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Broadcast media around Cyclone Yasi

February 2, 2011

I want to comment on the media we broadcast around events like Cyclone Yasi, to offer a perspective and then open it to discussion on the floor.

Here’s my view. There’s a great nasty cyclone that’s stirred itself up in the ocean and is heading in the direction of a populated area. It’s big so, for those in the way it’s terrifying and for everyone else it’s a morbid fascination. Reading, watching and listening to the reports that are broadcast makes it look like the greatest horror movie you’ll ever see. Get your popcorn and prepare to watch the bodies, cars and buildings fly.

Yes, it looks like it’s going to be an awful disaster but in no report will you see any prospect of an alternative ending. They won’t tell you it could change direction, they won’t tell you it could shrink in size. It’s always the worst possible scenario because, as the news people know, that is more exciting and more likely to get you to tune into the news.

I’m very much a follower of the Law of Attraction and see evidence of my efforts in every aspect of my life. If more people knew how to use it to an advantage, what a different world we would live in.

The theory goes:
What we focus on gets stronger.
What we focus on we will more likely see evidence of in the future.

Has anybody stopped to wonder how all this “disaster” media is affecting the world consciousness? How it might be focussing the whole world’s energy into the worst possible outcome and making it all the more likely?

Locally for me in Sydney Australia we saw a news bulletin a few years back about a racist fight that had ballooned into the possibility of a riot in Cronulla. I was amazed to see the 6 o’clock news every night, starting Monday that week, talking about how there was going to be a riot on Saturday. I believe their focus made this riot FAR bigger than what it would have been had they not kept reporting it. People turned up in their thousands on Saturday. Some came to watch the action. Some to just have an excuse to punch someone they were unlikely to be held accountable to. The 6 o’clock news literally advertised the event, brought it into focus not just in the people that showed up at the beach that day but also in the minds of many thousands of Australians in their homes who feared the consequences or were hungry to see something real and exciting on the TV.

I understand the Cronulla riot was a human engineered disaster but what if the theory applies to natural disasters as well? When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, the same thing happened. How many hours of media coverage over 6 days were sent out beforehand expecting the worst? The cyclone continued on it’s path and grew bigger. Is it possible the world’s focus on it along with the emotions of fear, worry, fascination and excitement had an impact on the outcome?

If so, what can we do in the media to change this approach? I agree, the people who appear to be in the places likely to be hit need to know about it. What about the rest of us who don’t live there though? Could we change the way the news is Broadcast outside the local target area to give more possible endings to the story, so you come away with the feeling of hope? Of being able to imagine there is another way this could end? That it might change direction, head back out to sea and run out of puff?

When more of us understand the connection between what we choose to focus our thoughts on and the powerful influence it can have on the result, we may consciously decide to put our own efforts into steering disasters towards a happier ending. When the world focusses on THAT ending, Law of Attraction says we may be able to make a difference.

Your thoughts?

6 Comments leave one →
  1. February 2, 2011 6:09 pm

    I have to agree with this. I know focus makes things happen – and all these people doing just that . . almost willing it!? Its something the media needs alerting to – but its an entire ethical change and who would implement it and who would be the arbitrator – its quite a can of worms, but worthwhile. How does anyone begin addressing this to anyone that can implement it?

  2. February 2, 2011 8:25 pm

    How irresponsible to suggest that the media should be promoting cyclone scenarios that are not realistic just so that you can feel hopeful while you sit comfortably safe in Sydney. The media has not created this disaster, our attention has not made this cyclone bigger. Media coverage, and in particular social media, has ensured that people have been well prepared and stayed safe during the disastrous floods here and hopefully will do the same for those in the path of the cyclone tonight. It is ignorant to suggest that unless you are directly impacted you don’t need to know what is really going on and disingenuous to equate the Cronulla riots with a natural disaster of this magnitude. Send all the good wishes you want, as I will do also. I will also choose to keep myself well informed with the reality of the situation.

  3. Beechmere permalink
    February 2, 2011 11:08 pm

    Unfortunately, positive thinking won’t turn the cyclone back any more than sincere prayer. For those of us here away from the damger, feel free to use either method. But the media, to their credit, are also showing the locals making preparations, sandbagging, boarding up windows, securing loose items, and evacuating where possible. These people don’t have time to think away the danger. They’re doing the best they can, and they know they’ll get help later from the rest of when they need it.

  4. February 14, 2011 9:10 pm

    I was really interested to read what you said here and although I have had similar thoughts on the Law of Attraction, the first thing I said to my daughter the following morning in response to the news that the cyclone did not do anywhere the anticipated damage was “there is the proof of the power of prayer”. I believed (and still do) that so many people from all over the country were fervently hoping and praying in whatever fashion they are comfortable with for the safety of those in the way the cyclone that it directly attributed to the lessened destruction. What I noticed was how it seemed to miss the greatest number of people of hit the plantations instead. Was nobody praying for the bananas?

  5. February 16, 2011 12:54 pm

    Hi there,
    I read a fabulous book by scientist Gregg Braden on the subject of 2012 called Fractal Time.

    Matching his studies of various ancient civilisations with the latest scientific research he shows the cycle of extreme weather, global warming and people generally becoming detached from their spirituality (getting into wars etc) comes in a 5000 year cycle (roughly).
    Yes, we do need to take steps to preserve our planet but much of the unrest may settle down in the next 10-20 years as we pass into the new age naturally, according to his conclusions.
    So the term “end of our time” also means the beginning of a new time.
    It’s a great read and I highly recommend it.


  1. is 2012 real?

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