Thursday, July 23, 2009

That's news?

It really bugs me how news gets juxtaposed with pop culture drivel on some of the major news outlets.

You've seen what I'm talking about, right?
Male TV news anchor: "...and we'll continue to update you with the latest from Santa Barbara, where a wildfire has consumed 8600 acres and destroyed nearly 100 homes. Many lives are in danger. But right now, over to you, Megyn, for the latest on swimsuits we can expect to see hitting the beaches this summer..."

Female counterpart: "Thanks, Bill! That's right, take a look at these pictures. Wow, these bikinis are sure to light some fires on the beach...!"
One of the worst offenders I've seen is FoxNews.com. Now I'm a fan of Fox News. But their website absolutely drives me crazy. The top part of their homepage is headlines and breaking news. But then if you scroll down a little further, what you have is a display of "news" from Hollywood and other items meant to titillate and scandalize.

For instance, on today's homepage of FoxNews.com, here's what you can find out about:
  • "Hef's Twins Sweet Treats" (this is talking about the latest Playboy centerfold)
  • "Sexy Beach Body Contest" (you can vote on the "Summer's Sexiest Bod")
  • "Eyebrow Shaving Freaks" (supermodels without eyebrows!! Wow!!)
  • "Kiss Your Way to Better Sex"(the teaser asks, "Are your kissing skills up to par?")

What, do the folks at Fox News think we're all so infantile that we need that kind of stuff to come back to their website? (They may be right, unfortunately, but that doesn't excuse them from responsibility to stick to their mission.)

A couple months ago I wrote an email to Fox News about their website. Here's what I wrote:
Guys at FOXNews.com,

I wish you would try to put less sordid and sexual stuff on the "Features and Faces" section of your website. I love Fox News, it's the only cable news channel I watch, and I check your website throughout the day. So I'm a fan. But c'mon. Here's what you have on the website as "Features and Faces" right now...
  • Kim's One Hot Sweater
  • Elle Liberachi's Sexy Tune (with accompanying fleshy picture)
  • Fergie Admits Lesbian Past
  • Hottest Bisexual Stars

And this is typical fare. Lately, it seems like this section of the website is where you're competing with Cosmopolitan magazine for attention. As a father and a person who doesn't think American citizens need any more titillation than what's out there already, I'd appreciate a more "newsy" website with less emphasis on the scandalous and sexual. That's not news.
I didn't get a reply.

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