Chris Anderson, author of the Long Tail, has “finally come up with the right metaphor” to describe the fact that the news value of any event decreases with distance. He calls it, “The vanishing point theory of news”.
What, I wonder, is wrong with the proximity of news theory which has served us well as long as I have been a journalist. The proximity can be either physical, cultural or emotional. It explains why, for example, international news is given a domestic angle and why in news terms the US often has greater proximity to the UK than Germany.
Do I sense a new book on the horizon? “Vanishing Point” is certainly a better title than “Proximity”.