Breaking news is neither

All the news services offer BREAKING NEWS ALERTS sent to my email or phone. I am a sucker for these things, because I think they will provide only the real zingers, and right away.

Unfortunately they never work. What I want is JAPAN INVADES AGAIN or PRESIDENT REVEALED AS FREDONIAN AGENT or AIDS CURED.

What do I get? The resignation of athletic coaches, the leaked possibility of the announcement of some politician’s retirement, some celebrity did something, someone who has been decrepit for a decade dies, Christmas occurs.

With a moment’s thought it is clear how this happens. Someone says “we shall have breaking news alerts” and everyone knows what this means; it means the big stories I want. There are not very many of these. Maybe none for months! Meanwhile they notice that each one of these alerts creates a crapload of traffic to the website.

Eventually the marketing people will lobby for more frequent alerts, and they will start adding less shocking stories, and it will get more watered down. Finally there will be an “alert cycle” that is nearly a schedule, and someone will sell ad packages including the alerts. At this point not as many people rush to the site after an alert, but it’s still more than typical traffic, and that is what counts.

And that is also why someday Christmas will last six months.

In better news, I had a hell of a good plate of brown rice with saffron tonight.

How are you all?

18 thoughts on “Breaking news is neither

  1. I remember when the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot decided to finally put its Twitter account to use… by stalking Michael Vick’s house on the day of his release from prison.
    Funny, because the news I want about southeastern Virginia tends to go along the lines of MAJOR BRAC RE-ALIGNMENT or SHIPYARD TO CLOSE or PAT ROBERTSON EATS YET MORE BABIES. Well, maybe not the last bit, but still.
    In any case, I dropped their account, because I’m fucking tired of this man-bites-dog bullshit. If print media has any kind of future, this isn’t it.

  2. I get those too, those news alerts, from CNN. Worthless. The Christmas Day Almost-Bombing Of Detroit, I got four identical texts from them over the course of two hours. It wasn’t even anything really illuminating, either. (They never are, as you point out.)
    I think it’s worth putting up with the crap, though, because when the shit finally does hit the fan, we will be among the first to know. (Assuming the shit doesn’t involve the internet going down or us all dying before we can get to our iPhones.)

  3. Badly needing to exercise to alleviate brain fog. Now also craving brown saffron rice. Waiting for the chip they will graft directly into my optic nerve so I can blink the news ticker in my left eye on and off at will.

  4. Twitter is all I can handle with BREAKING ANYTHING.
    We had some good leftover indian food. I’m cold because I cut my haaaar off. We have to take Una to the vet tomorrow to see about her New Bump. So overall, pretty good but nervous. =)
    Craving GREEN SALSA.

  5. i am so tired. had guests for many days during which much fun was had but little was accomplished and i spent yesterday asleep; dreaming of returning to a regular schedule but i don’t think that’s going to happen for a while yet. on the other hand all the busy shit is in service of excellent plans. but it will be so nice to sit ass down again.

    1. at least it wasn’t Congresso
      Those soups have so much salt in them that I become a rasher of bacon when I eat them. Cannot do it any more!

      1. Re: at least it wasn’t Congresso
        I tried Congresso once and got Swine Flu. So much for the “you can’t catch it from swine” argument.
        PS — amazingly, salt is about the only thing my body does NOT react negatively to, but then again, I can’t remember the last time I actually salted anything, either — except for soup. I once made a lovely chicken soup without adding ANY salt. It smelled wonderful, lots of neat spices, and it tasted like hot dishwater :p

    1. There was an old man from Quebec
      Got buried in snow to his neck
      When asked “are you firz?”
      He replied “yes I is,
      But we don’t call THIS cold in Quebec!”

    2. Crawl, I say, CRAWL!
      I’d give my left nut for someone to sneak this in
      as a crawl on CNN-etc:
        
      George Carlin- “The Secret News”
      Here is the Secret News:
      All people are afraid
      No one knows what they’re doing.
      Everything is getting worse.
      Some people deserve to die.
      Your money is worthless.
      No one is properly dressed.
      At least one of your children will disappoint you.
      The system is rigged.
      Your house will never be completely clean.
      All teachers are incompetent.
      There are people who really dislike you.
      Nothing is as good as it seems.
      Things don’t last.
      No one is paying attention.
      The country is dying.
      God doesn’t care.
      Shhhhh.

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