Thursday, February 16, 2012

Consuming the News

This morning, I thought I’d post a note on a subject I’ve been struggling with over the years.

The problem? The news that is sold to us is a tad too negative, sensationalist and intentionally depressive. Negative stuff sells. Yes, I know that.

I’ve had my up and down cycles with this thing. There was a time when I used to spend more than 30 minutes getting up to date on the news. Then, after a book that recommended I don’t bother checking the news out, I did that too and went for a long period relying on important news coming through via friends, family and occasionally Facebook.

That couldn’t go on for long though. I clearly remember the evening when there was a discussion on the outbreak of the Arab spring and the not-so-smart feeling of not knowing the details of what was going on.

I experimented with news via email for a while. I experimented reading the free news papers on the train to work here in London.  Still no joy.

The moment of joy came when I made a long overdue shift to Google Reader for blog consumption and tapped into the Financial Times and WSJ news feeds. This was in perfect format - a headline and 3-4 lines describing the news. I love this because I can now skim and click to read stuff that interests me (not very often). And this way, I know what’s going on without internalizing the gory details or looking at any pictures.

Additionally, thanks to the brilliant Reeder app on the iPhone, skimming the news on the commute is an absolute breeze!

I know of a few positive newspapers that exist and have heard good things about the Huffington Post. Maybe I’ll check those out as well. For now, I’m celebrating the joy of feeds and at finding a solution after 3 years of experimentation. Those of you who’ve been on Google Reader all these years must be having a laugh. :-)

If you guys have any suggestions on good newspapers/feeds, I’d love to know. At this point, I’ve been pretty happy with the FT and WSJ. Always happy to experiment..

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