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News Menopause

by Ron Holdraker
November 13, 2021

Definition:

News Menopause is the time that marks the end of your loyalty to news cycles.

It occurs at any age, but now is centered on both Millennial and Baby Boomers.

No, it is not necessarily a natural process, but quickened by the introduction of the Internet.

Symptoms: Hot flashes of confusion and anger.

It started when electronic media began usurping newspapers. A radio in every home grew into TVs in every room. Little by little, people wanted their news faster, more condensed, perhaps with a bit of snarky opinion thrown in to lead to a conclusion.

Ahh, then came the Internet, followed quickly with myriad social media sites that would expand and blow our minds in ways no one could imagine. “What? ! I could become part of the news by giving my two cents?”

Of course, in doing so audiences would have to do less thinking, and have their minds swayed in ways no one could envision.

Newspapers, not able to handle those who gave up on reading, decided to stay in their same old stodgy formats, hoping beyond hope to survive on picked-over news stories. “There is nothing to see her folks, just keep on moving along”.

Cable news all but replaced the ‘Nightly News’, and Walter Cronkite died anyway.

News hounds became news puppies as news became flash points for directing which way society would move. “Fight for the right...Fight for the left, stand up fight, fight, fight!”

Pretty soon the rhetoric replaced factual and nobody was happy with news. Opinion became facts as any idiot with an axe to grind became newsworthy.

Meanwhile newspapers declined faster and faster. If you can’t beat em’. quit, became the mold. Frank Gannett,   Newhouse, Hearst all began rolling over in their respective news graves. Nobody even cared about what was behind “Rosebud’. (An old movie reference that most today would not understand. Besides, the movie it is in black and white with no car crashes.)

But wait! We still have radio...Nope that is most definitely on the slide. We have tons of cable and the old stodgy networks and prime time news.

Nope, that too is in decline, shattered by more diverse cable offerings. Recent ratings show the likes of Fox, CNN, along with the others are all in steep dives in ratings. Seems division has fractured all news.

Now, more than yesterday, social media is the place to go. Yes, the truth has been defined by what you read (usually in some sort of abbreviation) today... no... last hour. Hey, let’s throw in some random poll to lead you by your nose into the near future.

I was told some 30 plus years ago that newspaper was a dying media. One local dignitary at the time said the Times would not last beyond six months. He is long gone, yet we are still here.

Yes, we have expanded to an online presence - necessary in today’s world, but we are still here.

News Menopause may lead to the time that marks the end of your loyalty to news cycles, but we are still in the cycle, race. Yes, most newspapers decline to little more than dust and memories, but we are still here.

Probably because I am stubborn, I won’t retire. I cause controversy, reject  many social standards that lead to pablum. For those refusing to understand the term: Pablum is a noun referring to ideas, speech, writing, or other media that are bland or simplistic or that lack any real intellectual substance or value .

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