Author Topic: Following a Low Information Diet  (Read 4425 times)

MgoSam

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Following a Low Information Diet
« on: October 17, 2013, 10:54:22 AM »
Hey,

I read Mr. Mustache's article on the news and completely agree. My issue is that like with a diet of fast foods, I fear that I have become addicted to it and would like to rid myself of it. Any advice?

A concern I have and I am certain that there is a rational way of addressing it is, how can I eliminate news that won't help me while at the same time being informed of the things that will? Example, is I don't need to know about the eye gouging that Mr. Mustache mentioned, but as someone that does a lot of business in China, knowing conditions there affect my job. There must be a way to balance these two. Are there any publications worth following? Right now the only news I actively pay for is the Economist and I think is excellent, do you think it is worth following?

Thanks in advance.

Thanks for all your advice!

Bruised_Pepper

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2013, 11:07:37 AM »
I believe MMM recommends the paper over TV news--you can read the business and international sections instead of watching TV, where you'll be subjected to the filler stories as well.  While finding a good, reputable source that provides only the type of news you want is good, I would be wary about getting too much information from a single source.  Their biases will eventually become your own. 

gimp

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2013, 11:17:17 AM »
Google news filters. Read only the sections you want. Business and Tech are major categories shown by default, and tech may be part of the business landscape you're interested in. In addition, you can create your own category - something like 'china business'.

Google news rocks.

TygerTung

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2013, 11:39:40 AM »
Actually I found if you cut it out completely, you will develop a very cheerful outlook on life. At the new year I decided of my own accord to avoid as much news as possible this year. One of the best things I've ever done.

MgoSam

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2013, 01:39:46 PM »
Actually I found if you cut it out completely, you will develop a very cheerful outlook on life. At the new year I decided of my own accord to avoid as much news as possible this year. One of the best things I've ever done.

I am going to try this. During the past couple of weeks I have noticed that the news has completely changed my outlook on life and ruined my mood. This also affects those that I am near. Last night was when I decided to follow this.

Thanks for the advice on Google News, I am going to tinker with it so that I can get appropriate news. For print media, I will continue to follow the Economist. If anyone has any other suggestions please feel free to let me know. I agree that following a single source of news can lead to believing that is the only point of view so a variety would be nice.

dadof4

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2013, 02:14:04 PM »
I get most of my news by watching the Daily Show...

Storypage

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2013, 03:54:36 PM »
Actually I found if you cut it out completely, you will develop a very cheerful outlook on life. At the new year I decided of my own accord to avoid as much news as possible this year. One of the best things I've ever done.

Ditto. I scan the Google headlines, but rarely read anything. It seems I am able to keep up with the things that are important to me, anyway.

I have never read 7 Habits, but I have been actually doing this for a couple of years. I prefer to focus on things I can actually do something about. For instance, humane treatment of animals and the environment. I can't fix the big picture, but I can contribute through raising animals sustainably. I could wring my hands about all the things that aren't being done, but that just wears me out. It is more effective to find something I can do, and just do it.

I enjoyed this blog post more than any for a long time.


NinetyFour

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #7 on: October 17, 2013, 05:00:19 PM »
I have no TV, but I occasionally (maybe once per month) watch the PBS Newhour and (maybe every other week) watch PBS's Washington Week online.  They are both great.

I frequently look at the NYT online.  I sometimes look at the WaPo, but rarely click on their articles.

I often stream the BBC World News, but I have recently cut back on that and have been listening to music instead.

Big change recently for me--I have completely cut out NPR.  Compared to the BBC, it is often silly and has too many stories about the latest apps and other tech gadgets that "everybody has".  Yuck.  (Also, the clarinets during All Things Considered made me leap up and smack the radio.)

I should listen to Democracy Now! more often than I do.  I love Amy Goodman.

Even more, I love Harry Shearer, and listen to his weekly show (Le Show) without fail.

Noodle

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #8 on: October 17, 2013, 07:25:25 PM »
I follow the local news from two different cities by subscribing to the RSS feeds of the local section of the newspaper websites. I skim all the headlines and click on maybe 10%. That seems to be enough to catch most of the major local events with relatively little effect on my mood (of course, I also find my state politics hilarious, whereas they drive some people up the wall). I also have an app from the local TV news station on my phone with alerts for traffic and weather events, which are both pretty handy. My former city had a neighborhood blog that was terrific for things like "why was that fire truck parked in front of the library? What's going into that old restaurant?) but sadly my new city doesn't seem to have anything like that.

alexan

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Re: Following a Low Information Diet
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2013, 03:08:11 PM »
I started doing this recently at the suggestion of another blogger. I used to listen to NPR on the way to and from work. While I love NPR, there's nothing that raises my blood pressure like listening to stories about things like war and politics while sitting in already frustrating traffic. I've been listening to audio books from my local library instead. I'll tune in to the news about once every two weeks during the awkward bit where I've finished but not yet traded a book in for the next one. My girlfriend listens to a BBC podcast around the apartment. Between catching snippets of that, hearing other peoples' conversations, and my once every two week indulgence, I feel I keep about as informed as I want to be without wasting much mental energy or stress on it. Just my take.