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  • The World is Crazy Addicted.

    Why is reality television so popular? People don’t like to exist in their own lives – the vicarious experience of other’s problems is one of the great joys of the modern age. Jean Baudrillard talks about a world that abuses the images of destruction for entertainment.

    The media transforms real events, death, destruction, etc. Into the unreal, as part of your TV screen and newspaper, images to be consumed by masses of people. This devalues the event, because it is reduced to a spectator sport instead of a unique occurrence. Media and Video Games is a perfect example of this – they outline all sorts of terrible problems in the status quo in an effort to get you, to believe them as the “real.” Their playing the role of the media implicates them in the production of the real to be consumed as unreal.

    Baudrillard also says that images of destruction, catastrophe and disaster are exaggerated by the media and used to give pleasure to those in the first world at the expense of everyone else. As a society, we export death and import back its image, drawing satisfaction from the exploitation of other people and cultures and our efforts to solve the problems that we actually enjoy so much. The news networks and video games is a perfect example of this process – their harms detail disaster in the status quo which they provide a simulated solution to through fiat, all in an effort to make themselves feel powerful in this exchange of suffering.

    Their supposed solution is a part of this process – they will never actually fix all the problems they claim, because then they would be left without a source of enjoyment. Even if their solution does work, it will have the side effect of creating more suffering to continue the cycle. A perfect example of this is Iraq – we get all worked up over what a terrible person Saddam is and the damage he could cause, so we go remove him to improve the situation, but now there’s been an explosion of porn, drugs and violence in Iraq after the invasion so we can continue to consume the images of disorder and trouble and justify even more interventions, which makes their harms are inevitable.

    Also, this quest for more sources of suffering is a constantly expanding process. Once we fix some problems, we have to generate more to keep the images flowing, encouraging artificial tragedies to replace natural ones. This mindset ends in human extinction as the ultimate spectacle.

    Note that we don’t ask you to ignore suffering in the real world – Baudrillard has no problem with helping people out. You should refuse to be moved by images of catastrophe. Also, there death isn't used to justify bad actions or the continuation of this death.

  • People love the media

    The media gives people what they want. The media gives people the kind of coverage of huge disasters because people are fascinated by other people's misery. Disasters serve to make people feel better about themselves and their situation, and can often distract from real, yet less captivating, threats and issues.

  • Enjoy is not necesarry addiction.

    If "disaster porn" means what i think it does, I feel people definitely enjoy these disaster movies, but that doesn't make them addicted. There is nothing wrong with a good, enjoyable, action packed disaster movie every now and then. They are often quite unpredictable, and entertaining for people to watch.


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