When you are developing your character, it is important to seek out knowledge and guidance but there are issues that can arise from this. It is important to stop and think about your sources and how reliable they are. Ask yourself where is this information coming from? Is it a reliable source? Is the information based on opinion or fact and where are these facts coming from? Is there bias and what is the hidden agenda of the bias? Incorrect or biased information can misguide you and lead you to make mistakes and bad decisions so it is important to place your trust in the right sources and always be questioning.
In the next couple of blogs we will be looking at different resources that are used by people to gain information. To start with we look at television. When watching TV we assume we know the difference between the fiction and the nonfiction but it is much more complex.
Most people turn to the news as a source of information but different news stations present the same stories in different ways. As an exercise why not watch the news headlines for the same day and see how the same story is altered from the 6 o’clock news on the BBC to the 10 o’clock news on channel 4. What kind of differences do you notice and what do you think these differences signify. Sometimes the images shown in the news are affected by the water shed or in other cases the news reflects a more left wing or right wing attitude.
Politics and the media together have been shown to have a difficult untrustworthy and biased relationship. An example of this is Rupert Murdock and his vast media empire. In the 1980’s he formed an alliance with Margaret Thatcher and in later years his paper the sun was credited for supporting her predecessor. In more recent times Murdoch has been accused of bribery corruption and the phone hacking scandal. Given that he owns so many news outlets it is important to recognise that even information presented as unbiased and factual can have deep hidden agendas. Always look behind the source to see who owns the information or even who they are sponsored by as these factors create bias.
Most sources will have a bias of some kind even if it is very slight. It is important to dissect the material and research it and judge for yourself if you find the source trustworthy. Look at both points of view, look at the evidences presented, and read beneath the lines before you make a judgement. There is vast amount of information however the information is not always from reliable sources and aims to direct your mind to believe certain points made. Many of you may think after reading this, i can still look at information on T.V. and make my own judgement as i know what is right and what is not. However why don’t you try looking at negative news on a particular issue or particular group which is on the news continuously, will you not make a judgement in your mind no matter how positive you was feeling before the news? The news is feeding you and you’re getting fed why don’t you feed yourself with what is right, not what is forced upon you?