The News Negativity Bias

Takeaway: The news media has an overly negative bent—keep this in mind as you consume it because it could affect your mental health more than you realize. Ironically, the news may even siphon away the mental resources you need to make a difference.

Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes, 24s.

The fact that the news is largely negative is not itself news, but the extent to which it is can be surprising. I had this idea in mind the other night when I tuned into a half-hour daily news broadcast in my home country of Canada. Sure enough, the program more than lived up to my expectations: not a single story in the entire broadcast was positive. Only one was even neutral. 

This is obviously a challenging time. But setting aside this variable, I’m fascinated by the news media’s bias towards negativity. Interestingly, it has almost always been this way.

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