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News: Wonderful, woeful or weird

By Kay S. Pedrotti In my many years in the newspaper business, the question folks ask me most frequently has been, ‘Why do newspapers just print the bad stuff?’ That’s usually followed by an appeal for ‘more good news.’ I don’t have a standard 25-word answer for the concern about ‘only bad news,’ but I do have some beliefs and truisms collected in a long career. First I need to say if you think all newspapers print is the bad news, you aren’t reading them. Or maybe your interpretation of bad news may be skewed. Newspapers report murders, rapes, burglaries and other criminal activities for two reasons: these acts are out of the norm for the majority of the population and therefore constitute ‘news.’ Second, you need to know if there are threats to your life, family or property.

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