Marquette’s new UFO landing strip is a good idea

Just checking. There is, of course, no UFO landing strip, and possibly no UFOs – but that’s fodder for another editorial.

What we really wanted to see is if anyone intended on reading past the headline.

In 2014, a study by the Media Insight Project found that 41 percent of Americans had watched, read or heard any in-depth news stories – beyond headlines – in the past week.

So, in other words, the majority of Americans don’t read past the headline. We get it. You’re busy. Spending 10 or more minutes with an article is asking a lot.

But, how much information can you get from a headline? A candidate’s name? That city council has decided to do something?

And, oh boy, let’s not get into the really complicated issues, like the U.P.’s complex energy challenges. I mean, as long as we know the U.P. has elaborate power issues, is it important also to know what they are? Perhaps only if we want to find a workable solution. Knowing – and understanding – what’s happening in our community and the world around us is important because it impacts our way of life. How can we go about solving problems if we don’t know what they are? How can we affect change if we don’t understand the issue?

How can we responsibly elect officials we know nothing about?

The alarming aspect of headline-only readers is this appears to carry over to social media as well, where people continue to share stories that are not factual. Users might see something interesting in their newsfeed and simply click share without ever reading the story they’ve just played a part in disseminating to others.

Suddenly, otherwise false information is factual and hundreds, thousands or even millions now believe it to be true.

Just like you can’t judge a book by its cover, you also cannot make a snap conclusion from a headline.

But, of course, you know this – you finished reading this editorial.

Please, spread the word – and share that on social media.

Mining Journal (Marquette)