Assignment: "The News and I"
For the most part, I find reading, watching, or listening to news enjoyable, but news consumption is something I am rarely able to fit in my day. I can't honestly say that I don't have the time to read a newspaper or watch T.V., and it's not that I don't stay current with events in our country and from around the world, but I haven't found a news format that fits my needs. While I do not utilize any particular news sources on a regular basis, I do prefer some formats over other ones available.
By far, my favorite news source is radio, specifically, National Public Radio. I find that I always feel informed, and even entertained, by the programming on NPR. Morning Edition is always what I view hard news should be, concise, direct, and unbiased. All Things Considered is always engaging, and I feel that I always take something away after listening to the show. NPR was the first news source that got me interested in news, and I am rarely disappointed with the range or the depth of their coverage. However, the aspects I like about NPR news radio are negated by having to listen to any amount of Jazz or mind-numbingly bland Adult Alternative from the local member stations.
Television is always more convenient than radio, but it always leaves something to be desired. I find that the 24-hour news channels often focus on a story barely worth mentioning, and spend hours covering it (similar to the comic strip we viewed for the class, A Famous Person Has Died by John Campbell). There are also very few news programs that attempt to be balanced or unbiased, such as The Rachel Maddow Show, Hannity, Lou Dobbs Tonight, The Daily Show with John Stewart, and Real Time with Bill Maher. While these shows are often entertaining, and can even offer in-depth coverage of the news, programs available often wantonly blur the lines between opinions and facts.
While I like the idea of print news, I don't particularly like reading newspapers or online news sources. I feel that the content in the local papers is somewhat lacking, that the articles are longer than necessary, and there is too much bias presented in the opinion sections. News sites are often confusing, with old and new news mixed together, and it can be hard to read on a computer screen for periods longer than a few minutes. Online news can also be extremely biased, such as the Drudge Report or The Huffington Post, and it is often easier to find opinion than credible news sources.