I realize that recently I’ve all but stopped consuming time-sensitive media. That is, things that are designed to be consumed at a certain time. The nightly news. Daily radio shows. The town crier, I suppose.
And funny, I don’t miss it.
I think partly I’m relieved to not be subjected to nearly as much fear and sensationalism. In order to get anyone to pay attention, these information sources necessarily have to create a sense of urgency and panic about their message. Otherwise, no one would feel compelled to pay attention at all…like I don’t these days.
I do get alerts to my phone if there’s big breaking news (earthquakes, wars), and I will watch big sporting events and live TV events in order to be able to participate in discussions with my friends about them. But beyond that, I just queue up immense amounts of media, some current, some not, and go through at my own pace, not terribly worried about when it was created, and not feeling guilty that I’m enjoying yesterday’s information while today’s information is becoming available.
There’s always great timeless material out there. Most great books, classics and contemporary, are just as relevant tomorrow as today, as are most movies. Blogs are archived in perpetuity, and their authors actually adore visitors going back to read through the best of their archives. And weekly news magazines have a much more balanced view of world events, having had time to digest important news and to deliver much greater value to you as you consume it.
Don’t let nightly news (or Twitter) make you feel like you’re missing something critical if you aren’t constantly paying attention to what’s happening this very second. The important stuff will find its way to you, and it’s a giant relief to comfortably ignore the inconsequential bulk of it all.