Good news is no news.

In this morning’s interview on BBC Radio 2, Matthieu Ricard commented on the big reduction in homocide and other violent crime in the world. He gave some amazing examples from the UK that show how much safer we are generally today than we would have been in the old days.

“Mr Happy” went on to ponder on how the reporting of the news can affect the way we feel. The perception of high crime levels is in some way due to the fact that headlines like “100 people had a marvellous time at the fayre yesterday” don’t sell newspapers, so we don’t hear good news stories very often unless it’s a light news day in the war zones.

The Science Bit (not)

Meantime back at the ranch, I’ve been unwittingly running a little experiment on Twitter for the last two weeks.

I’ve been pre-scheduling 20 daily tweets split across two Twitter accounts in an attempt to increase awareness of 2 websites I write for. Each tweet has a link to a specific blog post. Here’s the revelation:

  • Tweets with words like understand, success and learn, rarely get clicked.
  • Tweets using words like dangerous, disaster or free get the majority of the attention in the Twittersphere and most clicks.

Obviously this isn’t scientific in any way, but it’s interesting and I’m intrigued to see where it goes. I’m off to invent more calamities and disasters…have a nice day!

Photo Credit: gnuckx via Compfight cc

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