Why Bad is Good

I just read yet another article bemoaning the fact that the news nowadays is full of terrible things, and that there are no takers for good news. Of how the media incites the public on a daily diet of blood and gore, and then shrugs it off as the demand from the market.

It got me thinking, and here’s my theory why “bad” news (in more ways than one) is here to stay. Perhaps I’m over-thinking this, but I’m basing it on what people generally discuss when they hear any type of news.

I think when we hear bad news, we are immediately relieved it is not us. We are grateful that we have been spared, and we finally feel a bit better about ourselves because we escaped it through some good fortune.

Reading about good news relentlessly, however, makes one feel inadequate. We feel overwhelmed by the fact that others are out there doing things, living worthwhile lives, while we just go on with our ordinary lives. I guess it makes one a wee bit disheartened, and not so happy about oneself.

So, I guess that’s why bad news remains on the front page*. What do you think?

* When I wrote that, I immediately thought about the current trends of full page advertisements on the front page. Hmmm, now is that good news or bad news? 😀

2 thoughts on “Why Bad is Good

  1. Maybe we should blame our ancestors. The 10000 year old ones. They must have hard wired the kind of response to “bad news” into our brains. Someone who managed to escape being trampled to death by a herd of elephants, or eaten up by tigers, must have come back home and reported the events in great detail, and to rapt attention. A successful trip and return possibly did not merit the same attention. So…blame it on them… for our obsession about bad news.

    Since the front page and the back side of that, and then the half of the front page is advertising…maybe in a few years time, they will just have the headlines on the front page, and the rest of the articles somewhere inside 🙂

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