This week, the Philosophy Club will present club member Rachel Cisto on the topic:
"Supply and Demand: Limited Information, Cable News and the Monsters under the Bed"
Journalists strive to balance two very distinct needs: the need for truthful, relevant information and the need to capture and retain viewers and readers. At times, these can seem unrelated, or even at odds -- especially in the case of cable news. Very few people watch cable news 24/7, so in order to tell the news and keep their viewers, news agencies have to be entertaining while presenting the newest information.
So what do you do in a case like Flight 370 where there is NO new information?
As Chris Hayes shows in his MSNBC segment, some networks choose to fill their time with inane drivel: "is the plane in a black hole?" Others choose fear tactics: "the plane is being weaponized in Pakistan!"
Is it true? At the time, we don't know. Probably not. But journalism 101 is you don't tell viewers what you don't know.
Watch the segment for yourself:
"I agree with Chris," Cisto says. "As journalists, our primary objective should be truth. Viewers are important, sure, but not to the point where you're twisting the truth to get them. We should be giving people the tools to fight off the monsters under the bed, not creating them."
The University of Hartford Philosophy Club meets every Thursday during Fall and Spring Semesters -- with the exception of the first Thursday of each semester -- from 12:15 to 1:45 p.m. in 422 Auerbach Hall on the campus of the University of Hartford.
The Club has an informal, jovial atmosphere. It is a place where students, professors, and people from the community at large meet as peers. Sometimes presentations are given,followed by discussion. Other times, topics are hashed out by the whole group.
Presenters may be students, professors, or people from the community. Anyone can offer to present a topic. The mode of presentation may be as formal or informal as the presenter chooses. Bring friends. Suggest topics and activities.Take over the club! It belongs to you! Food and drink are served. Come and go as you wish.
For more information, contact Brian Skelly: at firstname.lastname@example.org or 413-642-0334.