Saturday, May 21, 2005

Newsworthy? I Think Not

At first glance, one might think something deemed newsworthy as something that would make it to a newcast or newspaper and would have worth. Worth kind of conjures up value to me. So, valuable news. Perhaps, but I certainly wouldn't describe the crap that Newsweek published recently that, either directly or indirectly (that's still up for discussion) brought about the deaths of 16 people. How this publication, owned by the Washington Post Company, can feel that this kind of unconfirmed reporting should even be considered for publication is beyond comprehension. In my opinion, it was the most irresponsible, most disgusting and most damaging kind of reporting. I can see the powers that be sitting around the conference table talking. "If we don't print it now, someone else will beat us to the stands." "But, what if it isn't true?" "Do you want to lose the credit for breaking this story or not???" "Find some artwork of a toilet."

So now, just what do we believe that we read now? I have always tended to believe what I wanted to, culling through newspapers, magazines and even television newscasts, deciding what was true and what wasn't. If we aren't independent thinkers, we're doomed to fall for just anything we read or hear. One of my favorite sites is They do a pretty good job of confirming or denying internet gossips that way too many people continue to forward and forward and forward. Just who do we turn to when we want some verification of a newscast or magazine article? How do we know who to believe and throw our support behind anymore? My advice is to be a smart consumer. Pay attention to things around you and seek the truth. Don't be swayed into thinking "If they said it on NBC, it MUST be true!" Farewell Dan Rather. Farewell Newsweek. I only wish I had a subscription to that publication so I could cancel it. Maybe I'll check and see just what else The Washington Post Company owns. If I find out, I'll put the list here. As just one person, I will not support any advertisers who use Newsweek (darn, I may have to look at the magazine to find that out!)and if I find out who else is under the umbrella of that company, I intend to eliminate them from the list of people I do business with. It won't make any difference to them, but it will make me feel better.

By the way, the reporter who broke this story, Mike Isakoff, is the same reporter who broke the story on Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. Oh joy. Pulitzer journalism, to be sure.

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