Ideas come from the strangest, seemingly unrelated events. It is like when shooting digital night images. People ask, “You don’t check your images on the spot?”
“No, digital is so simple and easy, storage is cheap, I don’t shoot machine gun bursts to fish for one image, so I would rather try to take a few more angles of what I think might be a good image.”
What does all this have to do with a riot in the USA, and junk food? Read on…
I have an old friend who I read his twitter feed because he is the one person I think is fighting to really do a good job with what was journalistic integrity, in a world where more and more, everyone is out for themselves, ratings, awards, and dollars.
This isn’t really the case here so much in Switzerland, where you can still get a newspaper - but the locals say, “it is changing.”
A few months ago, I wrote about the events in Ferguson, Mo. Today, I see the image that just makes me want to cry. A festive holiday banner spelling, “seasons greetings!” hung from lamp posts high above the street. Below it, a riot was happening.
what a sad image from within a great country.
I wonder if such an event would be happening with the way the media, and the political power players are using people as pawns in a game that already claimed one life, but if I were a gambling man, would wager there will be more to follow.
The sad part is, “what will change?”
The history repeating itself of rioters burning down their own towns as a mass frenzy or people get worked up with a wide range of emotions will be rationalized as “mob mentality” by psychologists, simply doesn’t work.
All it does is make for juicy headlines.
When I saw the rioters reaching Times Square and NYC, all I could think of was the Tawana Brawley case when I was younger. It was a complete mess. What has actually changed?
Tonight I received an email from a friend in Hong Kong, “mark, what is going on in Ferguson, all we get for American news is this story. Is the media creating the story?”
I had to stop and write back, “I think yes, it probably is. Earlier today I was writing about it and I had to fact check the difference between black no black murders, the society, unemployment, and white on black murders to see how far out of balance the story has gotten.” http://www.poynter.org/mediawire/266133/fact-checking-claims-about-race-after-ferguson-shooting/
While the research was nothing new, it did solidify what modern media has become in the United States.
The media has become no different than our diet choices for most in the United States. Everyone has the capability to transmit data, images, stories, and opinions from their own mind – yet, what many do is observe and transmit something that another person has written and stir up the emotional trump card that overrides facts.
I have lamented how at no other time in history does any one individual have more tools to crate than ever before with computer technologies – yet, we seem to be content with trying to copy each other and thinking it is innovation.
With the media, it saddens me that the mainstay in America used to be the newspaper. Now that those institutions are giving way to instant gratification media with moving images and television – people don’t want depth – they just want to scan the news on the internet and click a like button.
Modern media – is becoming bloated, yet provides junk food quality news.
Modern America – is becoming bloated, ingesting cheap junk food with that news.
Emotions and ratings seeming to trump details called "facts."
It is easy to eat a great deal of food in America very inexpensively. You can gorge on the two primary food groups of the developed society in the sugar and lard groups. In a sense the damage it does is a bit like smoking – it takes time to put on the pounds, stop moving more and creating a nation that is overweight.
Today’s media is heading in the same direction. You can get as much inexpensive journalism to fit whatever point of view or opinion you wish. Fact checking is not really necessary, as the media makes more money simply following the trend to broadcast the latest trend from the fringe that will get normal people to act shocked.
We are a junk News nation. It seems to go hand in hand with also being more and more a junk food nation.
The people that understand how to operate the news franchises are very smart people. Each is playing a game pitting race, creed, color, and political, religious, sexual view against each other.
They don’t seem to ever go one step further and say, “We are all humans. Why don’t we just look at the planet like that?"
I think the founding fathers even wrote, “All men are created equal.”
The United States is one of the better places on the planet to live. You do have freedoms. What bothers me is that in the last 20-30 years, a shift has happened inside the country. The “image” that was fed to the people, is not the reality that exists.
The good news is that it can change the moment everyone stops looking at the other for solutions, and they look at themselves as the solution. Sans race, creed, color, religion, etc.
If we don’t, just close your eyes for a moment and imagine perhaps 10 or 20 years, at the most 40 years from now, when machines can take, generate, and create any skew they wish and tell any story they wish.
Do you really want to live in a society that gets programmed and dumbed down to that level?