Hans Rosling, of Gapminder.org, gives some perspective to the recent H1N1 outbreak:
Put simply: over 13 days, 31 people died from H1N1. During those same 13 days, over 60,000 people died of TB. I’ll let you guess which disease got over 38x more coverage in the news.*
It’s all about context. Without it, anything can be portrayed as a crisis. Without it, we can let what truly matters slip through our fingers.
*As represented by Google news search returns.
Gets back to Bruce Schneier’s point: if it’s in the news, it is more or less by definition something out of the ordinary. No newspaper puts “1700 MORE PEOPLE DIE OF HEART DISEASE” on page 1, but that’s how many people it kills every day.
Honestly, I think not reading the news would be a good idea. Or at least reading it and filtering the vast majority of it out.
Wow, that is a very interesting fact. What news paper was that in?
Leave a comment