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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Death of News

News is defined as "newly received and noteworthy information." In the past, it was the responsibility of the news media to deliver that "noteworthy information" as honestly, fairly, and reliably as possible. Sadly, the advent of 24-Hour news channels (like CNN or Fox News) credibility has taken a backseat to ratings.

Take for example the crapstorm KTVU in San Francisco has gotten themselves into. While covering the recent crash of an Asiana Airlines plane KTVU asked someone from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) for the names of the pilots. Obviously without verifying any of the names, they reported the pilots names were:

Sum Ting Wong
Wi Tu Lo
Bang Ding Ow
Ho Lee Fuk

If you don't understand the problem, say those names out loud. Go ahead... I'll wait. Yea, somebody who calls themselves a reporter actually believed those were real names! The even sadder part is that they obviously did NOT fact check themselves and put them on the air. Asiana Airlines is now SUING the station for slander and said they insulted not only the company but Asians in general.

I blame the race for ratings. News stations do whatever it takes nowadays to be the FIRST to get the story out, not the BEST. The past 3 presidential elections have been "called" prematurely by news stations which were WRONG, during the Boston Marathon bombings 3 different INNOCENT PEOPLE were blasted on national news and accused as suspects with no evidence other than speculation, hell the whole nation gasped when the news took a Twitter post about an attack on the White House too seriously.

I've said it quite frequently lately but don't believe everything you hear on "the news" anymore. Don't blindly believe what they report until they start proving they have some credibility again. Stay informed and remember what Rage Against The Machine told us in the 90s, "If ignorance is bliss, then wipe the smile off my face."

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