Checking the Weather in Peace

What happens when fear dominates hope? Does fear attract more attention than love?

People open The Weather Channel web site to check the weather, but the weather's not all we'll get. Headlines like "Widespread Severe Outbreak" or "Elevated Tornado Risk" pop up before we even enter our zip codes. Perhaps here fear has value, perhaps it helps people prepare. Or maybe headlines like these keep us on the site long enough that we may notice the Amazon ad to the right of the screen?

People turn to the news to learn about what's happening in the world. And we have myriad outlets from which to choose: television, internet, newspapers reporting on war, crime, suicidal killers … story after story there to scare us every day. How many times do we need to hear the same story, see the same images, read the same headline written with a different twist? We don't need to seek out the news; it finds us at the gym, the airport, a cafeteria, or when we open a web browser.

Why sensationalize the evil in the world instead of reporting on the good people out there doing good things? The media wants our eyeballs, and our eyeballs stick with the negative longer than the positive. Do stories of evil acts make us feel better about ourselves by comparison? Do we change the channel away from feel good stories because they make us feel worse by comparison? What does that say about us?

What can we do to tip these scales? Can we draw attention to positivity? Can we check the weather in peace?

5 comments:

  1. Today's Weather Channel web site headline: 'Uncertainty Remains, but This Could be the Most Widespread Threat Yet'

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  2. Sometimes I stop watching the 7pm news because it is as you say all negative, and I just come back to it at the weather slot and sometimes that can be negative too ^_^

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  3. The world is filled with depressing events. There is no getting away from them.

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  4. Unfortunately, what sell are "sensational" headlines. It reminds me of herds of animals peacefully grazing until a loud noise or an alarm goes out, and then they all bunch together, quivering with alertness, staring and stomping and ready to stampede. We all bunch together around TVs and computer screens in the same sort of manner. Maybe it's how we're biologically hardwired?

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  5. I stopped watching and reading the news years ago. I figure one less negative thing in my live can't be a bad move.

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