“Broadcasting isn’t the same as connecting. Broadcasting can create awareness. But connecting people can create engagement and change.” – Jason Goldman
News isn’t news anymore. It isn’t about informing people about what is happening. It is about stories and how those stories impact and influence us. To be completely honest, I am extremely disconnected to the world around me, as much as I feel connected.
Because of how the internet works, we are connected within our small niche circles. We have strong communities based around specific commonalities. I will know about every new restaurant opening in the St. Louis area but I have zero idea what is happening around the world. I am simply searching for a connection with my community, not a community that feels extremely distant. Others may feel differently, my mom for example, is extremely involved in politics. She follows the news constantly. It is within her circle to do so and she feels connected to the politicians she likes, and connected to those who also dislike the politicians she doesn’t like. We are people made for community and operate out of a desire for that community. Our world has been moved digitally and we consume information now based on our desire to be connected to our communities.
We are searching for deeper connection instead of connecting with our immediate neighbors. We are interested in people and stories we can feel. The way news has been communicated in the past is through information. Just giving facts after facts and little heart. The news is spits and spits and spits out information. They do not give a full well rounded story with solutions.
There is some innovative news site going about informing people different. RYOT.org is a website geared to helping people. The news is constantly filled with sad situations leaving people hopeless. RYOT offers a solution. Every one of their news stories is paired with a non-profit organization that is directly working to solve the issue. They provide ways to give your time, money and effort to help solve the problem, not just report not he problem. RYOT is an example of people working to take the news one step further.
My generation communicates on a level beyond information. We look for purpose in things. Even our jobs have to have meaning and heart behind them. It has translated to the news. I am not sure if it is just our stage of life or if it will be a lasting change. But the news is not received well unless they are given an option to work for a meaningful solution. We will not just accept the status quo and listen to what is happening. We would rather not care. But if we can do something to bring about change, we will feel more driven to care and help provide a solution.
In all honesty, I am horrible at following the news. Growing up it was spoon fed for me by my mother who reads and watches the news constantly. I would come home from school and it would be on the tv and radio simultaneously. I could be that I am burnt out from it, but I think my generation also struggles to care about things that don’t directly effect them. Unless they are moved by a story or are connected to it in some way. It is crucial to move people when telling the news, to give them more, or else it will pass through one ear and out the other.