I believe we have a problem with media overload. Considering the numbers, it is hard to believe many do not have a problem with it. The average American spends about 13.6 hours consuming media in dozens of different forms. With increases in technology advances, more and more options of media have become available for users. While mediums in the media are exponentially growing, fact- based, multiple sourced journalism is dying. With smart phones and easy access to the Internet, almost anyone has the ability to be a journalist. This could be seen as positive or negative. On the negative side, anyone’s ideas, opinions, beliefs or biases can be published to the public and shared for people all over the world to see it. On the positive side, we are able to get first-hand experiences about an event, for example a video of a shooting, which decreases the story-twists reported by second or third hand accounts. With information constantly being thrown at users, it can be difficult to know which media sources to trust. We should encourage people to interact with media by asking questions first. Before trusting a media source, one should ask themselves if this is a news report, or an opinion piece. Also, users should ask themselves if the main point of the piece was proven by evidence. If the writer makes arguments, but fails to back them up, readers must be conscious of this when considering the credibility. It is important to look at the source before sharing the information. By sharing false information, it just adds to the media overload Americans are experiencing. An example that comes to mind is Facebook posts. Practically anyone can become a writer for The Odyssey, which is an opinion-based blog that allows writers to post about almost anything. These have become very popular and are often reblogged by the younger generations. These articles are not news sources, in fact, they are written by average people looking for an outlet for their thoughts and ideas. It is important to teach users not to trust everything they see online. If we can accomplish this, the overall media overload should decrease.
Very nice post. We really should encourage people to ask questions about media pieces they encounter, like you said. For example, where did you get the 13.6 hours from?