Culture: News: Perspective
Statistical Pay Attention News Thingy   (+4)  [vote for, against]
Perspective over sensationalism

All news sources should be required to display one statistic at the top of each news report: the likelihood of the average person being personally affected by the subject of the report. Subjects would be coarse bins and open to tweaking from time to time.

The statistic could be presented as a number, pictograph, icon, color band, etc.

"Doctors Say Heart Disease Endemic" - 75%

"South-side Break-ins Continue" - 5%

"Child Falls Down Well" - 0.002%

"Shark Decapitates Katana-wielding Lingerie Model" - 0.000001%
-- the porpoise, May 26 2014

As concerns political debate... Nielsen_20Gullibility_20Ratings
spot on. [FlyingToaster, May 27 2014]

" Shark Decapitates Katana-wielding Lingerie Model "

Edit: Maybe she did train under my sword mentor...he was not a good teacher but he was an excellent fighter...
-- normzone, May 27 2014

On the right track but not the right metric in my opinion. "Doctors say you need air to breathe" 100% isn't very useful news. News is something new, that hasn't happened before. Therefore the metric should be

NewsMetric = LikelihoodItAffectsYou * UnexpectedOccurenceFactor

That way "Shark Decapitates Katana Wielding Lingerie Model" might actually be breaking news if it happens couple of times in a row (once: maybe, couple of times: extremely unexpected)

... even more so if the same Katana Wielding Lingerie model was involved in both incidents. Now that's newsworthy!
-- ixnaum, May 28 2014

random, halfbakery