During the Covid-19 pandemic, news outlets became increasingly dark and depressing. Since we emerged from the pandemic, scandals in politics, news of the war in Ukraine and the cost of living crisis have dominated. As a result, many of us have actively chosen to either limit our news intake or actively avoid it altogether due to its damaging effects on our mental health and wellbeing. 
So, where are the positive stories? There is plenty of good stuff happening in the world, but who is shouting about it? 
The Positive News magazine is working to change journalism for good. Their focus on uplifting and hopeful stories has helped bring communities together in celebration rather than tearing them apart in conflict. 

What is Positive News? 

Positive News is an online and print magazine focusing on what’s going right in the world. With a range of stories from the global boom in renewable energy to community work within schools and education, Positive News is empowering people to make an impactful difference. 

Why are we Getting Involved? 

Our business revolves around storytelling. By sharing our thoughts on Positive News stories, we want to unlock and dissert the narratives that have spoken to us as individuals with a view to spreading the good news! 
Studies have shown that sharing positive stories with those around you can increase happiness and mental wellbeing. 
The Artus team have worked to draw together some of their favourite news stories from February, sharing why they were impactful and how their time consuming media was positively influenced. Here they are! 

Olivia - The Great Barrier Reef 

In February, Positive News reported that Australia had “sunk proposals for a new coal mine near the Great Barrier Reef”. In an announcement on Twitter, Australia’s environment minister, Tanya Pilbersek concluded that “The adverse environmental impacts [were] simply too great”. 
When reflecting on the article, Olivia mentioned that the Great Barrier Reef was a place she has always wanted to explore, and the environmental disruption impacting the reef often causes her to feel disheartened. 
Olivia said, “To hear that the Great Barrier Reef is currently being protected against an emerging coal project fills me with hope and optimism for the future of our planet - and hopefully when I get to the Great Barrier Reef, its ecosystem will be thriving”. 

Lucy - Free School Meals 

A one-off scheme introduced by mayor Sadiq Khan is offering every primary school pupil in London free school meals throughout the next academic year. 
While the scheme is not permanent, there are calls for the £130m plan to be made permanent. This story is particularly impactful considering the current cost of living crisis. 
When discussing why she chose this article, Lucy discussed the importance of “becoming a more accepting and equal nation”. Despite the current temporary nature of the scheme, Lucy hopes that “it continues throughout the UK to help other impoverished children and parents that are struggling”. 

Rachel - Four-Day Workweek 

Researchers at the University of Cambridge conducted a study on the impact of a “pioneering four-day week trial”. The idea of a four-day workweek has often been dismissed as utopian and unrealistic; however, the results have been nothing short of positive. 
The study found that 71% of participants reported lower levels of burnout and 62% found that it was easier to combine work with their social life. With a reduced number of sick days and a drop in the amount of staff leaving, the trial has found major breakthroughs for the movement. 
Rachel has experienced a variety of full-time jobs, including the typical 9-to-5, and has often wondered whether the five-day workweek actually “helps or hinders performance”. Having previously tried to cram as much working time as possible into the working week, Rachel found that having dedicated time off can help with productivity. 
She said, “It’s really reassuring to read that four-day working week experiments have proved successful, and I hope it will encourage businesses and employees alike to reconsider healthier working practices.” 

Zach - AI Has Arrived 

At Artus, we often find ourselves poring over and discussing the latest technological advancements. As copywriters, the advent of AI can appear to be a daunting concept. However, it is important to view this technology as a potential opportunity rather than a threat. 
The article Zach chose, which discusses AI and in particular ChatGPT, observes the technology's ability to create all manner of written material in seconds - from blogs and news articles to song lyrics and even computer code. 
Highlighting how AI has some clear benefits while also having limitations, Zach reflects on how he began Artus “with the primary intention to write engaging copy for human readers, with Google robots being an (important and necessary) secondary consideration”. 
“This article 'AI is here. It's time to be more human.' provides reassurance. AI can be useful to an extent but, in the words of the article's author, it 'will never catch your eye in a bar, or fall in love, or turn heartbreak into poetry'.” 

Ellie - Domoting Shareholders 

Yvon Chouinard was the first business owner to hand over his billion-dollar company, Patagonia, to the planet. By redefining what it means to be a sustainable and ethical business, many other businesses are taking inspiration from Chouinard. 
The team at Doughnut Economics Action Lab launched a new initiative to help businesses continue to do what they do best without excluding the vulnerable and putting the planet at risk. The network hopes to encourage business leaders to “balance social and environmental concerns with their legal duty to shareholders”. 
As a student, Ellie hopes the scheme will encourage a “conscious and economical future” in the current business landscape. By placing shareholders on par with “communities, the natural world and other[s]”, the scheme will hopefully create a level playing field for established companies and new employees alike. 

The Future of Positive News 

By continuing to share and create impactful conversation, we hope to make a positive impact on morale and wellbeing, improving relationships and helping us to see the positive in the everyday. Going into the future, the team at Artus will continue to share stories which help to make the days seem brighter and more hopeful. To find out more about our business storytelling services, contact us today! 
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