I never watch the nightly news, not because I don’t want to be informed, but because I rebel at the notion of three samey old guys telling me what’s important and what I should think about it.  And I resent their ever-increasing use of air time in unabashed self promotion: Here’s what you missed yesterday on Survivor, here’s what’s coming tomorrow on Nightline, etc. 

But what I love about media 2.0 is its “power to the people” aspect.  With YouTube and flickr and UStream and hoards of other platforms I can find in depth info on what interests me.  I can find out what real people think about what’s happening around them.  And I can take it or leave it.  Just remember your grain of salt when you go surfing.

Here’s an example of what I love:

This summer Robb (husband) and I went to Gulfport Mississippi with an organization called Hope Crisis Response Network to work on the building and re-building of homes lost in Katrina.  Beforehand when we were explaining to our 6 and 8 year old daughters what we were doing, I pulled up mapquest and showed them where MS is in relationship to Indiana.  Then I “got directions” so I could show them how many miles and how many hours (it took a lot longer than that).  Then I pulled up flickr and typed in Katrina and got the album of a photo journalist who had been up in a helicopter shortly after the hurricane and took extensive pictures of the devastation.  So they could see for themselves how much damage there was.  And I told them that even though it’s been almost two years, so many of these people still don’t have homes to live in and isn’t it great that Daddy and I get to go down and help them?

That evening Robb and I watched people’s Katrina videos on YouTube and we heard some stories that weren’t reported in mass-media.  It made the place and especially the people more real not only for my daughters, but for us as well.

Such powerful resources at our fingertips.  What’s not to love?