Media Topics That Need More Coverage…

In my last blog posting I mentioned that I am trying to be better about blogging more regularly, and hopefully more frequently, and that to help me accomplish that task I would use topic suggestions that I got from Chris Brogan.  On his list of 100 is this one, coming in at 69.  I know…I am doing these out of order.  But that is how I do things some times.  Besides, I don’t think Chris intended for them to be written in sequential order.  After all, they are just ideas; which brings me to what I have to say about today’s topic.

This past weekend our nation was shocked at the shooting rampage that took place in Tucson, Arizona, in which a federal judge was among a few people killed and a US Congresswoman was severely injured and lucky to still be alive.  What is interesting is that for a while these were the only people mentioned by name…likely because information hadn’t been released yet about the others that had been shot.  Throughout the day news reports updated the world with more and more information.

One thing that I noticed for the first couple of days is that the news reporters were more interested in the congresswoman’s recovery than they were about the other victims.  There were six people killed and more than a dozen wounded.

Before I go on any further I need to say that I do feel bad for the congresswoman and my intent is not to downplay the seriousness of what she is going through.  And I hope that my acquaintances who are democrats and know I am a republican don’t take this the wrong way.  But I do not think that the fact that she is a congresswoman means she is more important of a person than the 9 year girl that was killed.  Or, how about the two husbands that shielded their wives on the ground to protect them?  One was killed, the other injured.  How about the congresswoman’s aide that was killed?  There were many people involved, yet the media could only focus on the politician.  That is what I did not like about the media coverage for this weekend.

I know it may come across as a little bit controversial for me to say that this media topic doesn’t need so much coverage.  But, you see, that isn’t really what I am saying at all.  How about giving more coverage to all the victims and less coverage on the psycho-analysis of the shooter that everyone wants to give?  How about avoiding all together the coverage being given to those that are making more of a political statement about this than should be, specifically about assigning blame to republican political figures because the congresswoman is a democrat?  Would the shooter have acted differently had Sarah Palin not tweeted her famous statement of “don’t retreat…reload”?  I don’t believe so and anyone that believes that he did it because of statements like those is missing the big picture.  He had issues.  He wanted to make a statement.  He was going to make it no matter what Sarah Palin, Barack Obama, or Randy Palmer had to say about it.

The other day a friend of mine on Facebook posted something very derogatory about members of the Republican Party and what they are going to do to ruin the country.  Are the comments they make going to encourage me to do something senseless like this?  No.  I might make a comment asking for a “dislike” button so I can make a statement, or I might even remove them as a friend, but certainly not go on a shooting rampage.  If I were to do it, it would be because I am stupid, crazy, have some sort of vendetta, or no longer desire to live a free and happy life.  Not because of some political comment that I didn’t like or that encouraged me to become more pro-active in political support of what I believe.  We need to use common sense.  And the media needs to use it even more.

There were heroes involved in the shooting incident and it isn’t until a couple of days later that we start getting the stories about them.  There was a 9 year old victim that was an aspiring politician.  She wanted to go to college at Penn State and a life goal was to help others not as fortunate as her.  She was born on Sept. 11, 2001…the day of the terrorist attacks that rocked the nation.  And she was killed in another attack (not by organized terrorists) that likewise has rocked the nation.  There is a story to be written about this girl that should go beyond the bylines and captions and brief sentences reporting on each victim.

I know I haven’t given a list of topics that need more media coverage, but that isn’t the point.  The point is, the media focuses on whatever they need to focus on to give the story the spin they want to give.  There are many other topics within a story that need more mentioning.  If we don’t get those other stories, we won’t be completely informed citizens.  We won’t read or hear about some of the uplifting  stories of valiant knights protecting their fair maidens…or high school sweethearts…from potentially deadly gunfire.  We won’t see the whole picture.

But what do I know?  I am here just writing a blog hoping to get my point across so that I can say I have another blog entry.  Or is that what I am really doing?  Tell me of the media topics you would like to see more coverage about.  After all, we can all be media reporters…albeit social media reporters.

Just another view from a Palmtree.

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It’s a Blog…it shouldn’t be that hard!

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So the last time I wrote a blog was way back in November; the 25th to be exact.  I wrote about being thankful.  Why not, it was Thanksgiving weekend and made sense to use that topic.  So you would think that I would be able to write another blog or two (or possibly twenty) since that time…especially since we celebrated Christmas, a New Year, and I took four paid vacation and two paid holiday days off from work during that time.  Well, I didn’t.  Why?

By the way, I’m not asking in some rhetorical way in preparation to explain the reason, I am asking because I need help knowing the answer.

My wife asked me last night why I hadn’t posted a blog in the last six weeks.  I gave her a couple of simple answers.  First of all, my computer wasn’t always handy.  Second of all, even though my iPod Touch was almost always available, I don’t like writing blogs with it.  I did it once and that was enough (see my iPod Blog entry).  Third, writing a blog would take me away from my family time.  All are legitimate reasons but there is a fourth reason which is something I thought about during those six weeks.  I didn’t know what to write about.

You see, normally I have some creative writing juices flowing.  I know I could have come up with something during that time that would have been nice to read, possibly even inspirational, but it just wasn’t happening.

One of the New Year’s resolutions I made with myself was to be better at blogging during 2011.  I didn’t set a goal of blogging on a daily basis.  Not even a weekly basis.  The goal is to blog more frequently and with interesting enough topics that I get more reads with each passing blog.  Maybe through my blogging I can grow my audience so that when I finally publish my first book, it will hit the best sellers list within the first month (and I am not talking about my mom’s best sellers list either).

Today I was reading my twitter feed (which, by the way, I also have a goal of tweeting more…and that will automatically happen if I blog more since the two accounts are tied together; kind of like killing two birds with one stone) and Chris Brogan tweeted about an article he wrote giving 50 ideas for social media marketers to blog about this year to help their brand recognition and social network grow.  Linked to that article was another article he wrote a while back with 100 ideas for anyone to blog about.  I took that list and decided that if I can’t think of a topic, I will choose one of the 100 ideas to write about.

Today I didn’t have an idea on what to write about.  How is that possible when I have already written nearly 500 words and taken almost a whole page?  I get a little wordy when I explain things sometimes. Anyway, I looked at the list and idea #9 is to write about “How I Find Blogging Ideas”.  Hmmm…I need to think about that one.

<<Chirp, Chirp, Chirp…can you picture the crickets in your mind?  I know it is winter and crickets aren’t out and about right now, but just picture it for a minute.>>

Obviously I have a hard time finding blogging ideas.  Sometimes my inspiration comes from something that really irritates me.  Sometimes it comes from the Merriam-Webster word-of-the-day app on my computer desktop.  Sometimes it comes from something really funny or interesting or just plain weird that I happen to see or hear.  Sometimes it doesn’t come from anywhere…I just start typing and words spill out.  I guess that is why I get wordy at times.

The point is, I don’t have one font of inspiration for my blogging ideas.  Some people blog about one or maybe two specific topics and that is all they focus on.  Like the political bloggers, or the social media marketing bloggers, or even cooking bloggers.  But that isn’t what my blog is about, and that is probably why I don’t have the biggest following around (sorry to disappoint you this way, but it just had to be admitted to the public).  I like to write about anything and everything and just share my point of view.  That is where the ideas come from.  If I have a view I want to share, I do.

Today, I don’t have a view to share.  Or maybe I do and I just did.  I don’t know.  It was an idea, and it came from a list that I got from someone else that has a blog.

Just another view from a Palmtree.