In Media We Trust

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My name is Rachel O’Neal and, awkward introductions aside; I’m an aspiring journalist. I love to write, although you’ll never see me carrying a notebook for anything but school. I tend to hide what I write despite wanting to write for the masses. My experience with media and technology is limited. I have been told quite frequently that I am an old lady trapped in a 19-year-old’s body. It’s true, I love MASH, sewing and wandering the streets; but I’m not entirely media averse.

Where my understanding of technology ends

Where my understanding of technology ends

The Huffington Post is where I go to get news and information, although when I find something interesting, I will search high and low to find unbiased sources for stories I think are thought-provoking. In search of a source I’ve been known to turn over every rock, check under every bridge, and travel to lands far away. Okay so that was hyperbole but if I’m interested in a story I will run down every news article before I develop an opinion. For me that is the most irritating part of news media. However, I do think that most dedicated journalists attempt to publish non-biased information but our biases are so inherent inside of us that we tend to subconsciously write our biases in or they’re injected by the public, as journalist Jonathan Stray contends.

Where everyone else's begins

Where everyone else’s understanding of technology begins. (Picture courtesy of freerangestock.com)

One of the best things about journalists is that their reputation is constantly on the line. Personally, honesty is a value held near and dear to my heart. For better or worse I attempt to tell the truth, as I understand it, regardless of whether or not it will get me in trouble. In the interest of honesty I will admit to not understanding programming in the slightest. I will also admit that I worry a great deal about how dependent we are on media. We are constantly inundated with information; which may not be the worst thing in the world from an informational standpoint but new studies have shown that it has drastically changed the way we think and how long we can pay attention. This dependence has created a problematic reality where people have become incredibly partisan because they can choose how they consume media. For example, a democrat can choose to only look at sites that support democratic issues while ignoring other sources of potentially useful information. This information overload isn’t all bad; in fact, it’s made impossible things possible. It has given revolutionaries access to one another, friends a chance to stay up to date on each other’s lives despite distance and brought justice, if only in the eyes of society, to perpetrators of crime. Media has fundamentally changed our society, whether for good or bad remains to be seen.