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Wanted: Inspiring News

February 21, 2010

Is this “philosophy” still prevail: bad news is a good news?

Sometimes, I’m just so tired of watching or reading news in the media. So when I wake up in the morning or when I go back home from office, I prefer not to watch news channel or read newspaper.  I once noticed that the news program on TV, the whole evening news program, only filled with crime, conflict, crisis, intrique, gossip, enmity, struggle for power… As if that’s the only thing happen in this world.

Then one morning, I saw a program on TV that broadcast only for positive news from around the world. There are people from Burundi who rise from the scar of war for years. There’s an organization that help young unemployed people got job by recycling garbage. And then there are people from Senegal who replanted the damage mangrove forrest. There are also people from Seychelles who conserve 35 hectare area for magpie robin which is at the brink of extinction.

Those are not extraordinary things. However, those kind of news become an oasis amid all those so called bad news. Unfortunately, media give only little portion for such a news that generate inspiration, moved heart to extend help, or invite people to do good things. Perhaps, just in my opinion, those news are not “sell like hot cakes”.  Is it…??

5 Comments leave one →
  1. February 21, 2010 11:19 am

    You bet, I am no different than you . . . While at home at any time of day or night, I prefer National Geographic, Discovery, Sci-Fi or History . . . If none has interesting stuff to offer, I would turn to Cartoon Network in search of my favourite Richie Rich . . . This is a human side of journalists for sure, something media gatekeepers and investors always fail to fully grasp and materialise . . . Thus putting more responsibility on our shoulders to rope in colour, positive emotions and success in our work . . . Frankly, I have not very happy and successful people on desk in our newsrooms (may be yours are better ones folks) and their depression too translates in rundown of TV news bulletins or front pages of newspapers . . . Let’s keep the Hope alive!

  2. February 21, 2010 2:57 pm

    Fransisca! its not enough that we share the same birthday now you are stealing my words! I think this every day. Reading newspapers is depressing and there was a time when I could not bring myself to do it… it had a bad effect on me.

    Sadly it is part of human nature. People love reading about others misfortune and about gore, blood and guts.

    However, I do know that there are good stories, I am sure of it and I know that people like reading heart-warming pieces if they are well-written and well-researched. It is up to us to fight to get them into papers….

  3. Amanda Wilson permalink
    February 21, 2010 4:24 pm

    Hi Fransisca, It was nice to meet you at the conference and I enjoyed reading your reflections. I hope the ICFJ cross-cultural reporting project will give us some space to explore the nuances (a favorite word from the conference) of each topic…

  4. Elisa Di Benedetto permalink
    February 25, 2010 3:49 am

    You are so right Francisca!

    Journalists should really change perspective.
    Your post reminds me of a guidebook for journalists called “Peacejournalism”, by Jake Lynch and Annabel McGoldrick. Through a rethinking of news about conflict, it offers the tools and the insights to change the way the media reports wars, suggesting that a non-violent response to conflict is always possible.

    Though it was aimed at calling for an analytical approach to conflict and facing the ethical dilemmas of reporting contemporary conflicts, I find it very helpful in since conflict is considered as “a system of relations influencing many apparently diverse discourses and social interactions” and “the journalism of conflict is discernible in the way many stories are covered”.

    I like the idea of Peacejournalism: it’s quite provocative in proposing that most journalism, thinking itself objective, is actually war journalism.

  5. fransiscaromana permalink
    February 25, 2010 6:38 am

    Thanks guys, for sharing the same feeling with me…
    sometimes I just think that perhaps it’s me who’s wrong.
    I agree with you Elisa, perhaps this is a matter of how we serve the news to our readers or audiences. conflict isn’t always about blood, gunfire, and anything like that. journalists have to be able to see green in a sandtrap. then, from there, together we can make a difference…

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