Yesterday’s news Today

Over the last year or so, I have slowed down my news consumption. I have no news apps on my phone. I removed the two news channels I watched—BBC news and CNN—from the favourites. I unsubscribed from all news-related newsletters. I even unsubscribed from all news related podcasts, including NPR’s Indicator and The Economist’s Intelligence podcast.

I still consume news. Most of my world news comes weekly, from The Economist. But a few times a day I open on the Firefox Focus browser1 on my phone to check on latest happenings. Once or twice a day, I also switch to BBC News2 (and rarely, CNN) on the TV to check on the news.

Yesterday I decided to also add a delay to the news. Make it slower still. To read yesterday’s news, today.

Instead of checking the news on the phone multiple times a day, and catching up on TV news a couple of times, I would only check news in the morning and then nothing during the day.

Most news takes a night of rest to come to a relative state of conclusion. By next morning, when I check the previous night’s news, it would have rested, matured, and analysed. It would also have moved from ‘he said this, then she said this, and now waiting for them to respond’ to an analysis of the bigger picture of what happened and why.

This is something I miss about having a print newspaper. I was a multi-newspaper subscriber in India. But printed newspaper subscriptions are quite expensive in the UK, so I’ve never had one. I miss getting a newspaper in the morning with a settled, digested, analysed version of the news. The version that also looks at why, not just at what and how.

Since I can’t afford buying a daily newspaper, I’m wondering how to get this delayed news. Online sources are focused these days on the day’s news, if not news by the minute. I don’t live close to a library where I can walk down for a catchup of day’s newspapers.

Subscribing to a morning news-summary newsletter is an option, but may lead to re-cluttering of the inbox. It would also mean opening email before I want to, and possibly getting distracted by other new emails.

I’m open to better suggestions.

Continue reading Yesterday’s news Today

No News TV

R is away for a few days, and I’m itching to try some changes.

My preferred change is to get rid of the mobile phone. I left it at home for the Corsica vacation last year, and it turned out to be amazing. However, with R away, I need to be reachable, so can’t completely get rid of the phone.

Another thought was to stay off of watching TV (including videos on mobile/laptop). I did that, semi-successfully, for the last quarter of 2017, and quite enjoyed it. However, this is the season of my favourite cycling races, the spring classics, and I really don’t want to miss them. (I just bought a Eurosport player subscription so I can watch the spring classics!)

I could give up social media, but it wouldn’t count as much of a change. I’m not on Facebook. I’ve restricted Twitter to Tweetdeck on desktop, so only use for specific posts/responses, no reading. I do check Instagram a few times a day, but it isn’t a sink hole of links and debates. Strava barely counts as a social media.

So far I’ve only found one thing I can drop. It’s small, but it may help achieve some calm: give up on the 24 hour news cycle1.

  1. I won’t be watching news channels on TV. BBC and CNN are bulk of my non-Eurosport TV diet2.
  2. I won’t check news on mobile. I check techmeme and Google news probably half a dozen times a day, each.
  3. I will stay off (reading updates on) Twitter.
  4. I will continue to read the 2 daily newsletters I subscribe to – Quartz and Economist Espresso.
  5. I will continue to read the weekly issue of The Economist.

I have a feeling tomorrow will be hard, given my addiction to news TV, techmeme and Google news. I also have a feeling that, once I’m over the withdrawal symptoms, this may help me achieve a bit more calm.

  1. The inspiration 
  2. I usually switch on the TV to BBC or CNN while eating lunch, and watch it till I finish the post lunch coffee. Ditto for dinner. Unless R has already switched on the PS3, to watch Grey’s anatomy on Amazon prime. 

NotW is no more Whattay brilliant move by…

NotW is no more.

Whattay brilliant move by The Empire – the subject of all that bad publicity disappears, the key people in the publication are safe, Dave Cameron gets something to present as outcome of his tough talk … and, eventually, get rewarded for their swift corrective action with the ownership of BSkyB.

As for the other media organisations making a big thing out of this, they were clearly warned by Dave Cameron yesterday when he announced that the new enquiries will focus on behaviour of not just NotW but all media organisations in the country. Barely a veiled threat from a PM who has one ex-head of NotW as his personal head of media relations and another as his close friend and neighbour.

I doubt if Ed Mill shouting from the rooftops can do anything to hurt the Conservative-NewsCorp alliance.

Just realised that even the marked ‘Live’ news…

Just realised that even the marked ‘Live’ news on BBC is sometimes delayed by at least 15 minutes.

Barack Obama’s convoy passed in front of me as I was cycling back from Marylebone some time back and BBC News is showing it on TV right now as Live news.

In other news, cycled to High Wycombe today – only 60kms but about 500m climbing over 2-3 spots. Didn’t have the time or energy to cycle back. Really need to work on my climbing muscles :|