Following the 2016 election, faith in US and international news-media outlets plummeted. Within the United States, the relationship between trust in the government and media satisfaction is decidedly lower than comparable countries. In fact, research shows that the US has the most partisan media base in the world.
Much of this occurred in the wake of Donald Trump’s assent to the presidency, with wild accusations of rigged Google searches and other extraordinary claims. Fortunately, the next generation is taking the truth into their own hands.
Spurred on by growing distrust in mass media following the presidential election, 17-year-old Jesse Anderson set out to create an unbiased news outlet for teens. This student activist wants “people to recognize that one voice – their voice – can change the world.”
Her website, News for Young Advocates Today (NYAToday), works to “engage, excite, and educate youth about issues in the political sphere.” The 33-person staff, comprised of young women and men from no less than 13 different countries, strives to lend a voice to those groups which would otherwise go unheard.
“Turning off the TV does not make an issue go away. Though much easier to turn a deliberately blind eye to the world around us, crises will only worsen,” Anderson explained to us at New York Minute Magazine (NYMM) via email. “But, if we convince ourselves that nothing will change, nothing will. You can always do something, even if that ‘something’ is small.”
“The work that I do is difficult. Every day, you wake up to a world with bombings, killings, and leaders who do not have the vested interests of their people at heart.”
But she doesn’t lose her sense of optimism, telling NYMM, “you also wake up to a world with hope. I read headlines about youth who are making positive change in their communities every day. That brings me tremendous joy, and if we invest in youth, we invest in our future.”
Anderson knows she has her work cut out for her, but recognizes that her struggles can only serve to make her stronger.
“Failure is one of the most important lessons that I’ve learned while running my own company. To be quite honest, I had no idea what I was getting into. All I knew was that I wanted to give every single youth a platform where they could not only raise their voice, but cultivate empowering, objective content for youth around the world,” she told NYMM.
“But, I’ve failed so many times. If I never experienced failure, however, how would I know what true success looks like? You have to fall down in order to get back up. I’ve learned to never see failure as a sign of weakness, but as a sign of strength.”
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