Aaron Swartz doesn't like reading the news. In fact, he insists that news is bad for you
The day-to-day news isn't just useless — it's terrible! Instead of reflective analysis of political policy proposals, they talk about minute details of events from the 70s! Instead of informative stories on our government system, they write endlessly about the trial of some random people.
While I agree that the media isn't exactly the most poignant with the topics it presents (or perhaps it's too much so?), I don't believe the news to be particularly boring. In fact, it's RSS which makes news not boring for me: having to sift through uninteresting news site headlines before turned me away from the news.
And yet, keeping up with the news, no matter the content being boring or not, provides a means with which further communication can be made. In Japan, I do my best to skim through headlines to know what the Japanese are being informed of for the sake of later discussion. Reading the news (or watching too) is a part--albeit, usually only the beginning--of the discussion.
In this way, the news is a means of conveying trends, and these trends serve as a platform on which people can stand to discuss; and through discussion with one another comes the real