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Reuters reports that one in five U.S. mortgages are underwater; the people paying them owe more than their house is worth. The real flood, however, is swamping the Internet, where gloomy financial news headlines and the antics of TV-based business reporters threaten to inundate your typical Web surfer. Financial news that now travels at the speed of fright, thanks to the Web, was much easier to digest and much happier during my time at CNBC. Ten years ago this month, I was a tech reporter at the network's Fort Lee, N.J., headquarters, watching the Dow smash through the 10,000 mark.
...because I'm ready for it. But I'm also a realist and don't anticipate the current news dynamic (and the volume of crap that entails) will disappear any time soon. So-called new media presents incredible possibilities for personal interaction and opinion-sharing that "old" media did not. But the sheer volume of content today - whether news, entertainment or anything in between - has only exacerbated the sensationalist trend that's been building for a long time.
Right or wrong, the ability to transmit and respond faster, louder, nastier - whatever - is what cuts through the noise and grabs ratings. That often comes at the expense of analysis and in-depth thinking, particularly for those whose content consumption is limited to certain environments. There’s a place for that, but quality journalism is not something that can be crowdsourced, in my humble opinion. Sometimes we actually need a knowledgeable, informed view to help us arrive at a well thought out opinion – not just a view of which way the whole echo chamber happens to be leaning on a given day. At least I hope that’s the case.
Joseph Kingsbury, Text 100