Millennials pay no attention to news

Andrew Linnabary

After turning in a quiz in a communications course Wednesday, I asked to speak with my teacher in the hall about the answer to a particular question.

He browsed through my quiz, and was happy to see that the current events section was accurate.

He said quite a few students struggle to recall events such as the Brussel terror attacks or the WSU students involved in an altercation with an alleged Trump supporter at Kwik Shop.

In the case of the terror attacks, it seems like someone would need to go out of their way to avoid hearing about it. Social media, TV, word of mouth — how can such a major event be completely unnoticed?

In the case of the WSU students at Kwik Shop, it’s one thing to brush off news like that when it’s happening elsewhere in the U.S., but here at home and so closely linked to WSU?

It would seem logical that given our ever-increasing interconnectivity through smart phones and computers, that we would be more informed than ever. This does not seem to be the case.

Selfies, tweets, long-winded Facebook posts — rather than bringing people together, technology seems to have made us increasingly narcissistic.

A study by the American Press Institute showed only 39 percent of millennials actively consume news. Their No. 1 gateway? Facebook.

What’s scary about that is how wildly inaccurate some of the “news” links on Facebook can be. A large amount of the headlines on Facebook link to attention-grabbing fake news from illegitimate news sources.

It’s disheartening that young people don’t take advantage of such immediate access to news. Apple now has an integrated news app that compiles stories from a large number of outlets. Access is literally at iPhone users’ fingertips without having to download extra apps or browse the Internet.

With technological advances, the decline of print journalism has been inevitable. More and more, we are turning to our phones and computers for news. Mobile analytics firm Flurry reported a 141 percent growth in news and magazine apps in 2015. The ease of use and access is advantageous, but young Americans are not just rejecting newspapers, they are rejecting news.

It takes just a few minutes a day to get informed on the happenings in the world. The news is a tool through which we can learn, teach and grow together.