The media shows the public what we want to see. Journalists don’t waste their time writing articles and features about the average person doing an average thing. That isn’t entertaining. The usual, weird, and outlandish is what the public want to hear about. In Mitchell Stephens’ book A History of News there is a whole chapter (chapter 8) devoted to the outlandish stories that we crave. We want the people biting dog stories. The stories that go against the norm and the stories that are different from our daily life. For example, celebrity news.
In the Political Challenged: Texas Tech Edition students are asked a series of questions. The first half are either about United States history or politics and the second half is about celebrity news. Watching this as a history major, or as I like to say “a historian in training,” was terrifying. It gives evidence that the average American student,at least in 2014, was more concerned with what was happening to celebrities rather than what had happened and is happening to the U.S.
Will this ever change? The public will always crave to know more about the unusual. People want to see what celebrities go through because it’s incredibly different, though not always, than the average life we lead. I know that I. personally, hope that there will be a renewed craving for less celebrity news and more impacting news about the world, but will that happen? Only time and news will tell.