Lab Report: Quitting the News

“If you get your view of the world from the news, you’re always going to think that we’re living in violent times.”

– Steven Pinker

What’s the message of the mainstream media? Be afraid! Stay inside! Out there are Isis, the 1% staling your money and clowns! No wonder we feel anxious and afraid even though we live in the safest era in human history.


The Lab Report – 006 – “Quit the News”

I stopped following the news about 3 years ago. I don’t read any newspapers, I don’t listen to the radio and I don’t follow any blogs or news feeds.

How has this experiment pan out?


Short term effects: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

– “Fear of Missing Out” might haunt you in the beginning – don’t worry, if it’s important (most news aren’t) you will hear about it.

– Fearmonger stories triggers stress and spikes your cortisol. Without these spikes you can enjoy a stronger immune system.


Long term effects: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

– Reduced fear and anxiety.

– Less drama, more focus.

– The media is experts at masking us feel concerned. Being concerned makes us feel like we are doing something while we’re not. Now you freed up time to do shit.


Sustainability: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

– You might work at a job where you’re unable to control news exposure i.e a places where TVs and radios on all the time.

– Social media feeds can be challenging to manage. I solved it by not looking at social media feeds.

– Ones your out off it, and if you pay attention to the positive effects, then it’s very hard to relapse.


FINAL VERDICT: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Quitting the news is the closest thing I’ve found to a silver bullet for improved happiness and inner peace. 👌🏻 ☯️

Of course you should not take my word for it. Think for yourself. And also -what is the counter argument to what I just said? 🧐 🤔

You Find More Lab Reports and Experiments Here!

The Bible of Fake News. Thoughts on “Trust me, I’m Lying”.


This book left me humbled. I thought I was on top of my media game and was able to separate the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. I was wrong.

I knew the situation was bad, I even quit following “the news” 3 years ago because I thought it misrepresented reality to a larger degree than it represented it (and for the sake of my own my wellbeing), but Ryan Holidays confessions from his career as a media manipulator paints a darker picture than I could ever imagine.

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📝 The constraints of blogging create artificial content (shamings, planted stories, sensational speculations etc..), which is made real and impacts the outcome of real world events.

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📝 Trading up the chain: How to turn nothing into something! Send stories to small traffic hungry blogs with non-existing editorial standards and have them being picked up by bigger and bigger outlets until your fabricated story is national news.

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📝 “The world is boring, but the news is exciting. It’s a paradox of modern life.”

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📝 Top stories all polarize people. Threaten peoples belonging, belief or behavior and you will have a hit that will spreads!

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📝 The economics of the web has made it impossible to portray the complex situation of Detroit accurately. Photographs of abandoned houses was shared like crazy while photos of the same houses with it’s despairing residents included was “too sad to share”, creating less incentive for media. Simple narratives > complex realities.

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📝 On User Engagement: Provoke a person enough for them to be motivated to leave a comment. In the process of registering to be eligible to comment, a user has to go through up to 10 pageviews. That’s a lot of ads (and ad revenue!).

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⭐️ TAKEAWAY:

Sensational and fearmongering headlines has always made me sad. Understanding the structure and constraints of click-based media is essential. These structure explains almost everything they do. It’s the nature of the system.

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4/5

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