Archive for category News

Best News Sites as Alternatives to the Network News

You want to know what is really going on?  Are you tired of the drivel that passes for news from ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox News and CNN?

Unfortunately, most of the remaining “good” news sources come from outside the USA. Each has their own unique view of their region, the world and the US.  I have omitted any that I have found to be propaganda arms of national governments or corporations.

Note that I have also omitted AP (Associated Press), partly because you will find AP news everywhere here in America. With the death of UPI years ago it left AP as the only news wire in the US creating a mono-culture which I think is unhealthy.

One thing that you will notice when reading, watching or listening to foreign news sources is that many of the things that we think are happening only in the USA are also happening in other places too.  Over time you come to realize that these are human problems and, conditions of humanity, not just things that are unique only to America.  While I do not wish bad things on anyone, there is some odd comfort in knowing we are not alone.

Well here is a list of the best free news sources that I am familiar with.

AFP – A French news wire service. They really do not have news on their website, but you can subscribe to them on Facebook or Twitter for news updates, or get one of the AFP news apps for iOS or Android.  AFP mobile website is here.

Al Jazeera – covers US news and World News with the best coverage of the Middle East and the Islamic world (a huge area.)  I was skeptical of Al Jazeera initially, but after watching it on TV I have found it to be much more extensive and balanced than most American news coverage.

Australian Broadcasting Co. – ABC.net.au is the Australian equivalent of the BBC, that is the national radio and television service.  The Asian Pacific region is a hard area for Americans to get a handle on but the Aussies know it well.

BBC – The British Broadcasting Corporation.  Radio, television, Internet the BBC is one of the most extensive world wide sources of news and entertainment.  They actually had to cut back on their news website because commercially owned news sites were complaining about the competition. Remember the British had the largest empire in the history of the world: they still have bureaus and correspondents covering most of their former colonies.  Track down the BBC app for your mobile device or tablet, it is worth having.

Daily Telegraph – Since The Times (of London) and The New York Times, went behind pay walls, the Daily Telegraph has become my favorite online newspaper.  I value it for it’s coverage of the UK, Europe and the US.  I am not sure how long these online newspapers can continue to offer free editions so enjoy it now while you can.

DW – Germany is the powerhouse of Europe. Fortunately they provide wonderful news and cultural programing at DW.  DW covers Germany central Europe and good coverage of Eastern Europe including Russia. Excellent.

France 24 – TV news in English, 24/7.  France 24 has one of my favorite 10 minute news streams, plus cultural, business and other news. They have great iOS apps and a decent Android app.

Guardian – My second most favorite paper. Guardian has two editions: a US edition with US news up front and a UK edition.  Somehow the Guardian does cultural news, book reviews and the like better than the rest.

The Independent – another UK based newspaper worth reading.

NHK – NHK is sort of the Japanese PBS. It’s good. Excellent if dry news. NHK helps you understand what is going on in the Pacific Rim, Japan and China without propaganda.  Lots of other programming about Japan. Highly recommended.

NPR – America’s own National Public Radio. Some of the best radio news programing being produced today. People, in certain quarters, like to complain about NPR, but I think that is because NPR does not just say what they want to hear. Commercial radio news has gone down the tube but NPR has maintained it’s quality. Most mobile systems have an NPR app that lets you listed to free podcasts of NPR programs.

Paper.li – You have heard about Twitter as a source of news and breaking news? Well sometimes you cannot sit there watching your Twitter feed all day but with Paper.li you can craft your own topical or regional newspaper formed of Tweets formed by subject, #hashtag or lists. Or find a paper created by another and subscribe. You don’t have to be a Twitter member to get a benefit from Twitter with Paper.li

Reuters – Reuters focus is on business news, but it contains a lot of world news too.  Good source.

Speigel – Updated weekly. German. Has some good articles and news analysis.

Finally, check out your own local newspaper or local NPR or PBS-TV station, because what is going on in your own town is also important to you.

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