I have found myself the last couple of days devastated by the news unfolding in our country and around the world. Tonight I saw something I never had seen before on the news, a live feed of Turkey under an attempted military coup read. I have heard of a coup before, but never have I witnessed multiple live feeds of one occurring.
24-hour news agencies have scrambled to bring in reporters, paid experts, ex-military this and ex-super important person that. As an audience member, it is dangerous to imagine how many people are not thinking about what they are seeing critically. Emotions are high and within several minutes of watching I witnessed several mis-steps that made me aware of how access to information in the moment has forced ourselves to develop a stronger critical perspective.
When I watched there were no reporters commentating live on the scene, just cameras with audio. The world was watching when civilians were scrambling to figure out what was happening in their own country. Of all of the possibilities flying around, at no time did any of the media said that they didn’t know what was happening for sure…which was actually the entire reality of the situation.
The outcome couldn’t be found with a Google search or the shake of a magic eight-ball. Some of what was reported was true, some of what was said made sense, but the combination of everything points to the need for the viewer to be critical, not to just sit back and be told what they are seeing.