Haiti, Iran, Congo, Sri Lanka.. so many important events are going on around the world, that even a news junkie such as myself has a hard time keeping up. As this new documentary points out, "Americans' attention span for global crises is usually very short." And with 15 second clips about these extremely complicated and intractable conflicts wedged among stories of Michael Jackson and Jon & Kate (and of course their eight), how can we blame people for not knowing what's going on outside of their realities- or for getting easily frustrated and overwhelmed when they try to understand. We could go into a debate about who is at fault for this, the media or the audience. I won't do that here, but this documentary, "Reporter," by filmmaker Eric Metzgar talks about how important journalists, such as Nicholas Kristof, battle with this short attention span in order to tell the stories of these conflicts. They also discuss Kristof's tendencies towards afro-pessimistic reporting, which is another interesting debate. The entire documentary premiers on HBO February 18th.
Thanks for pointing this out to me Brian C!