Yesterday, the non-profit Americans Seeking Newsworthy Truth launched the free course “Bringing the Shock: How to Inspire Americans to Anger.” The course is aimed at “bringing honesty back to American journalism by exposing the rage-inducing truth.”
“Too long our online media has been driven by ‘facts’ that don’t get to the true heart of a story. It’s time for us to bring the American people what they really deserve from their news outlets: outrage,” explained Joshua Hughes, Americans Seeking Newsworthy Truth founder and president at the course’s launch party.
Hughes continued to describe how he was inspired to create the course when he was “bored to tears” while reading through his morning paper.
“I came away and just felt, educated, informed. There was so much rage on the TV, so much partisan ire, but I wasn’t getting to participate in that. I just got a wonky rundown of some budget numbers. I felt cheated.”
So he created Americans Seeking Newsworthy Truth and began a campaign to bring more emotion to American journalism. The free course is just one of many campaigns that he has planned for 2014.
“The real truth of American politics is anger. We as Americans have a right to know all of the enraging things our politicians say, context be damned!”
According to Hughes, the course will focus primarily on creating anger, but will cover other emotions as well, like guilt, sadness, disgust, and what he called “an awww, look, a puppy! reaction.”
“All of these emotions have been proven to show a spike in online traffic. And, really, is there anything more democratic than page hits? They are the voice of the American people! Give the people what they want, journalists!”
The course is aimed at journalism students and will be taught by journalists from BuzzFeed, Gawker, Fox News, and CNN. The first lesson will cover creating compelling headlines, like the one for this article, suggested by Hughes himself.