Why does the media believe that it is important for me to know that the President enjoyed a golf game yesterday?
The media will usually use the President’s golf game as a lead-in to what it wants to say about current events. However, this does not sufficiently explain why the camera or the writer’s pen or the photographer’s lens naturally finds the president swinging a four foot pole at a two inch ball relevant and a good place to start.
Two concepts may help to explain this. The “reeling-in” and the “give the public a break” Ideas.
The former uses the golf game as backdrop because it does not expect the general public to pay attention to the intricate details of the story without first having a mental pacifier handed to them.
This “reeling in” leads the viewer by the hand to la la land where the under=lying message is coyly announced, for example, that the president is calm, cool, and collected, so “don’t worry when I tell you that he is on his way to prison for fraud, etc…”
This “give the public a break” technique is a sort of buffer between the story and what it really means, a public service to us from the media.
Combined, these two tricks of the trade lead to an intriguing story whereas there was previously only the possibility of a slightly different take on the never changing and endless stream of beaureaucratic red tape run amok that the journalist must call news or else lose his job