Breaking News? More Like Breaking Down Society’s Mental State

Every time we turn on the TV, check our phones, or go online we are bombarded with breaking news about shootings, plane crashes, terrorist attacks, and crimes. Studies show that this constant feed of violence can lead to this generation becoming numb to brutality and can even lead to larger mental health issues. Society can make strides to resolve this issue by filtering what they read or watch.  

A new Nielsean Company report reveals that, “Adults in the United States devoted about 10 hours and 39 minutes each day to consuming media during the first quarter of this year.”

All of this screen time has an effect on the human mind, whether good or bad. However, with a 92% percent increase of violence on television (Parents Television Council) the effects seem to be more negative than positive.  

According to study by Brad Bushman and Craig Anderson, “Exposure to gratuitous violence in the media reduces the aid offered to people in pain.”

In the study, those who saw a violent image online took longer to help an injured victim, rated a fight as less serious, and were less likely to “hear” the fight in comparison to participants who did not see the violent image.

As seen in the research, the increase of violence in the media is dangerous and can be a factor in the mental health of society. But, unless this issue is solved the next generation will be subject to increased mental illness, violence and suicides.

The one solution to this problem is simply for the media companies to focus on reporting uplifting things that will cause change in the world and in people’s minds.

The website writes constructive stories that bring attention to imporant issues while still including some fun content. This way people are still informed about the world around them, but they do not have to be subject to negative material.

Also, the Huffington Post’s Good News section has grown 45 percent this year, and the positive content on the Huffington Post’s website is “shared three times more on HuffPost than the combined average of all our other sections’ share rate,” says the Huffington Post’s editor-in-chief Arianna Huffington.

While there will always be violence in the news consumers can play their part by actively choosing to pay attention to it or not. If just a few people this step towards change, the world will become a more positive place.