Yeah, we know the idea of media sensationalism is crazy ridiculous. Because that sort of thing never, ever happens.
Okay, okay. In all seriousness, even if that were true, Ebola has sent the media — particularly the American media — into frenzied journalism that borders on hysteria.
Understand: we're not making light of Ebola. It's a deadly disease that's killed many and must be taken very seriously. This isn't about Ebola itself. It's about the media's love of sensationalizing every big news story for ratings.
These headlines and the people that wrote them are not part of the solution.
You'd think MSNBC or Fox would be the worst offender, but surprisingly, the news outlet with the most insane headlines has been CNN. This is just one example; keep reading for a few more. [Hat tip to ken27238.]
Yes, your eyes actually read those words. After this article was published, someone at USA Today decided that maybe it was kinda sorta tasteless to suggest that readers profit from the death and suffering of others. The title has since been changed to "Stocks involved with Ebola." But you can still see the original version at archive.org. [Hat tip to Gawker.]
Promise us you won't do it.
"Will Ebola sink dems' chances at the polls?" pic.twitter.com/r60B5x9ktp
— mallow610 (@mallow610) October 19, 2014
If all you see of this CNN.com article is that headline, you'd have cause for serious concern. You have to read the article to get to the part that completely negates the actual headline: "Speculation that Ebola virus disease might mutate into a form that could easily spread among humans through the air is just that: speculation, unsubstantiated by any evidence."
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No it can't. As anyone willing to do the tiniest bit of research can easily find out.
They lock the cure up in Area 51. With Elvis.
The fact that this article was written by Max Brooks, the actual author of World War Z, doesn't change the fact that that headline exists purely to fan the flames.
Because we don't feed, bathe, change the bed sheets, or clean up the excrement of Ebola patients, obviously.