By Contributing Writer Andrew Henry
The state of the news media is an important factor in this Democracy, effecting everyone from newborn babies in their cribs to the retirees fortunate enough to be vacationing in their vacation homes in these times of skyrocketing mortgages and rent or a student dealing with studies and family matters and trying to asses the job market.
A natural disaster could affect your area and you may need to know if you should evacuate. There might be a terrorist attack and you need to know what your government is doing about it. So much is happening every day and that reality begs the question: How are we informed? How do we get informed? And how do we stay informed?
News can be acquired in so many different ways. Individuals have unlimited choices for news outlets for them to obtain information. I’ve interviewed six students on subjects relating to the news, asking such questions as how they got their news, how often they checked their news outlets and their opinions on matters that they considered news important.
JULIA SUAREZ, 19, wearing a black & white striped T-shirt, denim shorts, blue & white Adidas superstars (sneakers), and silver necklace, from Woodhaven Queens, New York, described in an interview what news meant to her. “I would define news as an event that a large number of people are talking about in newspapers, news broadcasts, and social media.” Interview conducted via e-mail.
DEJANIRA BUDANSIGNH, 21, a double major in media studies and English, with a minor in sociology, who lives in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, said in her interview, “News is anything that informs a person of something that they were previously unaware of. It can change from what’s going on in the presidential election to Beyoncé releasing a secret album. As long as it’s something refreshing and new to the intake its news.” Interview conducted by e-mail.
DANIELLE DAIZ, 20, who lives in Woodside, Queens, New York, said, “News is anything that informs citizens & provides them the right to be self-governing.” Interview conducted via e-mail.
JULIA SUAREZ said, “I usually gravitate towards news on the election, celebrity gossip, fashion (side note: Snapchat specifically has been really good on covering the behinds the scenes aspect of New York Fashion Week (NYFW) and of course, the runway and designer interviews), award shows such as the Grammy’s, Golden Globes, etcetera, sports news, more specifically news involving the U.S. soccer women’s national team and the U.S. men’s and women’s beach volleyball and regular volleyball teams, and other miscellaneous news like whatever is trending that day. ”
“The most recent miscellaneous news reports I’ve been following are about the Brock Turner case. I followed that story as soon as someone re-tweeted the victim’s letter on Twitter and the whole thing was just disgusting and baffling to me. I was in shock that he was only sentenced to six months in jail and was just angry when he got out after only three months. The only good thing that came out of that was California passing a bill making prison time mandatory for anyone convicted of sexually assaulting a person who is unconscious or too intoxicated to consent.”
“The people protesting outside his house are great too. I would say I focus primarily on news pertaining to women’s rights since I also followed Ke$ha’s story and numerous sexual assault cases on college campuses. I also follow LGBTQ news on Twitter since it’s still shocking to me that they’re still fighting for rights that everyone should have.”
KASHIMA GRANT, 27, a media studies major who lives in Jamaica, Queens, said, “I like human interest and anything that deals with racial tensions in the world today. I also enjoy celebrity news because sometimes they are really funny.” Interview conducted via e-mail.
AVID MALDONADO, 23, a media studies major wearing a red shirt, blue jeans, and black shoes from the Bronx, said, “Those that I think impact me personally. It could be an education bill that’s being passed, the current election, minimum wage, or job market.” Interview conducted on campus.
The intel this writer got from his interviews illustrate that not everyone is interested in the same kind of news. It strengthens my belief that it is important that there be lots of news outlets to address America’s diversity.
Andrew Henry can be reached at Andrew.Henry86@myhunter.cuny.edu