My Changing Media Diet

Posted: May 4, 2011 by jbianchi23 in Uncategorized

Over the course of this semester, several aspects of my media consumption have changed, at least slightly. As a business student, it is to my advantage that I read the newspaper each morning in order to stay current and up to date with what is going on in terms of corporate America as well as government and related news topics. For this reason, I subscribe to the Wall Street Journal. Last semester, I would walk to my on-campus mailbox every morning to pick up the paper. Either due to the inconvenience or more simply, my own laziness, I now no longer receive a hard paper copy of the newspaper. Rather, I read it online. Not only is this option more convenient, it is cheaper and more economical since I consume less paper. Maybe reading the newspaper at all is considered to be old-fashioned or outdated; but my shift to the virtual newspaper world is certainly more current.

In terms of social networking and Facebook, my consumption has increased slightly. I find myself posting more on friends’ walls and using the Facebook Chat more frequently than before. Again, it can probably be attributed to the convenience of typing compared to texting or making a phone call. But maybe it is more than that. My friends are on Facebook literally all day long. So having multiple people on the same platform at once makes a virtual social life even more enticing since I can interact with several people at once, all on the same website.

The biggest change I feel has occurred in terms of my media consumption would probably have to be news related. Previously, I would watch one particular news source and just accept what I would hear, for the most part. Now, however, I do not rely on one television news source, but several. I find the information to be more believable when it is heard from more than one credible source. Further, the information that I hear only from one station, I essentially omit from my understanding of the current news. As a media consumer, I feel that only the information that is reiterated through several sources is actually credible and reliable. For instance, when I see a story on the news about someone being robbed in a particular area, I know that this station is just trying to fill up airtime, because that is not news. People get robbed all the time.  I feel that by being more aware of how news stations operate makes me a more critical media consumer since I no longer just accept what I hear on television. More than that, news related information that I hear from my friends on Facebook is hardly considered credible. For example, when my friends posted that “Osama bin Laden has been killed,” I listened to what they said, but turned on the television in order to confirm it. Once I saw several channels with that same headline, I accepted it as fact and moved on.

In general, I would say that I consume about the same amount of media on a daily basis as I have previously. However, now I am more critical of what I accept in terms of news and facts. I still watch movies that same way; that is, I do not try to figure out what will happen, I just watch it. Aside from this aspect, I feel that entertainment is still very pertinent in my life. I feel that my entertainment consumption is relatively similar to what it has always been (movies, music, internet browsing etc.), but my knowledge consumption is more analytical and critical. For one last example, when I read an article for a class, I find myself asking the article questions – essentially critiquing it inadvertently. Once I am done reading, I often use the internet to try to confirm what the author was saying and answer my questions. This is probably the most useful tool I can take with me for the rest of my academic life.

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