Non-news

Non-news is classified in the dictionary as communication, information, or entertainment that is not newsworthy. We see some of that on actual news outlets, but my attention here is more toward the posting on social media of events that not only bear no significance more broadly, but also don't seem to bear any significance even to the person posting it. 

If you visited a new coffee shop or wanted to share your morning routine or that you're dreading laundry again, great. I think I question when it seems not even to have any value to the person posting it. I'm asking myself, "why are you posting this? What's the value you want to see? Do you want attention, do you want to share the fact that these are your shoes today? Who benefits from this? Is this just an idle use of your time, are you trying to communicate something?"

I think a counterexample one could bring up is that this is the purpose of social media. I'm not arguing that one should only share major life events or actual news stories or their reactions to those news stories and events or information. I get off the train in that some shared pieces of experience seem so routine that I question their purpose altogether. 

But hey! People want to see your life and know what you're up to! They feel like they get to connect with you more when they see you shopping for groceries, tying your shoes, waking up in the morning, etc. I'm not totally sure though. If I set up an Instagram live and put it three feet away from me at all times, would you watch it? And I think this is the case for most people, we really aren't interested in the minutiae of people's lives. You just wouldn't watch the Truman Show of someone's life. 

At the core when you share something, you're saying:

  • I think other people would enjoy this
  • I'm trying to make people feel something
  • I'm trying to relate to people
  • I'm trying to give/receive information (asking for opinions is included here)
  • I enjoy this, and you might too
  • This tells you my whereabouts or activities, and I'm expecting some reaction
  • I think this will help market something
  • I think this will help reinforce a brand image
  • And so on.

You're saying, "I think this has value". Non-news is devoid of attachment to interpretation, reactionary quality, or any importance at all. It's all the in-between moments in your life that you still live and experience but aren't news. Just ask yourself why you're sharing something, that's all. 

Bryce LewisComment