Fame, scandals make news

Martha Stewart won’t be known for her keen sense of taste. Kobe Bryant won’t be known for his crossover. O.J. Simpson will not go down in history as one of the greatest running backs of all time. However, in the news, the over-exposure of celebrities like these and many others puts Hollywood in the limelight waiting for the next lead on a story to happen.

The World Book dictionary defines news as, “Information about recent events or happenings, especially as reported by newspapers, periodicals, radio, or television. This is a presentation of such information, as in a newspaper or on a newscast.”

News in the media-sense was originally created to inform the general public. Once newspapers could be mass-produced, delivering the news was a way to keep a large percentage of citizens informed and educated on things they needed to know about – the government, society, sports and entertainment.

The broadcasted news in the 21st century is centralized more towards what will lure advertisers to pay to have their commercials aired. Sex, scandals and celebrities sell.

But is this the type of news that citizens want to know about? As a consumer of news, I want to know foremost what is going on in my community and local area before what is going on with a celebrity whose tribulations will never affect me. What is news to a celebrity’s family and friends means nothing to me.

In a search conducted on cnn.com, Martha Stewart produced 124 results. Michael Jackson, 659. However, a search performed for minimum wage reduction produced only 24 results. Is this a problem?

A current affair such as minimum wage reduction could affect millions of Americans, but the media would rather inform the public on the Martha Stewart case, which has little or no relevance to most Americans.

The idea of the more educated citizens are, the more powerful they will be, could be a possible reason as to why the media tries to sugar-coat our news. Giving the casual news-watcher just a small portion of the current affairs of our nation and that of the world keeps them updated, but not educated.

If the public is trained on watching just this little bit of information about the things that affect them the most and gets inundated with all of the ins and outs of the court cases of celebrities, their love life and the scandals that follow them, then they will expect no more. However, if people are expecting to tune in to the news for facts about government and issues that affect their life, then the Michael Jackson cases and Martha Stewart cases and who J-Lo is marrying next will seem unimportant.

Television shows such as Entertainment Tonight, Extra and Inside Edition provide the people of America with the scoops on celebrities that they are looking for.

News today in America has become so focused on who’s who and what scandal they have preformed and is not letting citizens be accurately informed on current issues, which is what news should really be.