What's happening up there?!?

Hi, while I am not a pilot I am a diehard aviation enthusiasts who enjoys riding in the back seat. As of recent I have noticed a tremendous amount of stories regarding aircraft mishaps or fatalities. It seems like once a week there is a headline involving a plane mishap. Is this a cause for alarm? What do you think is going on up there in our friendly skies?

Thanks to this interweb thingy stories that would not have made it out of the county a few years ago are spreading around the world now. Overall accident rates are down.