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It's Not News, It's Fark: How Mass Media…
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It's Not News, It's Fark: How Mass Media Tries to Pass Off Crap As News (edition 2007)

by Drew Curtis

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222852,362 (3.73)5
Member:mfagan
Title:It's Not News, It's Fark: How Mass Media Tries to Pass Off Crap As News
Authors:Drew Curtis
Info:Gotham (2007), Edition: DIAF, Hardcover, 288 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:****1/2
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It's Not News, It's Fark: How Mass Media Tries to Pass Off Crap As News by Drew Curtis

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Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
What a fantastic, eye-opening, revealing, hilarious exposé on mass media! Curtis, as a result of his proprietorship of Fark.com is the single person most qualified to opine on this subject, and he does so with aplomb, blowing the lid off the machinations of the media and why they function the way they do. This book provided a valuable service for me. It happens often that a certain detail of humanity drives me nuts, and I read a book that explains the phenomenon in detail and puts me at ease. The first time this happened was when vehicular traffic and the fact that three buses show up at my stop at the same time. I read a book called "Why Buses Come in Threes" and laid these matters to rest for me. I then found myself railing against non-news items and am fully assuaged with the reading of this book. Now irrational human behavior still drives me nuts, so I'll be reading Dan Ariely's "Predictably Irrational" in the hopes of laying that to rest as well. Anyway, I had slacked off my Fark.com readership of late, but now I'm back, oh yes, way back, and I'm loving it.
  MartinBodek | Jun 11, 2015 |
This is another one of those books that I initially loved, but over time, my feelings have softened up toward it. However, I think that this has a lot of good points to make about Mass Media in today’s world, and it’s still pretty good.

Curtis’s main argument is that there’s really not a lot of ‘important’ news that takes up media space, particularly when there’s not real news going on. Most of the non-news can go in one of several categories (all of which get their own chapter) with several examples proving the point. While Curtis says that he’s not a trained journalist, I do actually agree with a lot that he mentions. He does say that what he’s talking about shouldn’t apply to hard-hitting news, but a lot of the fluff pieces to eat up time. My one big nitpick is the inclusion of Fark comments at the end of each example article. They’re funny, but a lot of the included comments have the feel of “You had to be there” and jolts the reader out of the point for the respective chapter. Overall, decent read, would recommend for newshounds.
( )
  princess-starr | Mar 31, 2013 |
I've heard of Fark but never visited it. This was loaned to us because my boyfriend works in local news. He hasn't had a chance to read it yet but I really enjoyed it. The "most news is crap" message wasn't exactly surprising or controversial, but it was interesting to see it divided into clear recurring themes. And his analysis and suggestions at the end about how to stay viable made a lot of sense. Most of the funniest bits were in the comments. Which I thus felt a little guilty about laughing at because mouthbreathing comment sections are a major reason I don't get much news online. But there are some gems here. ( )
1 vote kristenn | Jan 10, 2010 |
Very funny, very scary. News at its worst. ( )
  mcandre | Nov 1, 2009 |
Good media critique. ( )
  sachachua | Sep 6, 2009 |
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To Heather, without whom I wouldn't be able to keep my detail stuff straight. Thanks for running interference so I had time to finish the book. All my love.

To Storm, who was very patient through this process, sitting in my chair and waiting until I was done so we could play with trains.

To Chance, who moved in suddenly during the tail end of the process and basically just sat around eating, sleeping, and pooping. Here's hoping that behavior doesn't repeat when you graduate college in 22 years.
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Fark is what fills space when Mass Media runs out of news.
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While comedy shows report funny fake news, Fark.com features funny real news. On slow news days, mainstream media still has to deliver. Fark founder Drew Curtis has noticed several distinct patterns used to turn non-news into the news you see each day. These include: fear-mongering in the absence of facts; the bogus press release, which states a new finding but fails to explain where the numbers came from; media fatigue, when the media exhaust every angle of an existing story rather than digging for something new; and the coverage given to such events as brides who don't want to get married, fake their own kidnapping, and escape cross-country. Such non-news should appear only once, if at all, in mainstream media. So why are we overexposed to such schlock from legitimate news outlets?--From publisher description.… (more)

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