The other day, I was poking around on The Guardian‘s website (a British national paper), and I found myself looking twice at the headlines. Prominently displayed on the website so that it’s the first thing a reader sees was an article called something along the lines of “Ten Things I Learned at the Comic-Con.” Lest you think that ‘comic-con’ has some greater implication over the pond than it does here, let me tell you it does not. The article was indeed about the annual San Diego geekfest.

I thought, “Wow. The Guardian‘s webmaster thinks the British reading public would be more interested how many nerdy Americans dressed up as Wonder Woman than, say, Obama’s latest speech about the debt crisis (which, surprisingly, had the third slot).

Not that I’m any way bashing the intelletual abilities or tastes of the British (or the Comic-Con, for that matter: hey, if I had a few hundred bucks to blow I’d be there too. But I wouldn’t dress up as Wonder Woman). By way of comparison, that same day The Los Angeles Times website had a conspicuously placed article about the largest baby born in Texas. To be brutally honest, the Comic-Con is probably more important and influential than a 16-pound infant. Yeah, so Americans–or at least Angelenos–might be lagging behind the British.

Still, the experience made me stop and think. What are the headlines in my mind? If someone ranked my thoughts by ‘most viewed’ or ‘this just in’, what would they see?

Huh.

Kinda sobering, isn’t?

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6 responses »

  1. I know right… makes me wonder why we spent so much time on Casey Anthony instead of the national debt. hehe, it’s hard because there’s a conflict between what’s news, and then what people want to hear. We talked about this a bit in J-class: People don’t really want to hear about politics, even if they need too; they have itching ears for infotainment these days. 😛

  2. Ditto beautifulordinary. We’re watching Roman Holiday right now, and that’s kind of a classic case, imho. Who cares about celebrities/princesses?

  3. Yes, and I’ll just sit here quietly and pretend I know what Roman Holiday has to with it :).

  4. but she hits the dude over the head with a guitar! … if that isn’t awesome epicness I don’t know what is. lol. but yeah, i really don’t see why that’s news. but it’s news cuz people read it. cuz it’s odd. man bites dog type stuff sells, whether or not it’s actually valuable….

  5. Nathan says:

    I think it’s interesting that the 3 articles mentioned in this British paper are all about news in other countries. I also like your musing about our mental headlines. Do we just think about pointless “news” or do we think about subjects with depth and significance? Good question….

    • Yes, I noticed that too. None of the three most important stories are actually about Britain. Out of curiosity, I just checked the headlines again. The third story is about a protest in Syria, the second is about yet another Obama announcement, and the first? The first is about a French actress’s fight with a French actor. Interesting. . .

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