The News.

by Lori Dwyer on February 12, 2014 · 10 comments

I don’t watch the news anymore.

I quit years ago. I don’t read newspapers. I don’t watch the five o’clock news bulletins. I scroll past anything on Twitter or Reddit or FaceBook that might force me to face up to the real world outside of my own little bubble.

And I think I like it this way.

I’ve heard before that it’s recommended that people suffering from depression don’t watch the news. And I can’t imagine it being a productive activity in terms of anxiety.

There is so much to worry about in life. It all seems significantly worse when it’s presented in full colour, high definition, complete with the concerned tones of news anchors or the irritating comments section of news websites. 

It feels selfish sometimes- as though I don’t care about the world. As though I have some kind of moral obligation to know what’s happening around me, all the time. As though being aware of the injustices of the world would be enough to fix them.

In reality, even if I was faced with the biggest of injustices and the most obvious of degradation… I probably wouldn’t have the energy to change anything. Activism is outside the realms of my own possibilities right now. 

People existed for thousands of years without knowing what was happening globally. Without TV, without the Internet. And everything was fine. 

They say things are the best they’ve ever been. We have technology and insight. We’re globally connected in a way the worlds never been before. Wars and murders are at an all-time low. It’s just that every day we’re presented with a blackboard of disheartening images and overwhelming information… stuff we don’t really need to know.

If ignorance is bliss… then not watching the news is a simple matter of happiness.

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Sue February 17, 2014 at 11:31 am

I also don’t watch the news. I do however check out the front pages of Reddit and I seem to know what is going on in the world and I only delve into what I think is important to me. The constant reporting of mostly negative things affects you, regardless if you suffer from depression or not.


Suzy Mac February 13, 2014 at 10:33 pm

PS well done keeping your head up and your fingers moving over the keyboard – you still write beautifully. xo
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Suzy Mac February 13, 2014 at 10:30 pm

I’m with you Lori, I haven’t watched the news since the election. I’ve tried a couple of times, but its kind of like Tarantino films after you have a child- I just cant stomach it anymore.


Mel G February 13, 2014 at 7:54 pm

Reminds me of the old Skyhooks song, Horror Movie. Which was about the 6 o’clock news.


Di February 13, 2014 at 7:16 pm oh goodness i didnt realise it was that long ago!!!
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Kelly February 13, 2014 at 11:04 am

I don’t watch the news either! I will read it occasionally but in very small doses. I don’t need to watch the news because someone is always willing to tell you bad news. I then decide what level I want to be exposed to it. Sometimes that means I read an article, sometimes I don’t. Life is hard enough without seeking out the bad stuff.
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Whoa, Molly February 13, 2014 at 8:27 am

I don’t watch the television news – I feel like TV thinks I’m stupid and I can’t watch without getting angry. Anyway, I don’t get very good reception where I live, so it’s not something I have to worry too much about.

I wont read most ‘newspapers’ for the same reason.

I consume a really large amount of news online. All day, in fact. Too much. It gets exhausting, overwhelming. There’s a special kind of cognitive dissonance and doublethink you need to have to be able to see the fucking awful things going on in the world, from the everyday awfulness to large-scale catastrophe, and still be able to go about your business and your life like any of it is actually important.

I was about to say it’s different because I’m not depressed, but after writing out my last paragraph, you know what? Maybe I am.

I think what I get most from this huge over-consumption is just plain angry. Furious. And when there’s nothing I can do with that fury it kind of collapses in on itself with exhaustion and leaves a big void. I guess that’s a little easier than being angry all the time, right?
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Carly Findlay February 13, 2014 at 7:21 am

I’m not sure how to respond when people say they don’t watch or read the news – when they tell me they’re unaware of a massive event or cause or tragedy, sometimes I think they lack in empathy because they don’t want to know what’s going on in the world. I definitely think consuming news can shift the introspection and help see others’ situations.
Consuming news in this modern day can be more selective than 10 years ago – we can choose how much and what we consume through the Internet.
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Drea B February 12, 2014 at 10:05 pm

I read the news sites but there are times a take a break, or there’s something partiuclarly horrific and my husband tells me to just not bother looking that day. The news sites are just horrible, it would be much better if they focused on the good news rather than the terrible things that do happen.


Di February 12, 2014 at 9:40 pm

youve got it right lori….i rarely watch it, …shirley strachan from skyhooks had it right ,’its a horror movie, right there on my tv”.
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