If I ran a big-time news service, one of my policies would be to only run items as news that are really news. Here’s an example:
Why is it news when Madelyne Gorman Toogood allegedly beats her daughter? She’s the Indiana woman who got caught on a parking lot video tape apparently punching her daughter in the backseat of her car. Child abuse is obviously a bad thing, but as these cases go, this one looks pretty routine. The violence was not extreme or unusual, just a mother beating on her kid. Lots of people beat their children, and lots of them get caught, so that’s not unusual either. This isn’t even a case of a common event happening to famous people: Neither Ms. Toogood nor her daughter Martha were in the public eye before this incident.
The story of Madelyne Toogood is news only because it was caught on video and played on network television. Thus, we’ve reached the sad situation where a subject is news only because it is news.