RebootTheMedia asks the question, what would our reality be like if what we saw on TV presented a positive view of the world? People are already out there making a difference — the media can amplify their actions by sharing their stories. I am seeing the possibility of a sea change every day as I find those stories and write about them here.
Take a Thanksgiving Day story on The NBC Nightly News called, “Giving Thanks”. This story reported on how scientists are putting gratitude and acts of kindness under the microscope only to discover than “humans are genetically wired to be kind” — that people who do acts of kindness are doing what comes naturally. This field of study is called positive psychology, also known as the science of happiness, and a slew of scientists and scholars are providing growing evidence that humanity’s natural state is one of generosity, compassion and empathy.
Also on Thanksgiving weekend an entire hour of ABC’s This Week with Christiane Amanpour was devoted to something called, “The Giving Pledge” — an initiative led by Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates, inviting the wealthiest billionaires to commit to giving the majority of their wealth to philanthropy (promoting the welfare of others, expressed by the generous donation of money to good causes). The people who signed the pledge said it was their moral responsibility to give.
Bill Gates describes his experience with the initiative this way: “There’s a certain momentum in terms of the more you hear about other people doing giving, it will encourage you to do more. And certainly all of us who got involved have been inspired by each other’s stories, and that rededicates us to getting this money to have the most positive impact.”
Mr. Gates could well be talking about the point of RebootTheMedia: the more you hear about being grateful and doing good, the more you are encouraged and inspired to make a difference. And, hopefully, those responsible for media content will rededicate themselves to getting the media to have its most positive impact.