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Why is the News Media Obsessed with the Jodi Arias Trial?

Posted on the 02 May 2013 by Real Talk @talkrealdebate2012

Jodi AriasChances are if you follow the news even a tad bit you’ve heard of the Jodi Arias trial.  Jodi is on trial for killing her boyfriend.  After changing her story several times she now maintains she killed him in self-defense.  Today supposedly was the last day of testimony before the jury.  The four-month trial has dragged on and has been extensively covered in the news media, both on television and in print.  The amount of coverage this trial has received is utterly perplexing.  I really don’t understand why the media is obsessed with this trial.  I don’t understand how this could legitimately be a national story to report.

I should be upfront and state that I have largely ignored the coverage of this trial.  I’ve actually internally debated if I should even post anything on this trial.  I hadn’t previously posted anything because I didn’t want to give this anymore attention than it already has attained.  I am in fact still debating if I should even post this.  I decided I would only bring this topic up so I could more largely discuss the sometimes narrowness news journalism exhibit.  Many journalists focus on one event they personally find fascinating and then focus on it until its conclusion.  

Jodi Arias isn’t a celebrity.  She is on trial for killing her boyfriend.  I don’t know her or the deceased.  Before this trial she wasn’t well-known.  The media attention this trial has received would make a novice believe there isn’t much else going on in the country.  If I wanted to research I could list hundreds if not thousands of similar cases.  What makes this case anymore intriguing?

What frustrates me about this coverage is that it distracts from more important news stories.  It demeans the social platform and shrinks the time that could be allotted to other topics.  For example, I think it’s pretty ridiculous this trial has received more attention in one day than the Gosnell trial has in totality.

It also irritates me that Americans are more aware of this trial than the recent teenage suicides.  I wonder how many times Rehtaeh Parsons was mentioned in the media in comparison to this trial.  Or how many times Amanda Todd was mentioned.  These girls committed suicide after vicious cyber-bullying.  Parsons was photographed as she was being gang raped.  Her picture was uploaded and instantly went viral.

I wonder why the media hasn’t again mentioned about the brutal rapes occurring in India.  Late last year I posted about two Indian girls who were cruelly raped.  I wonder how many of you know of the recent 5-year-old girl who was raped and left for death.  I do my best to often post on topics I find aren’t as heavily covered, but deserve closer attention.

My point is that there are so many more important stories to report on in this country let alone the world that it disappoints me that the news media decides to dedicate such a large segment of their allotted time to this trial.  I’m pretty sure we could be spending that ten minute TV segment on something more important.  Maybe say highlighting a charity or cause.

What do you think?

Do you understand all the hype?

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @adrakontaidis & @talkrealdebate


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