I’m going to throw this out there – I read the DailyMail. I do not like the Dailymail. I do not agree with the DailyMail. But I read it. I read it along with many other sources.
There have been two major non election votes that have blinded sided me in the last 5 or so years. The first was the AV poll, the second was Brexit. All of the sources of information I had suggested that AV would be introduced and we’d remain in the EU. Clearly, my sources of information were biased. My friendship groups were all people that held similar beliefs to myself, my chosen news sources presented the world in the way I viewed it and facebook was using carefully created algorithms to shape an echo-chamber bubble of safety where I was only exposed to views coinciding with my own.
I realised that this wasn’t a way I wanted to experience my life and the world we all share. I want a rounded hollistic view of the world, that shares many different view points. I didn’t understand the Brexit vote outcome, and I certainly didn’t like or agree with it. However, I wanted to understand it and learn more about the drivers and the society at large that would lead to people feeling that leaving the European Union was the best course of action.
My way of doing this was trying to pop the bubble I was existing in – to read new news sources (Even if I don’t agree with them), to widden my friendship circle and to look beyond my own views of the world. It isn’t easy and you certainly get a lot of flack when someone catches you reading the DailyMail or The Sun.
I’ve found it incredibly interesting how different news outlets presented the same story in incredibly opposing ways. How one news source might give larger and broader coverage of certain issues or events, while others ignored them completely.
Overall I think that conciously trying to understand the world around me and the views of people beyond my usual circle has been incredibly beneficial. In some regards I feel more empathic to the feelings that results in people coming to the conclusions that they did – but now have a greater understanding of why their arguments are flawed.
How can you trying to change someone’s point of view without listening to their point of view? They might have misconceptions or misundersatndings that are leading them to their way of thinking. If you take the time to listen and understand (though, not agree) with view points you find challenging, you may find that coming up with a counter arguement is easier.