I am a news junkie. I love being informed, being the one who can hold a conversation concerning current events. Therefore, I didn’t have to do too much research to find three targets for this blog post. I don’t even feel that I’ve gone after the lowest-hanging fruits on the journalistic tree, either.
I’d like to start with a news source that is rampantly popular on Facebook: Huffington Post. I can’t tell if being a popular outlet with the Facebook demographic is a symptom of its quality, or if the relationship works the other way around. I can’t tell if HuffPo aims below me, or if they’re aiming high and riding the journalistic short bus in ignorant bliss. For the purpose of this post, I’m choosing to perceive the former rather than the latter.
First and foremost in my litany of complaints to lodge against Huffington Post is that the presented narrative is unabashedly biased. I challenge you to find a conservative commentator who writes for HuffPo. I don’t believe that you can. Not only is this an insult to the service of public discourse that journalism is supposed to provide, but the lack of opposing narratives leaves HuffPo’s front page running in circles around itself. There is no topic (lately, a man with a particularly bad hairpiece comes to mind) that can’t be and hasn’t been done to death by the team of aces writing for the Post. Speaking of…
The Huffington Post functions more as a widely circulated blogging platform than a respectable news source. Are you aware of the credentials one needs to write for HuffPo? There are none. Anyone, including your aunt-who-overshares-politically-charged-opinions-on-Facebook can write whatever they please and submit it for publication. The lack of professional writers is painfully apparent, considering how many grammatical incongruities and spelling errors litter the articles.
I think I’ve said enough.
Reuters is a huge step up from the Huffington Post — not that that requires a lot of effort — and is also a publication that I feel is aimed right at passionate, but casual consumers like myself.
Fear not; I don’t have nearly as much to say about Reuters as I did concerning HuffPo. Vitriol fuels lengthy works.
It’s plain to see that Reuters knows their audience. The articles are apolitical, succinct, and well sourced. The headlines avoid sensationalism, while at the same time drawing the reader to the articles. In an online environment which is filled with journalistic detritus, the relatively minimal and balanced approach that Reuters takes is a welcome respite. The articles themselves do not contain much technical language, meaning that they are available for consumption by members of all societal strata. I adore Reuters. End of (love) story.
For the pure intellectual, I think Bloomberg Businessweek is a wonderful source of current events. While I read Bloomberg occasionally, it’s clear to me that the articles are written with greater care and more integrity than my fleeting attention span can focus on. Bloomberg benefits (as far as I can tell) from having wonderful editors. While the articles are lengthy and nuanced, they are never cluttered, disjointed, or otherwise unenjoyable to consume. Bloomberg’s writers aren’t afraid of some lexical flexing, which can be off-putting to those who would view such a thing as “highbrow snob behavior.” Somehow, I doubt the publishers at Bloomberg are worried about this demographic, as they’ve been pumping out quality content with astounding consistency for quite some time. Bloomberg covers each subject it tackles with depth and well-researched understanding, which is imperative for the critical reader. While I am often not that reader, there are plenty of them out there. I still enjoy a Bloomberg article from time to time.