TV-News.pdf

 

 

 

I'm inclined to agree with him. As a very creative person, I'm interested in how better to opimise my time. I'm studying and I'm try to develop a number of creative projects simultaneously. And news consumption is one of those things I would rather cut out and read a book instead. And that is a challenge as other ways to consume media usually take preference; I'm an avid consumer of podcasts, TV series, and tutorials for my hobbies. But news was this guilty pleasure and consumes my time. Thankfully, I've weened myself off social media, for the most part. The next part is to ween myself off news consumption. 

 

I would like to ask people here, their thoughts. More a discussion than a debate, perhaps? Do you consume a lot of news? Have you thought about your news consumption and if so, what did you think? Can you imagine your life without news? What would that look like? 

 

After watching the video or reading the article and/or study

Do you think news is bad for you? 

 

 

Edited by Mister Pink
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Raavi

Interesting topic, and something I have thought about a bit in the past as well. I consume a lot of news, from big international topics of the day to national news to local news to specialised business and legal news. To that end I also have multiple subscriptions to a variety of outlets. The reasoning as to why is really two-fold: on one hand it kind of is a necessary element of my field of expertise to keep track off the goings on around the country and the world. On the other hand I also quite simply enjoy it on a personal level, both reading what is going on and then doing deeper research myself as well as later on discussing my findings and views with others - which you could definitely call a form of entertainment.

 

As for if it is bad for me.. depends on how you look at it, it sure can be a form of procrastination but it at the same is one I feel less bad about because unlike playing wordfeud or some such on my phone I can actually use being informed to my advantage at least on some level at a later point. Even if it is for something as banal as talking with colleagues about the dismal state of the DOJ when standing around the coffee machine. So could I imagine a life without news for me personally? That's gonna be a no. Though I could reasonably read less of it whilst not compromising my being informed too much. 

 

That being said, whilst I think everyone should be as informed as possible I can also see the argument of ignorance being bliss. Though I feel like that will inevitably come with a whole host of side-effects of its own.

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ilovebender.com

I watch the news around the clock.

I've also been known to google it the news randomly throughout the day.

I hear the Labour Debate I was watching in the other room on in the background now. (when I started typing)

I didn't personally set out to watch it; the TV was already on the news and I happen to catch the Victoria Derbyshire show daily (Should probably touch that dial) I have three TVs, two medium sized sets, one hooked up to a first generation Tivo box from Virgin Media I should call for the free upgrade, and a secondary regular Virgin Box that I really should upgrade to Tivo for free as well since it started prompting me late last year with  message, and a big one hanging up high on the wall in the bedroom in a spot where it makes great for entertaining if you lift the oak table out (I like wide floor spaces if I can help it) and it turns into what I've seen in nightclubs only I've got a 60" TV doing it that's also great to laying back in bed) - connected to my Xbox One which I've been known to stream live news from YouTube and BBC iPlayer on too.

Is news bad for you? I don't think news is bad, I think politics is bad for you.

Politics is decisive , ugly, and often leads to disagreements when it'll be great if everybody just got along; I'm all for arts and poetry, music and movie making and any form of expressive art there is; I think that's good for people, not 'politics', but politics though avoidable, still matters if you believe you can, but I envy those who don't like politics have a hold on them, I imagine they're happier people.

I don't like getting political with my art if I can help it because I feel it can very quickly date the piece, and even though I've written about current events, I've done so with a heavy heart knowing it's probably going to end up looking very dated very shortly - so I don't like to mix politics and art if I can help it.

Edited by ilovebender.com

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jpm1

@ilovebender: you don't like politics, but how do you plan to govern a country. because even if you take out the scythes, and the forks soon or later you"ll have to get into politics 😉. only a far rightist didn't understood that. i'm not talking for you. just pointing out how dumb far right is

 

regarding the news. only the global far right pushes got me hooked to the news channels recently. generally i don't give a f.. of what others do. but right now it seems the world is entering a dumb period which seems to have no bottom. thus this interests me, as a French who got his country into a bloody, unfair, stupid, and totally out of justice revolution once. for me the French revolution is not only something that generated rivers of blood, but also make the French become c..t, thinking violence is a good way to go. you can see it with the recent gilets jaunes, or blockades. they want to destroy the world, they don't even know what for. typical French, go violent, then dominate, then discuss, or cry (c**ts!). and i thank God to have created the British who calmed us down when we did go too far sometimes. i'm not going to make myself some friends on that one, but i don't care

so to finally answer, i watch news but not to educate, just to witness (the world s..)

Edited by jpm1

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ilovebender.com
6 hours ago, jpm1 said:

@ilovebender: you don't like politics, but how do you plan to govern a country.

I don't.

I plan to return to my life of electric guitar and substance abuse.

I love Denmark St. It's the centre of my universe; I plan to return to having dalliances too! - but it's mostly about the guitar with me.

 

Quote

because even if you take out the scythes, and the forks soon or later you"ll have to get into politics 😉. only a far rightist didn't understood that. i'm not talking for you. just pointing out how dumb far right is

Define far right? I define far right as the BNP or the former NF... I also think UKIP became more far right given their candidates they paraded in the last European Parliament elections. I guess if you're unaware, these are UK's answer to Jean-Marie Le Pen or his daughter; I don't know a lot about French politics though I so won't take offense if you've not heard of the old NF or the BNP - but it is they who I'd deem 'far right'; not The ERG faction of the Tory Party or Donald Trump's administration.

Quote

 

regarding the news. only the global far right pushes got me hooked to the news channels recently.

You mean quote unquote "populism"?

 

Quote

generally i don't give a f..

That's a good way to be; I don't where you in France you are; Paris looks particularly political with the yellow vest movement and the strike action by refuse workers. Because of being in London, because of Brexit and Jeremy Corbyn, I've had politics dumped onto me blocking my way, so I more or less got dragged into politics lest we get ruled by the EU or Labour.

 

Quote

of what others do.

Amen.

Quote

but right now it seems the world is entering a dumb period which seems to have no bottom.

Define dumb.

 

Quote

thus this interests me, as a French who got his country into a bloody, unfair, stupid, and totally out of justice revolution once. for me the French revolution is not only something that generated rivers of blood,

River's of blood was said by the Founder of the NF party Enoch Powell in the UK back when all the Caribbean people came and he invited them over even but then they didn't go home so then he made an infamous speech called his 'Rivers of Blood Speech' and then started the NF (A laymen's understanding of history). But I believe it was him who started the NF thing with his Rivers of Blood Speech.

 

 

Quote

but also make the French become c..t,

 

Quote

 

thinking violence is a good way to go. you can see it with the recent gilets jaunes, or blockades. they want to destroy the world, they don't even know what for. typical French, go violent, then dominate, then discuss, or cry (c**ts!). and i thank God to have created the British who calmed us down when we did go too far sometimes. i'm not going to make myself some friends on that one, but i don't care

so to finally answer, i watch news but not to educate, just to witness (the world s..)

See, Napoleon and Hitler had somethings in common;

Napoleon wanted to conquer the world, Adolf Hitler wanted to conquer the world, Napoleon followed Nostradamus and thought himself an Antichrist, Adolf Hitler followed Nostradamus and thought himself an Antichrist; Napoleon gassed slaves and butchered them in Haiti, Adolf Hitler gassed more Jews in Poland and the whole Holocaust...

But France has a tomb in Paris for Napoleon and Germany try to distance themselves from Hitler.

I don't get that about France, but that's because I'm British and are of the people who put one down and helped to bring down another.

I mean, Britain's okay, I guess, I mean, it's history is pretty sh*tty in the calculated brilliance it took to annoy people the world over once upon a time, but, it's still home - it's okay, I guess, my country and all of that... but I thank God for the Americans, especially since I'm British and learned in the actual room in Philadelphia that America was born in that the American Revolution taught the British a much needed lesson in freedom when they broke away from the British Empire - if it wasn't for that to keep the British in check, the world would probably have to pay a TV license for the BBC.

 

I look at Nelson like, one of my own in that, if they had Quickfit or the AA back then, that'll be his go to; love my countrymen, but only because I too would have to use the AA or Quickfit etc. It's a pretty stupid way to identify with history I admit, but, they should advertise Quickfit by having Nelson pull the HMS Victory in for a service lol.

Edited by ilovebender.com

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Eutyphro
20 hours ago, ilovebender.com said:

See, Napoleon and Hitler had somethings in common;
Napoleon wanted to conquer the world, Adolf Hitler wanted to conquer the world, ... But France has a tomb in Paris for Napoleon and Germany try to distance themselves from Hitler.

Britain actually did conquer the world. Was the British empire like Hitler as well?
 

Quote

Napoleon followed Nostradamus and thought himself an Antichrist, Adolf Hitler followed Nostradamus and thought himself an Antichrist;

What sh*tty conspiracy website are you getting this tripe from?

As for OT reponses go, the news is a very negative influence. Because the masses are mediocre and slightly aimless they are most stimulated by negativity, and negativity is what the news provides. Often it's a massively meaningless disaster highlight reel. I plan on distancing myself from the news as much as possible and only read about current evens in weekly in depth articles. I'm sure that the reason many people are on antidepressants and suicidal is due to the way our society is hedonistic, nihilistic, and feeds people negativity round the clock. I noticed that when I lived with my parents again a few years ago, with them watching tv news around the clock, I've become much more mellow with most of the news out of my life.

Edited by Eutyphro

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ilovebender.com
8 minutes ago, Eutyphro said:

Britain actually did conquer the world. Was the British empire like Hitler as well?

Well the British Empire never thought itself to be Nostradamus' Antichrist.

Also, I don't think the Brits gassed people in confined spaces like slave ships or "showers" - That's some next level b/s. I think if we ever gassed anyone, it was some open field somewhere in France or Belgium before the international community deemed chemical warfare too bad to use and outlawed its use even for warfare; so much so the Brits' aversion to gassing people, Brits in WWII were issued their own gas masks, even children had children's gas masks; they never were gassed in the end, but you see somebody in England in WWII, they've probably got a gas mask.

Edited by ilovebender.com

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Eutyphro

What's your source for the Nostradamus nonsense? The British were at fault for many mass slaughters of occupied peoples. Gassing or not, doesn't matter. Murder is murder. The Holocaust isn't horrible because it involved gassing, but because it involved the murder of millions.

Edited by Eutyphro

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Rhoda

Please let's not turn this into UK Politics Discussion V2.

 

My view - compulsive viewing of the news can be damaging, but in a different way. I don't often watch the news in the traditional sense, but I do occasionally open news sources on my phone, maybe every other day. I believe I'm better off, because negative news almost always outweighs the good. For every wholesome story about a boy being pulled out of a well by frantic villagers, there's five dedicated to political instability, climate change, poverty, war and general misery. I'm not saying that these things aren't important, of course they are. To shut yourself off from new developments completely would be ignorant, and might contribute towards a narrow world view. Much like everything, there's a balance to strike, and it's all subjective. Some people feel altogether happier keeping their finger on the trigger, knowing everything and anything about the day. It helps them stay informed. However, people can be impressionable and might feel deflated from exposure to some of the more turbulent and violent stories. The news has always been manufactured as informative, but the more cynical might believe that outlets use the more depressing developments to distract the general public from what's "really going on". That's probably true, but this is by the by. We're talking about the news contributing towards unhappiness and eventually poor mental health. I would probably say it does, but it would depend entirely on your outlook to begin with. Don't get me wrong, it would drive anybody nuts, but only in the same way reading the newspaper would if you're not particularly well read. For my own wellbeing I tend to limit my news intake. I have a fair enough idea of what's going on, and I treat everything I see with what I'd consider to be a healthy amount of suspicion and skepticism. I'm not going around bleating "conspiracy" at everything, but I take things with a pinch of salt.

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ilovebender.com
1 hour ago, Eutyphro said:

What's your source for the Nostradamus nonsense? ...

The History Channel.

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Tyler
On 2/12/2020 at 4:08 PM, Mister Pink said:

Do you consume a lot of news? Have you thought about your news consumption and if so, what did you think? Can you imagine your life without news? What would that look like? 

 

After watching the video or reading the article and/or study

Do you think news is bad for you? 

 

First and foremost, I've been pretty active with news consumption most of my life. As much as it pains me to admit it, I used to spend what little money I made as a child buying newspapers and magazines that were sold at the store next to my grandmother's house. It's how I got into National Geographic, and it's also how I became pretty cynical about major news sources. This sort of avid consumption kept going into my teens and 20s. As of now, I confine myself to a couple of longform subscriptions like Monthly Review and the LA/London Review of books, but I end up reading a lot of current affairs through my affiliated volunteer work. Until recently, it was also a large part of my job to be well-read in foreign affairs, which is a lot less stressful to me, because I can look at most news affecting the world with a more abstract and detached lens.

 

I've thought quite a bit about whether news is worth viewing. For me, understanding and acting within the political sphere is a necessity--my interests are all in on it, so for me it's an easy answer. At the same time, I have cut my intake of most cyclical news and local news almost entirely. Like you said in your post, the constant siren of murders or whatever mysterious disease is plaguing some part of the world this week becomes more of a drain than anything. Yellow journalism has existed since before the modern age, and people will always feel a certain primal draw to those obscene, possibly morbid, probably exaggerated tales. They make the world seem less boring. They also generate and intensify feelings of fear and isolation, which is the main reason I try not to pay much mind to them. I've even stopped listening to true crime podcasts for the same reason.

 

My life without news would have to be much different. Maybe I'd be more focused on art for its own sake. Nonetheless, I don't have a problem with the way I consume media these days. I spend idle time playing piano or writing, but I also spend a lot of time looking at political news in the hopes of understanding and explaining bigger ideas and concepts to friends, families, and the people I reach out to in my work. One day, all things willing, I'll retire to a nice cabin on the coast and chop logs, watch rain fall on the rocks, and enjoy human life for what it is. For now, I'm afraid I have bought into society and politics and invested enough of my own compassion that I can't see any other way of doing it. 

 

Great topic, Pink. This is one of those things we should all examine about ourselves. Whether you are able to handle the constant intake of news is a serious thing to consider. Our media devices seem inclined to shove news into our eyes at all waking ours, and the profitability of 24-hour news makes it that much more likely that you or someone you know will read a shocking headline that you simply must share. Not everyone is at the capacity to take in that grief and misery and ambiguity and speculation without having more serious problems with their conception of the world.

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Caysle

news are programmed to get a reaction out of us, and they usually piss me off. I follow some news accounts on my main twitter, but I do not use that account often. I have an anon account that's designed much better in terms of timeline clarity. I don't watch TV as the one in my apartment is not even plugged in. so yes I don't consume much news. at the end it's about what do you want to see in the world. I feel news are inherently ugly. something off putting and evil about them trying so hard to make things look like in a certain way to people. I don't like ugly things and I'm better of without them in my life

this is the end of me philosophising for now, see you soon for a new one

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ilovebender.com
On 2/14/2020 at 5:46 PM, Eutyphro said:

What's your source for the Nostradamus nonsense? 

 

This is the History Channel's documentary on Nostradamus called The Nostradamus Effect, the pilot episode, talking about the three Antichrists Nostradamus spoke of and how both Napoleon and Hitler acted and also their belief that Nostradamus spoke about them.

I mean, to the British, Hitler and Napoleon are viewed kind of the same, only France built a monument for Napoleon and Germany try to distance themselves from Hitler! - now that's funny if you get a kick out of that sort of stuff.

UK also wasn't fond of these people either considering the wars we had and everything to put them down.

 

I wonder if History Channel's bad for you? lol

Edited by ilovebender.com

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Nico

Yeah, the news do affect me. A lot.

 

My parents are both well north of 50 and like everyone of their age, they were raised with TV. During their free time at home, if they are not sleeping, they are watching TV. My mother is particularly into the right wing media and she believes everything they say. The same right wing media that supported our previous goverment, which absolutely destroyed our economy and put us on a massive debt, with the money going to their f*cking pockets and we the normal people have to pay for it now. I used to believe what they said as well, even though I was never into it as much as my mom. I think I have developed critical thinking a bit over time.

 

Back in 2013 I started a career in Journalism, and even back then teachers warned us to not solely trust a single side of the spectrum, they told us to listen to multiple sources and draw a conclusion. I dropped that career and overall I think that chapter of my life was mostly a mistake, but it taught me a few things nontheless.

 

But back to the subject. Yeah, news f*cking suck. I don't want to sound like I support being uninformed, but these days it's hard to notice if what they are telling you is true or not. And like Eutyphro says, it's ALL negativity. And the few "positives" are usually crap information I couldn't care less about. Like the latest trendy cat/dog video on internet. Or the goals of our football players overseas. But outside of that, they just can't stop giving you the impression that this country (and our society as a whole) is going nowhere. These days they are talking about a kid who was killed by some spoiled f*ckwits who were casually rugby players, and now people are attacking everyone who likes or plays rugby. People are extremely ignorant and incredibly willing to express their uninformed and influenced opinions, and obviously they are also willing to defend them by any means. I f*cking hate my country and I want to leave. Nobody is sensible here. Some people believe in the afterlife, I want to believe there are better people somewhere else.

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spectre07

In some way attracts me when I am searching randomly something and those news comes in my feed and I wish to stop them because I don't feel good wasting a little bit of free time reading content about tragedies, murders and death with graphic content mostly online (I don't watch TV since a long time and I don't buy newspaper either) and my mind goes blank then I know those news are bad for me.

 

 

Edited by spectre07

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