Thursday, 12 July 2018

CNN 'Shock' or 'Outrage' Factor

Maybe it's just me, but it just seems like that in a 30-minute period while watching typically get at least three journalists or 'guests' who seem to be shocked or outraged. 

I admit, I try to limit myself to no more than 60 minutes a week of CNN.  Part of the problem is that they are mostly a Trump-network now....owned by the President and the bulk of the news delivered has to be Trump in some fashion.  Another problem is that they bring on so many guests to be 'experts', and they are trying to drag you along to some conclusion....rather than just laying out the facts.  Finally, I'll admit that CNN of not the CNN of 2001.  I'm one of those people who think their better work....was over a decade ago.

So onto the the topic of shock or outrage.

When I typically worked (yes, before retirement)....about once a month, you would walk into some situation where you were a bit shocked or outraged.  It typically would involve some soap-opera event where Lieutenant Joe was arrested for indecent drunken behavior or Airman Snuffy had accidentally destroyed a $3,000 piece of equipment.  You'd typically stand there with the associate, contemplating how this incident occurred, and the consequences that would follow.  Maybe you'd have a follow-up discussion the next day over the event, and then it'd all be forgotten.

So over my thirty-six year career of work....I probably saw around 500 moments of shock or outrage.

The problem with the CNN usage of shock or outrage....if you were watching eight hours a day of their'd reach the 500 number in approximately two weeks.

That would be like comparing a guy who drinks a Pepsi a day for thirty years, making for 10,950 events with the a guy who drank the 10,950 sodas in six weeks (meaning that he had 260 Pepsis per day).

The long-term consequence?  Well....once you get on the CNN program, it'd only take a couple of months to 'train' you on shocks or outrages being less of a big deal.  Maybe in a year....nothing much would really shock you or outrage you anymore (even if your wife threw out all the beef in the freezer and put you on a vegan-diet).

So you start to look at 2020 (18 months away) and wonder....if all your shock and outrage is maxed out, what exactly can CNN market or sell if Trump goes for another four years?  Yeah, that's a long pause for folks to ponder upon that little issue.

Then you start to look at regular people, who live in quiet spheres of life.  You go to some Iowa farmer and his biggest shock or outrage is when the bull finally found the weak point in the fencing and escaped.

Or you have some housewife who woke up to realize the neighbor is doing a $2,000 landscaping job with four hefty and chunky Mexican guys who all go shirtless in the summer heat.

Or like my brother....waking up to realize the fifty-year old freezer in the back of the house finally 'died', and spending an hour of time sipping coffee and expressing 'shock' that it didn't last another ten more years.

At some point, CNN will have to reset the shock/outrage factor, and cut about 80-percent of the 'RPM'.  Some doctor will come a Doctor Phil-character, and chat for sixteen minutes on how to survive without all the shock or outrage.

Then we will realize.....there just wasn't that much to be shocked or outraged over.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

From the brother (me): I still mourn the loss of old Norge (the deep freezer)... but, our cousin turned it into a mini wood kiln, so it lives on in a way. To your point, I'll admit, I was shocked and at least concerned (if not a little outraged), and I'd have difficulty sustaining that feeling daily. :)