Modern journalism is deeply broken

The selective use of facts, the near-total lack of context and the relentless negativity of the mainstream media distort the world we live in and keep us misinformed. This all shows us that modern journalism is deeply broken.
We know that reporters aren’t even pretending to be objective. It used to be that journalists reported the facts: who, what, when, where, how and why. But somewhere along the way, the mission changed. Journalists realized that if a piece of reportage doesn’t tell readers or viewers what they’re supposed to think and feel, they might draw conclusions that don’t fit the desired narrative.

The consequence is that we discover a massive ignorance, even among well-informed, highly educated people. Everyone seems to get the world not only devastatingly wrong, but systematically wrong. Even the heaviest consumers of news is poorly informed as if they have no knowledge at all. People are by far more pessimistic these days than the data shows.

The problem is that we all depend on the media to learn what is happening around the world. Most of us don’t have access to the data necessary to create an independent perspective on a wide variety of subjects. Journalists do. Finding problems and setbacks isn’t difficult during a global pandemic, of course.

There is no shortage of negative developments around the world. There always have been and here always will be. But that’s not the whole story and certainly not the most balanced or accurate one. There are lots of promising developments and positive trends that bode well for the future.

Sven Franssen