Media Has the Power to Find and Report On What’s Positive
It’s a beautiful sunny Sunday here in Raleigh and as I do each morning, I brewed a pot of coffee, checked email and my Facebook accounts, Tweeted (posted on Twitter) a couple of times, and then began to scan the news headlines on Google News, which as it turns out, was very depressing! While I realize that news reporting tends to weigh heavily on that which is or as the old saying goes, “What bleeds, leads,” still, for some reason today’s headlines really screamed at me:
“Murder of 5 Children Shocks Washington Trailer Park” (AP)
“Gunman Kills 3 Pittsburg Officers in Shootout” (AP)
“Globe Says it May Be Forced to Close” (Bizjournals.com)
And those were just the American headlines. The International ones weren’t faring much better.
“Sri Lankan Army ‘kills 420 Tamil Tigers’ in Three-Day Offensive” (Times)
“Ice Bridge Ruptures in Antarctic” (BBC)
What did I say? Depressing, huh? The first three stories about the shootings grab ya. They do. As much as you don’t want to admit it, the first thought that comes to mind is, “What is this world coming to?” and you want to ask that tomorrow morning as you’re standing around the watercooler (or the coffee maker) at the office, don’t you?
I’ll admit, it’s the first thought that came to my mind as well and I almost began writing today’s post based on that…but then I thought twice about it. Why give in to the negativity when it just breeds more negativity? I have the chance to influence others with some positive thoughts and that’s exactly what I intend to do. I hope.
So, let’s go back to that Google News page again and see if we can find some positive stories:
“Metallica, Run DMC Inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame” (Entertainment Weekly)
“Yankees Put On Display of Power at New Stadium” (New York Times)
OK, so I didn’t find anything detailing that a cure for Cancer was just discovered or that “So and So” won the Nobel Peace Prize or about a little boy saving his sister’s life after nearly falling into a raging river. But, what I did find was three stories positively plucked out from the nasty headlines they were buried under. Sure they’re all sports or entertainment news but at least they’re positive, right?
Outside of UNCONN fans everywhere, who can’t find some joy in a Michigan Spartans basketball team making it to the final dance?
While I’m not a big Metallica or Run DMC fan, the mere fact that they have finally been recognized by their peers for their contributions to the music/entertainment industry, that’s pretty cool. We all want that – recognition. Don’t we?
And while I’m so not a Yankees fan (born and bred Sox – Red Sox – fan so I’m usually shouting “Curse those da** Yankees!”), hey, they opened the season to a massive crowd in a brand new stadium and yes, I realize the stadium was really NOT necessary but that’s not the point. There was a celebration to be had and for their fans, they had it!
I’m not trying to belittle the severity of the other headlines by any means. I, like many (I suspect), am just tired of all the negative news. Can’t somebody somewhere provide something more positive, something to look forward to? I don’t care if it’s a reporter, blogger, or citizen journalist. I know the negative stuff is news. Sure. But, let’s not focus so much on that. Rather, let’s shake things up a bit and focus on the positive instead. I mean, really. What harm will that do?
Additional headlines I have been reading the last couple of days relate to the demise of the media industry, specifically the news media. Heck, I’m a product of it myself. I ask this – have any of those head honchos out there even thought to focus on the positive and what good that might actually do? Maybe the reason there is such a decline isn’t so much the fact that people are getting their news through other means (especially the internet) but rather, it’s simply because people are tired of reading the bad stuff.
NBC 17, a subsidiary of Media General, is one of a very select few media stations in the country that has flipped its model so much so that it even created a website to assist in those efforts, one where not only does it aggregate news and information from credible news sources but it empowers the communities it serves to share their own, especially the POSITIVE news. MyNC.com is the new wave, the future of media. It has already proved it’s mark in this market and I believe will continue to do so. And in the interest of full disclosure, I was once a member of the MyNC.com team too. Still, that should not matter because any individual that dives into the site should see it’s full potential easily, learn from it, and for those community members out there, utilize it.
The way I see it, if news media would just flip its model to highlight what is positive in this country (or beyond) rather than concentrating on the negative, maybe just maybe we’ll all see things begin to change for the good, including for themselves, which would save jobs and boost the economy too. Media has an influence. It does. Be a positive one. You have that power. Use it!
That goes along with us too. We have the power to breed positivity, to look for the good amongst the bad, and to make a difference. We have a choice in everything we do. Let’s all choose the right path instead of the wrong one.
So, back to my original thought process, when you go to read your Sunday paper (some people still do that) or check your favorite websites for the latest news or hit up your RSS Reader, look for the positive. Glance at the negative if you must but look for the positive. You’ll be amazed at what kind of outlook you will get if you let the good snuff out the bad.
Make it a POSITIVE and productive day, Everyone!