Monday, March 05, 2007

Why the Media Hates Good News

If you love conspiracy theories, you will love this post, but I think I have finally figured out why the media hates good news and loves bad. This subject has been of great interest to me and the following are just a few of the titles I have had on the subject:

* More Bad News for Those Who Love Bad News

* The Half Empty World of the News

* As the Economy Enjoys Good News, Critics Receive Bad

I have written several more and they all have a similar theme, the media lives off of bad news. Furthermore, I believe that the media makes a living off of bad news. There are some logical reasons for the media to like bad news.

People are not nearly as interested in good news as they are in bad. As Don Henley said in one of my classic rock favorites -- give us the dirty laundry! News, by design, is meant to warn, protect, and prepare. Most of the stories that fall in these categories, tend to be negative in nature. If the weather was perfect, who would need to know the forecast? If all neighborhoods were safe, there would be no stories about the parts of town to stay away from. And if all things were perfect, we would likely find the news really boring. This has been a huge force in driving the global warming hysteria.
More sinister than this, and this is where my conspiracy theory comes out, when the economy is performing well, many businesses don't invest nearly as much on advertising. When people can easily find clients, they are less likely to invest money in marketing. When the economy gets weaker they are often forced to make such expenditures or face terrible consequences. Bad news can foster a negative view of the economy, which can lead to an actual economic decline.
I know, it is a little far fetched, but when I talk to my associates in media many are actually glad about the possibility of a rumored economic decline and think things might be improving for their business. Call it what you will, but I call it the economics of bad news.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Kevin,
Thanks for visiting the "Truth in PR" blog.

Just so you know, I am an aspiring PR practitioner dedicated to keeping the PR industry honest in its practices. I am a 23-year old male that worked for an agency and saw how half-assed things were done and how not much thought underlined its counsel.

My blog is Positive O's advice on how PR can adhere to ethical principles in dealing with the media, its clients, and in looking inside themselves before they push "send."

I invite you to continue to visit "Truth in PR" and let me know if you have any advice for the PR community.

And yes, I believe the media does enjoy the bad news. Without it, there's no chaos, gossip, and interest in other's shortcomings. Gross, I know.

12:27 PM  
Blogger Kevin Price said...

Thank you for your comment. I wish you well on your ambitious endeavor!

11:24 PM  

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