When media creates the drama


I’ll admit that I over exaggerate in regular conversation, and in that context it’s a little more accepted. But if I were reporting a news story, regardless of the topic (sports, national, local), I would be sure to reign in my drama-like tendencies. But it seems that some journalists do the opposite. Not only the entertainment and gossip journalists, but sports and news journalists too.

The saying “no news is good news” is not necessarily true for media outlets. Drama and disputes appeal to viewers/readers. Plain and simple. So what’s a journalist to do when there isn’t any drama one day? They create it…and audiences soak it up.

By asking inciting and provoking questions to subjects, journalists can create a story out of nothing. For example, the Cleveland Cavaliers are 1-3, and for the last 20 minutes on Sports Center reporters have been discussing “what’s going wrong.” They brought up possible behind-the-scenes feuds and egos. But is anything really wrong? Maybe if they had a severe losing record halfway through the season, but they’ve only played 4 games. Like LeBron, and before him Aaron Rodgers said, “r-e-l-a-x.”

Even in non-sports journalism, like the news surrounding the Ebola crisis, reporters can cause a stir over, well, nothing. I understand that Ebola is a very serious, life-threatening issue, but we need to reign in the drama. If we listened to the doctors and not solely the reporters “interpreting” the doctors, we would know just how difficult it is to catch Ebola and that the chances of getting it in America are less than being struck by lightning.

The next time there’s a slow news day, journalists should embrace the downtime and not create trouble for the public and more work for themselves.