Wednesday, June 15, 2005


To take a break from the Jury Duty saga--

Holy crap, is TV news ever intolerable. Every now and then, I turn it on just for the novelty of getting news from the least efficient, least informative news format available. They spend hours on horribly boring stories, from Michael Jackson to the girl in Aruba. You can’t switch stories to something interesting or relevant, you’re stuck watching it for the long haul as you suffer through anchors recycling repetitive information and fumbling through slow, pointless interviews with people who don’t know anything and are making up everything they say.

Media commentators refer to young people getting their news from the Daily Show as if that’s a bad thing, but have you ever compared the importance of the stories and the relevance of the news commentary on the Daily Show with an actual news program? John Stewart’s show is far and away the more substantial. People may watch it because it’s entertaining, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re are also watching it because they are thirsty for real news. You can watch CNN or Fox News for twenty-four hours straight and you’ll probably hear them cover a maximum of two or three trivial stories, at excruciating length. And they wonder why no one watches TV news. The question isn’t why aren’t people watching. It’s, why would anyone want to?

TV news is good for only one thing: breaking news. And even then, it’s only good briefly before it’s nauseating again. If a space shuttle has just blown up or something, you can turn on the TV and find out everything anyone knows in a few minutes, along with the latest footage. If you watch any longer, you’ll see the footage and the information repeated ad nauseum.

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