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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Think about the value menu at a fast-food restaurant. When you’re hungry, everything looks delicious, and it looks even better when it’s fast and efficient. Everything’s cheap and you can’t wait to stuff it down. However, when you’re done, all it feels like is empty calories. There’s no substance to what you consumed and you’re left feeling empty, wanting more than when you started.

This is the way Daily Mail contributes to the world of media.

The Daily Mail is an online tabloid institution disguised as a news media organization. They feed out daily snippets of content on the most talked about people at the time, normally focusing on the most click-worthy options of the week. Their Snapchat subscription story especially highlighted this on the homepage of Snapchat, which allows people to tap through their clickbait headlines with little to no context.

While some stories follow the same rhetoric as E! News or Entertainment Tonight with sources and stories that the public cares about — feeding into my passion for entertainment and pop culture news — others cannot be bothered to even act like news. Some stories revolve around a model wearing a crop top or one of the Obama children walking around the college campus they go to. One that stood out to me as especially annoying is when they described Olivia Wilde walking around LA as “makeup free,” focusing a lot of stories on women in the limelight on their appearance.

Other stories are simply grizzly and upsetting security camera footage of violence, baiting people with the worst acts of human behavior, laying into the violence equals content mindset that many organizations have denounced as cheap news.

The worst stories in my opinion are the stories that are geared toward conservative agendas that have biased language against those in the transgender community. While they disguise these as news, many of the stories have language that seems as though they are belittling or even invalidating the trans community.

The only thing that makes these stories even worse is the lack of bylines on these Snapchat stories. There is no attribution to these articles, holding no journalists accountable for biased and even hateful content, disregarding the transparency aspect of journalism that is so important for the institution of media. These allow for these comments to be made without any consequences for those writing them, which is my biggest complaint about the Daily Mail.

This also allows these writers to use biased adjectives to depict the celebrities they talk about as well. I read an article on Hunter Biden weeks back and the first word in the article was embarrassing. This immediately showed their political bias, attacking a man. This is not a good example of journalism, even if most people can agree that someone’s actions are embarrassing in a sense. The Daily Mail does this with a lot of politicians, especially democratic ones, only making their case of bias even worse.

The other highly disturbing fact about the Daily Mail is how much content they are pushing out every day. I checked out one writer’s page, and for the day he had posted 14 articles. While most of them are briefs on celebrity fashion (or women’s appearance), there is no sustainable way one person can turn out 14 articles in one day and have them all checked by copy editors and have them to the highest extent of journalism possible. The Daily Mail is a factory for morsels of information that have no real content, but only one writer’s view on topics that people will find clickable, proving that they don’t see stakes in their news at all.

This high turnout system also doesn’t allow these writers to get the full story, working with one source at best. This is killing the credibility system they are supposed to work diligently with as a news source, allowing for the journalist to write their own narrative. This is why people don’t take the news at face value because they believe that everything is from the writer’s perspective. When a highly read news source is only turning out articles with no sources, this only pushes the fake news narrative that other media conglomerates are working tirelessly to erase.

News like this only continues this false narrative that the media is something to laugh at and something to no longer take seriously in this country. The Daily Mail does not care enough of their own content that they are actively hurting others by trying to turn out even similar content, painting entertainment news, which I work hard on with pop culture analysis, into something with a negative connotation and something that people feel free to comment sarcastically “hard-hitting journalism” on Twitter. Entertainment news could be taken as seriously as other news beats if organizations like Daily Mail didn’t rewrite history by making it mindless and something to put at the end of all homepages, genuinely hurting the credibility of other entertainment news and serious talk shows wanting to analyze the culture that most people keep up to date on as social media pushes this content forward.

Let’s go back to my value meal analogy: the Daily Mail is empty news: cheap and fast making it desirable to most who don’t want to tune into the nightly news or read a 1000-word article that gives them the truth and the whole truth. It’s an epidemic of efficiency in the news that makes it worth nothing when you’re done reading it. It’s meant to be consumed and thrown away, nothing of substance sticking with the reader.

It’s irresistible with the catchy headlines, and it’s dangerous in the content. This is what news that’s not news does to this multi-billion dollar industry. Next time you want to check in with celebrities, at least open E! News for your sake.

I am a freshman at Michigan State University. I am majoring in Journalism and Political Science. I hope to work as a political analyst or speech writer for politicians in the future. My passion is politics and being an advocate for women's rights. I also love to speak out about mental and women's health. I also love creative writing such as poetry and stand-up comedy.
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