Sunday, November 28, 2010

What to do about those "Talking Heads"?

Silencing the Talking Heads, Mönchehaus Museum, Goslar, Germany, August 2010,
Panasonic DMC-ZS7, Focal length 10.3mm, Exposure 1/40 sec @ f4, ISO 200, no flash
© Steven Crisp  [Click on the photo to enlarge]
Yes indeed, what to do about those "Talking Heads".  You know the ones I mean ... it doesn't matter if you sit to my right or my left.  Both sides have them.  Has it always been this way?  I think not.

Before the advent of the 24-hour Cable News Network (thanks Ted ;-), things seemed, well,  so much newsier.  Interesting how with only a limited time to learn about the days and weeks events, journalists and anchormen had to prepare well-edited, news stories.

Now it seems to me like some strange combination of entertainment, infomercial, and biased-opinion masked as news, stuck on a treadmill of repetition, interspersed with some BREAKING NEWS story that as often as not turns out to be TV's equivalent of tabloid journalism (anyone remember "Balloon Boy"?)

It really doesn't matter if the Talking Head knows what he's talking about ... just so long as he keeps on talking.  And frankly, the more outlandish and provocative his uninformed pronouncements, the better.  Makes for really good sound bites in the next 24-hour news cycle.

There is good news in all of this, however.  A lot of folks realize these "news" channels provide nothing that benefit them directly.  And they are starting to turn off the TV.  Some are going so far as to get rid of the TV.  What a life-affirming step that would be.  Worried about your lack of time?  How would you like to have all those hours laid before you each and every day to do with as you see fit?  That's pretty empowering.

And what of the "real news"?  Once again, the internet has come to your rescue and offers it up to you in whatever size, shape, and bias you want.  You are in charge.  And you can scan the headlines and only read about (or watch and listen in video clips and podcasts) those stories which really do matter to you.  Or maybe those that will motivate you.  Or inspire you.

You know this is true, deep down.  You are fully, entirely, empowered.  The next step is up to you.  What steps will you take to silence the talking heads?

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