Mark Twain once said, “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.” I’m sure many of you have your own opinions of the media, especially after the recent hurricane and presidential election. I know some of you hate the media, and probably for good reasons.
I work for a local news station. I take a lot of pride in what I do. Working in news is a stressful job. Breaking news is chaotic. Covering so many crimes, political scandals, and natural disasters can be depressing. My mild mannered personality sometimes degenerates into screaming and cursing, and sometimes I make mistakes. But I know what I do matters to the community I serve.
The public needs information, whether to help them decide who to vote for, what roads to avoid while driving to work, or how to prepare for monstrous hurricanes. Even if a disaster is halfway around the world, we’re better off knowing about it–if only so we can donate money to the Red Cross or try to help in other ways.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t believe the media is without its faults. Some reporters are biased. Some reporters don’t even know they’re biased. Sometimes reporters are so overworked and tired they don’t realize they’ve made a mistake. We’re only human. All I’m saying is that the media has an important role in society, and most of us take that responsibility seriously and try our best to report the news fairly and honestly.
So what do you think of the media?
Disclaimer: I have been asked to tell you that the views expressed on my blog are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer. I have also chosen not to identify which TV station I work for. The whole of the Tomorrow News Network series is based on my own experiences in the news business, so I’m sure you can imagine why a little secrecy is appropriate.