Everyday, when I look through my Facebook feed for perhaps the millionth time, there is a trend that I often see.
“Yahoo! News: 5 tips for look hot for Spring Break. Yahoo! News: Mother kills 5 children. Yahoo! News: Should Your Child Be Spanked at School?”
Compared to other news sources that are shared on Facebook like the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal, Yahoo! holds a special place in teens hearts and also shows us where the world of journalism is going.
Convenience. Everyone loves something that is easily accessible with no hassle. Yahoo! has a convenient application, and once you read an article it is shared on Facebook allowing other people to easily click and access the piece. Because after all, he wants to bother reading a thick newspaper or typing in a webpage when it’s all on Facebook?
Another reason why it’s so popular among young people? In my opinion Yahoo! has an exponential amount of entertainment news. People (especially in the younger generation) are generally more interested in, “What You Should Wear This Spring,” rather than, “Another 20 People Died in Syria.” (*cough* unless it’s put into an over simplified fast-paced 30 minute video. *cough*) And if it’s not that, then we love to read the most dramatic thing like “Man Kidnaps 20 Children” or “Teacher and Student: Sex Scandal.” These kind of article are plentiful on Yahoo! and easily attract a lot of attention. After all, it is easier to feel sympathy for something happening close to us that we can understand, rather than an extended global affair that has complicated government and policy issues.
And of course, Yahoo! news is free. While newspapers that offer their articles online are having to resign to restricted page views (The New York Times is reducing its 20 articles to 10) or just flat out paid digital subscriptions, Yahoo! is free. Just a download of its Facebook application, a click here or there and you’re ready to go.
Free, easy and entertaining. These are popular themes in society today. We want something now, we want it with little hassle and you better not make us pay for it. It almost sounds like a fast-food restaurant or the convenient Wal-Mart down the block.
However. I’m not saying that Yahoo! News is bad. In fact, I applaud them for tapping into the social media web and discovering a cheap and efficient way of spreading their work. There is a lot to be said about what the average young person is interested in news wise, however.
If you are under the age of 24, can you remember what was the last news cast that you watched on the television? When was the last time you read an article from an established paper like The New York Times, Wall Street Journal or even the Des Moines Register? When was the last time you held an actual newspaper.
And really. Have you ever listened to NPR?