Media Around Cyclone Yasi: How Broadcast News May Determine the Outcome

I want to comment on the media we broadcast around events like Cyclone Yasi, to offer a perspective and then open it to discussion on the floor.
Here’s my view. There’s a great nasty cyclone that’s stirred itself up in the ocean and is heading in the direction of a populated area. It’s big so, for those in the way it’s terrifying and for everyone else it’s a morbid fascination. Reading, watching and listening to the reports that are broadcast makes it look like the greatest horror movie you’ll ever see. Get your popcorn and prepare to watch the bodies, cars and buildings fly.
Yes, it looks like it’s going to be an awful disaster but in no report will you see any prospect of an alternative ending. They won’t tell you it could change direction, they won’t tell you it could shrink in size. It’s always the worst possible scenario because, as the news people know, that is more exciting and more likely to get you to tune into the news.
I’m very much a follower of the Law of Attraction and see evidence of my efforts in every aspect of my life. If more people knew how to use it to an advantage, what a different world we would live in.
The theory goes:
What we focus on gets stronger.
What we focus on we will more likely see evidence of in the future.
Has anybody stopped to wonder how all this “disaster” media is affecting the world consciousness? How it might be focussing the whole world’s energy into the worst possible outcome and making it all the more likely?
Locally for me in Sydney Australia we saw a news bulletin a few years back about a racist fight that had ballooned into the possibility of a riot in Cronulla. I was amazed to see the 6 o’clock news every night, starting Monday that week, talking about how there was going to be a riot on Saturday. I believe their focus made this riot FAR bigger than what it would have been had they not kept reporting it. People turned up in their thousands on Saturday. Some came to watch the action. Some to just have an excuse to punch someone they were unlikely to be held accountable to. The 6 o’clock news literally advertised the event, brought it into focus not just in the people that showed up at the beach that day but also in the minds of many thousands of Australians in their homes who feared the consequences or were hungry to see something real and exciting on the TV.
I understand the Cronulla riot was a human engineered disaster but what if the theory applies to natural disasters as well? When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, the same thing happened. How many hours of media coverage over 6 days were sent out beforehand expecting the worst? The cyclone continued on it’s path and grew bigger. Is it possible the world’s focus on it along with the emotions of fear, worry, fascination and excitement had an impact on the outcome?
If so, what can we do in the media to change this approach? I agree, the people who appear to be in the places likely to be hit need to know about it. What about the rest of us who don’t live there though? Could we change the way the news is Broadcast outside the local target area to give more possible endings to the story, so you come away with the feeling of hope? Of being able to imagine there is another way this could end? That it might change direction, head back out to sea and run out of puff?
When more of us understand the connection between what we choose to focus our thoughts on and the powerful influence it can have on the result, we may consciously decide to put our own efforts into steering disasters towards a happier ending. When the world focuses on THAT ending, Law of Attraction says we may be able to make a difference.