Satellite News Network Editor – Space Kidette
I have long been a news junkie. It was a habit encouraged by my parents who believed it was important to stay abreast of what was happening at a local, state, national and world level. They encouraged me to take it all in, extract the facts, ditch any opinions supplied and analyse those facts to determine my own position.
I would buy the morning paper on my train trip to the city and consume every single line, including obituaries and advertising, by the time I arrived at work. I was also required to take in the office AFR and Bloomberg subscriptions each morning as part of my job. At the end of the work day, I would again catch up with events outside the four walls of my Sydney office, taking in an afternoon edition if there had been significant news events during the day. I would make a point of catching up with the evening news and, as I often flew interstate a couple of times a week, I usually chose to read business news magazines.
In the recesses of my memory I remember the discussions about media ownership laws, which subsequently passed, thinking how lucky we were as a country to have such high quality, independent media.
I admired the work of the journalists, valued the service they provided, trusted what they presented. And, in short when it came to news – I loved it. I was any media outlets ideal customer – media outlets had a great big fat share of my wallet, mind and loyalty. I was a self confessed news junkie and came back many times a day for my fix.
Today, I continue to inhale news. Even more than I did before, but my political news consumption has radically changed.
I have not purchased a newspaper in years. I refuse to consume anything that any Murdoch has their little money grubbing fingers in, including pay TV, magazines and news. I have a list of Murdoch’s assets stuck on my fridge so I don’t get sucked in to making donations to his evil empire. I refuse to let my children consume Murdoch’s pre-packaged opinions and am teaching them what my parents so patiently taught me.
When it comes to news articles today, I check as to who wrote it and the media outlet they front for. I check for motherhood statements masquerading as facts and generalisations as statements of truth. I take what I am told and hold it in a state of mistrust until I conduct my own fact-checking. I do this by hunting down source documents and cross-checking it with other trusted sources. I am constantly consulting the wise minds of the handful of trusted analysts I consider myself privileged to have access to as part of my social media network. In short, I no longer trust the news or the political agendas of the people writing/broadcasting them or those publishing them.
I have little respect for any of the media outlets, but note some are better than others. I can count on one hand journalists whose work I trust. Much of what is presented today is little more than the regurgitated press releases generated by mindless back-office spin drones of the various political parties, who relentlessly push out their assigned quota of authorised speaking points.
Let’s be honest, most mainstream political news today, is little more than published SPAM.
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