I stayed up late last night to finish off the last couple of episodes of The Newsroom that I hadn’t ever circled back to since I started watching maybe two months ago, and I suppose if I had but one line of commentary to say about the show, it would be something along the lines of, “Man – now I have to wait until next summer for more?!”
Needless to say, I really enjoyed this show!
I enjoyed it not only for its entertainment and comedic value, but I think even more so for the attention that it brings to a sorely lacking media machine that we have to endure here in the US in 2012. While some have criticized the show’s use of actual events for entertainment purposes when in reality many were real tragedies, I think we still have something to learn from many of them and if it takes a TV drama to revisit and highlight the flaws that our current media regime doesn’t want to admit are real problems, then so be it. Things like focusing on ratings and sensationalism instead of actually reporting on what’s important, fighting to be the first to break a story rather than ensuring that what they report is actually accurate in the first place, and pandering to “both sides” when one side is so far off base that it’s closer to crazy than a legitimate opposite perspective on issues – with so much at stake in America today, these are the reasons why we need news sources that actually report fair and accurate news, not sensationalized propaganda that just furthers to polarize us with misrepresentations of the truth meant to pander to our own personal agendas.
In 2012 more than ever, we need news that gives us the facts, not necessarily the partisan-vetted facts that individuals want to hear.
When a news outlet reports that congresswoman Gabriel Giffords is dead when she actually isn’t, it should make us start to question what else falls through the cracks in their everyday editorial process.
When it comes to light that a major media mogul has been involved in illegal wiretapping overseas to ensure that his organization would be the first to break stories, we should be asking why he wouldn’t be inclined to do the same here on our own soil.
When more focus is placed on a congressman’s sexting scandal than on actual issues that Congress needs to be addressing for a nation in dire need, we should be the ones to realize that our consumption of this garbage instead of holding the media accountable for staying on top of actual news in a huge part of the problem.
And besides, you can’t tell me that a seven-minute clip like this isn’t some of the most compelling television you’ve watched this year…
I, for one, look forward to seeing how Aaron Sorkin continues to push the envelope with this show more next year, and maybe – just maybe – the real media will catch on and strive to live up to the example we’re seeing of a better direction for the news from this fictional TV show that’s been based on their past performance, too.