Students open discussion

How To Process News Positively

Here we’re in 2013!  And our team went through an editorial roller coaster, derailing too often toward the dark side of the News.  Collectively we started analyzing our reaction after:  Aurora, the battle field created by the electoral campaign. Then came, the devastation from hurricane Sandy, followed by the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre, barely eclipsed by the End of the World competing with the Fiscal Cliff,  for the scariest effects on our psyche.

We came to an obvious conclusion,  on a daily basis the news as reported by the media is polluting our mental space with negativity.   As journalists we can’t ignore the catastrophes seen on the news, but we believe we can process them differently.

There are 2 ways to examine the case of Jioty Singh Panday,  murder rape in New Delhi, India,  a tragedy caused by the lowest level of human behavior (negative form), or, a heartbreaking event highlighting Indian women’s fight for respect. (positive form)

Negative Processing: Examples…

  • Gory description of the rape.
  • Details about the rapists.
  • Judgment about the victim’s behavior or attire.
  • Releasing names of the murderers.
  • Stories reporting on the violent side of the reaction protests.

Positive Processing :

  • Interview of friends remembering the victim.
  • Story behind her martyr name, Braveheart.
  • Talks of initiatives for change by dedicated associations.
  • Reporting on peaceful and hopeful tributes.

Let’s  illustrate the concept by comparing this Article from Elle France, showing women destroying a bar that sells a drink called, Balatkari,  (« the rapist » in hindi). As opposed to 600 hundred guitarists in Darjeeling playing John Lennon Imagine for the young Braveheart.

Discussion:

Plan I ( for Ideal):  “To have a video of this Memorial event, none of us can find one “.

Plan B : ” We can use the picture and play John Lennon.”

” Let’s try! ”

Musicians play John Lennon's "Imagine" in a memorial tribute to the 23-year old Indian gang rape victim, during a mass guitar ensemble played by some 600 guitarists in Darjeeling on January 3, 2013.      Photo credit: DIPTENDU DUTTA/AFP/Getty Images
Musicians play John Lennon’s “Imagine” in a memorial tribute to the 23-year old Indian gang rape victim, during a mass guitar ensemble played by some 600 guitarists in Darjeeling on January 3, 2013. Photo credit: DIPTENDU DUTTA/AFP/Getty Images
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