In a media landscape where network and cable news viewership is plummeting while new media is on the rise, a Monmouth Poll released Monday found the majority of Americans now receive most of their news from the deepest recesses of their subconscious minds.
According to the poll, the swirling cauldron of news consumers’ visceral fears is capturing an ever-larger share of a market previously dominated by traditional news sources.
“When I want the news I close my eyes and let my reptilian brain’s ancient prejudices and blood-thirsty quest for survival deliver all the news and information I need to start my day,” said Baltimore-area teacher Mark Hurst, 29. “It’s more convenient than the car radio.”
Out of the 2 million American citizens surveyed, an overwhelming 27 percent said they trust the swirling eddy of constant, abject panic inside them to stay on top of current events. Thirty-two percent report relying on their bare-knuckled fight-or-flight stress response to keep them informed. Nearly 40 percent trust night terrors.
“It’s important for me to be caught up on the news,” said homemaker Karen Arbeson, 38. “I get all the news I need by waking up in the middle of the night, sitting up bolt-straight, and issuing a prolonged, inhuman shriek.”
This transformation of the nation’s news landscape has already taken a heavy toll on old-media outlets such as newspapers, magazines and broadcast TV. Some news editors are hoping to tap into the bleak morass of indescribable horror before they lose more marketshare.
“We’ve put more resources into covering the black cyclone of despair and anxiety that consumes our souls,” said CBS News president David Rhodes. “It is an unholy specter of death that looms over humanity, and it will consume us, one and all.”