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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Overseas Stories Dominate Nation's News Agenda for 7 of Past 8 weeks

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World news captures media's attention

BY STEVE PARKER 
STLtoday.com
March 22, 2011
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Protests and unrest in the Mideast. The earthquake and tsunami and the resulting nuclear threat in Japan.
Largely because of those topics, overseas stories have dominated the nation's news agenda for seven of the past eight weeks,
reports a survey that tracks what news outlets across the United States are covering.
"From Jan. 24 (when the protests heated up in Egypt) until March 20, foreign news has accounted for more than 40 percent of the overall U.S. media newshole, about twice the usual level of attention," the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism reports. The Pew center's New Coverage Index monitors the media's newshole -- the amount of space devoted on Page One by newspapers, and the amount of time allocated by TV and radio stations.
The recent world events propelled many of those stories to the front page. Of 245 stories that started on Page One of the Post-Dispatch from Jan. 24 through March 20 -- 40 articles (16 percent) were about world events. (The Post-Dispatch wasn't among the media outlets monitored in Pew's News Coverage Index.)


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