A Personal Glimpse


I’ve taken to a very cynical view of the internet lately. Everything is based on the concept of “click-bait”. Click here to read about the heartwarming story about this. Click on this to be enraged about the government doing this. Click here to read an article about an author behaving badly. The heartwarming story? Hoax. The government thing? Fear mongering. Author behaving badly? I am now beginning to think it was a manufactured publicity stunt. Objective reporting of the news is such a thing of the past that you can’t trust the headlines anymore because they are meant for you to CLICK on them. Draw you in. Click-bait.

It’s been happening more and more recently. One source breaks out with a story and it spreads like wildfire to other news sources. Not because it has been confirmed as true and accurate but because those other news sites want those clicks too. Who cares if it turns out to be false? Who cares about integrity? Get the clicks! Lure the people in and get the traffic directed to your site. Click-bait. And that sloppy reporting even spills out on the TV news.

I’ve stopped watching and trying to stay current with the news altogether (though I love me some Jon Stewart, sigh, he’s my last link to the madness). Why? Because I don’t believe anyone anymore. I just don’t. Nothing is objective. Everything is spin. It’s all click-bait. Any story on the internet that I read, I automatically believe has been fabricated to illicit a specific response from me. It is all designed to make me feel a certain way, and I just want to know what is real life and what is fantasy. The internet has blurred that and reduced the importance of reality all in favor of Clicking and Sharing.

With everything expanding to be so global now, all info at our fingertips, arguing in the comments sections over the strangest things with people around the world, being led by puppet master corporations, the only way to survive intact is to be reduced to a 19th century mentality. Trust only what is in front on you, what is in your town. What you hear from your neighbor’s lips about the local school changes. What your co-workers say about the town politics. Keep everything so local level that there is no longer an outside world. Because it is all fake.

Let me ask you this… would historians even know how to write about this time period say 200 years from now? Or would they write it as “creative non-fiction” which can blur that line between fact and fiction, as long as it makes it more readable…or clickable?

© Dana Rothstein | Dreamstime Stock Photo
© Dana Rothstein | Dreamstime Stock Photo

2 thoughts on “Click-Bait”

  1. I think there has always been this level of sensationalism in the news, but rather than clicking a headline you had to flip pages of the papers.
    Maybe it’s more crass reporting now, but there have always been lies. As to what historians will report from today will be the same as always – whomever ends up in power ultimately will dictate what’s reported on at the time. Could be worse then, who knows. It sucks today regardless and I’m totally with you on not bothering with news…it’s all trash anymore.


    1. Very valid point about history. I guess that part is never to be changed no matter what time period we are in, nor the technology we use. Or how “enlightened” we seem to think ourselves.

      True there has always been sensationalism in the news, ever since you had to pay for newspapers, but it just seems to me like the media keep ratcheting it a notch higher and higher. Maybe my cynicism is really just emotional fatigue. I don’t want to get angry anymore. I don’t want to be manipulated to stressful levels of emotion due to predictable knee-jerk reactions. Will the rest of the internet follow suit (except those people who live for drama)? Will this sort of bubble burst and how? What will corporations resort to click-bait us with when we become so tired of shouting our comments at each other in arguments never won?

      It just makes me so sad, that’s all. Because it isn’t over anything real.


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