behind the scenes

Why I Don't Watch the News

3:14:00 PM

I don’t watch the news.

You’re probably wondering how can someone who works in television news not watch the news? Although it seems inconceivable, it’s true. When I’m not at work, I do not watch the news, opting instead for shows that allow me to get away from reality or getting lost in a good book instead.

That’s not to say that I’m only interested in news while I’m at work. I still read articles online and stay up to date on what’s happening around the world through various social media. Opting for my laptop, tablet or phone has distinct advantages over the television for me, namely in that I get to choose the news I want to see.

Let me explain. All day long Monday through Friday I choose news for other people. That’s what producers do. They craft shows for their audience, picking the stories other people want to know about over the stories we find interesting. That’s not to say that I don’t understand the importance of the stories we’re running. I do. But you’ve got to understand that I’m living in those stories all day long.

For me, it’s much more interesting to watch a news broadcast for the way it’s put together. I like to see which stories a producer has deemed the most important, their presentation of the content and the anchor interaction. I have a hard time watching the news as a viewer. Instead, I find myself watching as a producer, analyzing shots and story placement, in essence picking the show apart.

Perhaps a bigger reason why I don’t watch the news is this – after working in it all day long, the last thing I want to do when I get home is watch even more. Simply put, I need a break. If I immersed myself in news all the time, I’d probably go crazy. I’d most likely be depressed. At the very least my stress level would be through the roof, not to mention my blood pressure.

Here’s the simplest way I can put it: the news is my job, and while it’s a very important part of my life, I refuse to let it control my life.

Originally posted to my professional blog: http://www.wtvy.com/blogs/lessons

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1 comments

  1. Hi, Ashton! That's perfectly understandable and I was the same way. When I finished the cast and punched the time clock, I wanted entertainment, fantasy and escape, not more news. In fact, that's why I left the news business and got into entertainment. It was much more to my liking, more like fun than work, and I wasn't as eager to get away from it at the end of my shift.

    When I watch local or national newscasts on TV, I watch with the same critical eye and pick them apart. When watching a local news program, I often shout at the set because I would have produced it differently and, I think, better. Actually, I do the same thing when I watch movies. The director in me identifies lapses in continuity, bad editing and other errors that I would have avoided.

    Please smooch your little girl for me, Ashton, and post more pictures of her soon.

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