First of all, might I say that I definitely agree with Storee. She probably said it best, but I will give my two cents as well. Celebrity gossip "news" has really been irritating me lately (see the latest post on my personal blog if you wish). I know to some people, tabloid magazines have their place at the checkout counter, and most people (hopefully) know they are not news. Still, their presence perpetuates these stories through the airwaves and papers to the point that it is considered news. Jessica Simpson gained weight? Good for her, whatever. It's her personal business. Who cares. Since when did putting on a little weight merit a news story? Really, is that what's important to the media and the consumers? Where are news values these days? The marketplace of ideas is vast, but that doesn't mean news corporations can let their gatekeeping go to hell. Like Storee said, it's not ethical when non-news is posed as news. People need to hear about what's really going on- the things that really matter-- ie, the recession, government spending, genocide in African countries, consumerism, and the list goes on and on. Of course, I'm not saying news should be depressing. I'm just saying it should be real news. I'm also not making a blanket statement here. Some publications and stations display responsible journalism and gatekeeping, which is encouraging.
The thing we need to do, both as journalists and media consumers is support trustworthy entities that don't waste valuable media time and space with "filler." We need to communicate what our priorities are as American consumers and journalists. If we as journalists want to concern ourselves with meaningless, then we'll end up an uninformed, uneducated country. If we as consumers aren't objective and don't care about ethical reporting, then our media will continue down the slippery slope. I hope this doesn't sound all doomsday-esque. I just feel that, in order to achieve ethics in journalism, consumers and journalists need to work together to arrive at the ultimate truth.