Thursday, May 12, 2005

Reporting the news or reporting gossip?

In my home our main source of news is the internet. Increasingly I have noticed the content of front page (lead) stories are more gossip and less serious news, as if the news media is more interested in entertaining the public rather than informing the public.

Take the "Runaway Bride" story, for example. At first, when she was feared kidnapped and was subsequently found out to have lied about her abduction, the front page was the proper venue for her story. But since then the news outlets have been too interested in giving me the latest "dish" on the story rather than keeping their focus on serious issues of importance. It is as if the reporter is leaning out of my computer screen, whispering in my ear, "You will never believe what I just heard...".

I don't need to know how her fiance feels about the incident, what her pastor has to say, her criminal and mental background and who mentored her as a young woman. None of this is my business, but because the news outlets continue to spill out her story, this information is public knowledge!

Admittedly, the "Runaway Bride" made a very poor decision in the way she handled her problem, but I think we should give this woman's private life back and quit peering through the curtains of her living room to get the latest scoop on her dilemma.

Websites that claim to report the news should stick to their job and leave the gossip where it belongs: in the tabloids!