“Posted by Lauren Turner”
Over the past two decades, society’s idea of what is newsworthy has gone from informative to entertaining. We only watch (or read) if it’s scandalous or pertains to the lives of the celebrities currently in the spotlight. And now, the image of anonymity associated with the person giving the news has completely gone out of the window. It used to be that all we knew about the man behind the desk was his name, but now we know everything. From their sexual orientation and their weight, to their favorite restaurant and they way they dress their children, newscasters have almost become one with celebrities.
A perfect example of this can be seen in CNN’s, Anderson Cooper. He is always dressed in the nicest shirt and jackets and his hair is always perfectly coiffed. Outside of the newsroom, his sexual orientation has given way to many articles, blogs, and so forth.
One article that I found on Gawker really proved my point when talking about what we as a society deem as important. The article is titled, “Anderson Cooper is a Giant Homosexual and Everyone Knows It.” I was struck by the language of this title in relation to one of CNN’s esteemed talk show hosts. It almost seems that what he does outside the office is more important than what he talks about on the screen. I understand that we are very visual society, but I don’t think that they way newscasters live should hardly be any of our business.
We care so much about what we see, that I wonder if what is actually being said is even heard. The news used to be merely what was happening, why and where. No opinions to cloud our judgement. Now I feel that what we see on the screen, changes what we hear. If we can relate to who we see, then we are more likely to believe what they say. I understand that this done by the television stations to create a relationship with the audience , but I’m not sure if this is right.
Do you think that because image has become so important, the actual content of the news is ever lost? If so, how do you think we, as future journalists, should go about solving this problem?