My News Reading Habits

September 16th, 2021

Studying journalism does not only improve my writing skills, but it also helps establish some good reading habits. All of my reading outside of school is done online and if I am reading something it is typically news related. Local, state and federal politics interests me and that is what led me to my minor – political science. It is important for me to stay on top of local and national news.

I usually seek out news from McHenry County, Chicago and Illinois. If it is on a national level it basically gets thrown at me on every social media platform and my understanding of issues or events usually starts there. I especially like my local newspaper, the Northwest Herald, because they report on things happening in neighborhoods and communities that I can physically see and therefore understand better. I also interned for them so it has a special place in my heart. 

I did not read much about my hometown before then but as I was reporting for them, I realized people really care about what happens in their homes. It is more personal and because of that, it is more engaging. That is exactly my reason for reading it now. 

Other than the Northwest Herald, I will also seek news from the New York Times, BBC, NBC, NBC Chicago and Chicago Tribune. My favorite would have to be NBC Chicago or the Tribune. Again, I like to stay up to date about local news and although I do not live in Chicago it is a major city close to my hometown and a lot more happens there than in Wonder Lake. 

When I am searching for news I always use Google as a starting point. Typically if there is a video I will lean more towards that but there is always more detail in text.

I have also become a podcast listener. I like daily national news like NPR’s First Up but I also like podcasts that dive into larger issues. I try to listen to everyone across the aisle and I find that podcasts are the most enjoyable way to do that. 

I think podcasts are my favorite way to get news. It is easier and more convenient. I can do other things while I listen, which is pretty neat. 

I follow a few news sites through their social media as well but that is as far as my interaction goes. I do not ever comment on a post or anything of that sort and I think maybe it is just me taking my future career too seriously but I don’t think it is my job to tell others what I think. I listen or read and report. 

Although, I have submitted a video for Chicago Today that was to help a fellow intern. It sure was cool seeing myself on television either way! 

The social media that leads me to news is Twitter. I am not a fan of Facebook. I do not use it that often, it just feels like everyone is on a constant rant. I follow a good amount of news sources so I guess it does not really “lead” me to the news. I mostly asked for it. My Twitter friends tweet non-news-related things, but every now and then I will see something about an issue they care about, but it doesn’t ever lead me to news sites. 

Like mentioned earlier, I try to find news sources from both sides. This helps in making sure what I read is accurate. For example, I have both CNN and FOX downloaded on my phone. It Is important to me to know what everyone is talking about and if what they are saying is true.

While interning with NBC Chicago, officer Ella French was killed during a traffic stop. There were rumors going around that she was married and had a newborn. I can’t remember if this was something I saw on social media or a news outlet but everyone believed it and it was not true. Sometimes you just have to go directly to the source.

I watched a lot of the Chicago Police Department’s news conferences and I encourage you all to do the same whenever you can. Turned out she was not married or had children. It was a horrible situation either way. That is just one example of how news can get mixed up and double-checking will only help you be more informed.

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