Everyone knows about the culture of breaking news in Pakistan, but are all the breaking news true? Does all the news that we watch or read give us the right narrative of the event? And if not, how can this affect us as a society? The society we live in, or any society in the world depends on the institutions. These institutions are the pillars of the society, which keeps the society in structure and moving.
Back in time, there were five traditional institutions of society. It was a myth that these five institutions are responsible for social patterns. These five traditional institutions were family, education, economy, government, and religion. And society was considered to be dependent on these institutions for stability and harmony.
But as time passed and society evolved, the world witnessed a major change in society after industrialization. People moved to urban areas from rural areas to find new jobs and work. The urban society provided people with new professions, in sociological terms we call it the division of labor. By the time, with new inventions, more things became important to society, and new institutions emerged.
And one of the emerging institutions was the media. Media came with its own advantages and disadvantages. Now even after years, we see the same culture here in our country. We see spreading news and fake news under the tagline of breaking news in Pakistan.
What is yellow journalism?
Yellow journalism is the concept in journalism in which the original news is fabricated with catchy headlines and exaggeration to grasp the attention of the viewer. However, the authenticity of the news is highly compromised in this process. Yellow journalism is done just for the sake of more business and ratings for the newspapers and news channels. The news is published without any proof or research, just to create a sensation among people.
This is a very harmful practice for people and as well as society, this generates massive distress and misinformation among the public. And the misinformed public cannot make an informed decision. This culture of fake news is a threat to society and it can sabotage the image of a country. In order to gain more ratings from other news channels, every news channel airs every news as breaking news in Pakistan. Just to gain the attention of people and to be the first one to break the news, they don’t bother to do the research.
Effects of yellow journalism on society
As the media is an institution of society, it has an obligation to create a sense of stability in society. But when an institution doesn’t take charge of its responsibility, it directly affects society in a very negative way. Yellow journalism or fake news does the same, it becomes a threat to society when it spreads fake news without authenticating the matter.
Showing the one side of the story is as harmful as the fake news because people build a perception on the one side of the story which can be totally wrong. We see breaking news in Pakistan or news on social media and we immediately share it from our accounts. Turns out, the story was incorrect and not completely true, it can be embarrassing for everyone who shared that and can create massive misinformation. Fake news can affect the image of a whole country.
Social media and yellow journalism
With the evolution of social media, the phenomenon of fake news also increased. It is very easy to share any news on social media without any research. Just create a page and post a news item with pictures, you can get the pictures from any site which has no link with the original event. Sometimes, the headlines and pictures are so misleading that change the whole perspective of the actual event and story.
As it is easy to post any news on social media, sharing that news is also as easy as posting that. Many people share news without authenticating it with a reliable source. We see tagline breaking news in Pakistan or the Latest news in Pakistan, and we instantly read the headline written on the post, and some people without even reading the whole post share that news. Doing this can harm your reputation around your circle.
How to spot yellow journalism
- First of all, if the news is fake or not completely true, there will be no source of the news for authentication. The original news always comes with reliable sources.
- There will be specific topics regarding politics, war, or triggering social issues to gain people’s attention and create a sensation.
- There will be an unnecessary use of pictures on the cover, which would have nothing to do with the original event.
- The exaggerated and triggering headline is one way to spot fake news.