Filtering Through the News

By, 02/07/2014

Why follow current events? Besides the educational aspect, knowing what’s current has social value too—being familiar with the news means you can talk about it. But considering how much news is out there, where do you even start? And more importantly, how do you filter through what’s important and what’s just noise? Here are a couple of tips to ensure your news consumption is well-rounded and meaningful.  

Read a Variety of Sources

Don’t depend on just one source—your local newspaper, for example— for all your news needs. Mixing up where you get your news (The New York Times one day, BBC the next) keeps it fresh and may even provide different perspectives on the same story.

Just Because It’s in Print…

… doesn’t mean it’s true! Question everything you read. A journalist aims to tell a story for a particular audience and will carry natural biases in his or her writing. Recognizing these biases and the limitations journalists carry—they’re often not subject experts, they’re reporters—will make you a better news consumer.   

Be Wary of Distractions  

While there’s nothing wrong with reading a human interest story or sports/entertainment news, remember to separate leisure reading from your news reading. It may not be as exciting to read about a new law passing or an upcoming election, but it may come in handy when chatting with a future potential employer!