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MAIL OPINION  By Shana Kongmun


Is it really bad news all the time?

I had someone ask me how it is to be a news editor and how it must be all bad news all the time. I answered that I edited a local newspaper and one in Chiang Mai at that. Occasionally something really awful does happen here, it is true, and I find those stories very upsetting. But, truth be told, Chiang Mai is, compared to many other places, even those in Thailand, a relatively peaceful place to live.

Many people have commented that the world is worse now than it has ever been. I suspect that those who lived through World War I and World War II might disagree with that assessment. The real issue here is, I believe, not that the world is a worse place but rather that we get to hear about absolutely everything. With the internet, social media and 24 hour news channels it is all bad news all the time. Rarely do they focus on the good news and with the frenzy that often accompanies trending stories, it begins to feel like society and the world as a whole is simply collapsing.

Historically, if we look back, though, horrendous things have happened throughout human history. Even recent history in our region gives us the genocide of Pol Pot, something that is as equally horrendous as anything that is going on today. The difference lies in the fact that we are inundated with news and that we hear news from areas that would have only seen news trickle out years ago.

It is important to stay informed but to also keep things in perspective and try to read some good news while you are at it. Balance the negativity with something positive, probably something you should do with every day life as well.

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Is it really bad news all the time?