why is bad news more interesting’ than good news ?

Have you ever wondered why there is so much bad news? Maybe it’s because people think bad news is more interesting than good news.
A new study involving more than 1,000 people in 17 countries shows that, on average, people pay more attention to negative news than to positive news.
The findings, published this week in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggest that human bias towards negative news may be a major driver of negative news reporting. But the results also show that not everyone has such negative bias, and some people even have positive bias – indicating that positive news may have a market.
The authors of the study wrote: “At a time when news around the world is full of negative emotions, the importance of this topic is self-evident.”
Author Stewart Soroka, a political scientist at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, said that the negative emotions that he and his colleagues are interested in psychology will lead to trends that draw more attention to negative information than to the role it may play in shaping positive information.
In academia, one explanation for this bias is that “journalists are angry people and skeptics who create a lot of negative content, which is bad – bad for democracy, bad for people to read news,” Soloka said. “Our suspicion is that the appearance of the news depends not only on the feelings of the journalists, but also on the reaction of the audience.”
Scientists point out that there are some evolutionary reasons for the existence of negative prejudices. First, ignoring negative information (the storm is coming) is more risky than ignoring good news (a dog saved a boy from a tree). Researchers say focusing on negative news is often an effective survival strategy.
Although previous studies have tested this negative bias, they are mainly concentrated in white people, Americans and young people of College age. Soloka said he wanted to see if the results of these studies could be extended to other parts of the world.
To gain a wider global perspective, scientists recruited 1156 people in 17 countries: Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, France, Ghana, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, Senegal, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Researchers do their best to find a wider range of research participants. For example, they recruited people from the market in Ghana and brought their laboratory equipment to a shed in a building compound in India.
“It really depends on where we can get a good sample,” Soloka said.
Each participant was randomly assigned to watch seven BBC World News and Television reports, some negative and some positive. During the participants’observation, the researchers monitored their heart rate and skin conductivity (essentially a slight fluctuation in their sweat levels, which may indicate a person’s level of combat or escape response).
Researchers found that, on average, a small percentage of viewers were biased against negative news. Soloka said the event was mainly held in different countries and cultures.
However, scientists have also found that there seems to be a high degree of variability in response at the individual level. About two-fifths of the participants were either unbiased about negative news or unbiased about positive news.
According to Richard Lau, a political psychologist at Rutgers University, this means that the old saying “if blood bleeds, it will lead to death” may no longer apply. Liu Qihan was not involved in the study.
“One of the drawbacks of this study is that there is a lot of variability in the human body,” Liu said. “This is true of all cultures.”
Soroka said this could mean that the news media could turn the proportion of bad news into good news while still retaining audiences.
“It’s not that most people want to hear negative news all the time,” Soloka said. “I think knowing this opens up other possibilities in terms of news.

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