Here are the statistics furnished by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism. Their methodology is valid. PEJ also proves the DailySkew’s Media Scale of Attention. I will list my comments after each news story.
Newshole Coverage of Mainstream Media October 3-9, 2011
2012 Presidential Election: 18%- Technically overrated considering no one will remember the also-rans after the 2012 election, and the uhm fact that is 2011 and a lot of things can change before November 2012. Frankly it’s pure speculation and idle talk to guess how President Obama will fare against the Republican candidates. But, like guessing who will win the World Series, it’s fun for a bunch of folks. The problem is that this leads the newshole, when so many other things are happening in the world.
Economy: 15%- It’s the story that will not go away. We have now heard every theory from every expert and we sit back and watch the left and right debate bills. We get bombarded with unemployment stats, stock market fears, tax plans, and watch politicians and talking heads squabble over everything. I have nothing to add to the conversation anymore and am trying to take care of my own business without the fear mongering or pessimism that is prevalent in this newshole. All I have is my vote and have no opinion to spread the word here on the Skew about who’s right or wrong. You can check out Tony Vahl’s views on the economy (here is a good starting point) and be sure to check out the educational videos over at Kahn’s Academy that they should have taught you in school. The economy is not as complex as the politicians make it out to be.
Apple: 11%: This newshole was about the death Steve Jobs and the future of Apple. I am OK with this coverage since it is such an important corporation that is linked to many technological advances seen in every day life.
Occupy Wallstreet: 7%- PEJ actually combined Occupy Wallstreet with the Economy, but I separated them. A 7% newshole in mainstream media is huge. By now, conservative outlets see them as anarchists, while the left outlets support them (although Vahl informed me that NPR was slow to figure Occupy Wallstreet out). The bottom line is that the movement is spreading, their official website is updated, and the protests are bringing topics to the table of discussion, no matter how hard traditionalists look down upon them. There has still been a “feeling out period” because they don’t have a leader, and many protestors come from diverse backgrounds. Pigeon holing the movement is hard. The problem with mainstream sources getting behind the movement are statements like this- from Occupy Wallstreet’s official call to action: “If you agree that state and corporation are merely two sides of the same oppressive power structure, if you realize how media distorts things to preserve it, how it pits the people against the people to remain in power, then you might be one of us.” and “If you agree that power is not right, that life trumps property, then you might be one of us.” With Chavez, Castro, Khamenei, leftist China, and Kim Jong-il releasing statements supporting Occupy Wall Street, it’s clear that Occupy Wall Street will continue to be labeled as a socialist or Communist movement, just as the Tea Party is labeled as a bunch of right winger racists, and No Labels has been labeled as a bunch of moderate flakes. For the record, I support all legal protesting, but will not personally join any movement. Anger leads to hatred. And hatred leads to the Dark Side. Yoda taught me that.
Amanda Knox Trial: 7%- A very important international situation, although it was probably overblown considering how many other people have been unjustly put on trial or are currently in holding and rotting away in a prison right now. My wife followed the Amanda Knox situation a while ago, and I have a feeling women value the story more than men.
Nobel Prizes: 4%- Gotta be kidding me, right? People still pay attention to those things after infamous winners of the years? Remember when the Guinness Book of World Records was popular back in 1979?
Lead Newsmakers (Number of Stories)
Obama: 68- The economy actually got worse after his great speech. I tell you this from Ground Zero in South Florida where things have just STOPPED since that night. People are scared and don’t have any leadership at the national level.
Amanda Knox: 64- Guilty or not guilty? Who is Amanda Knox? What did she know? What did her roommates know? What about her personal life? All valid questions.
Steve Jobs: 54- Justified, because he was a huge public figure in American history.
Rick Perry: 32- Totally unjustified to get so much media attention. I imagine Herman Cain’s newshole percentage will increase.
Chris Christie: 31- A major reason why I hate the mainstream media: a person gets covered for saying he is NOT running for president in 2012. Totally inappropriate. Not sure who even cares about this non-story. I mean, it’s truly, truly a non-story, and when you consider there are probably millions of people that could be more newsworthy, it becomes ridiculous for Chris Christie to get so much coverage in the newshole. Talk about northeast bias.
Top Stories in Blogs
New iPhone: It’s the story that will always be on people’s minds no matter what year it is. The iPhone may be the most sought after device since the TV.
HTC Android Security: Well, anytime there’s a story about security, it means there’s a security hole. Oops.
Samsung Galaxy Nexus: One reason why blogs write about tech stuff so much is because they can sell products via affiliates or click through banners. It’s all good.
Steve Jobs Death: He was an icon to the internet community.
Obama and New Black Panthers: Here are the shock photos thanks to Andrew Breitbart. When will conservatives realize that Obama is a Teflon man when it comes to stuff like that (see: Reverend Wright).
All and all, I’m pretty disappointed that the blogs had 3 tech stories only because it fits the nasty stereotype that “all bloggers are tech geeks”. It seems like blogs are either about tech, bitching about the government, or cooking, so I guess I should be used to it.
Top Stories on Twitter
Steve Jobs Death: Twitter users generally love to post RIPs. When you through a tech legend like Jobs in the mix, it becomes a phenomena.
Justin Bieber: What else is new? Young girls love him and young guys hate him.
How to reduce spam: Funny, since that Tweet was just a viral message that hit back to Mashable. It was a lame 4 slide slideshow with the most generic information. Just a way for you to click on their banner advertisements. It’s ironic how tech geeks don’t consider that to be SPAM.
Twitter hiring: You can find Twitter jobs here. Too bad you don’t qualify.
Google +: Once again, another link to Mashable, this time criticizing Google Plus.
Besides Steve Jobs and Justin Bieber, it doesn’t seem that Twitter has its finger on the pulse of mainstream society at all. Twitter’s top stories showed was manipulated by Mashable. You’d have thought Occupy Wallstreet would have broke the Top 5 during this time frame.
Anyway, there you have it. These are the news topics that YOU, the people, asked for. Amazing how blogs and tweets are different than mainstream media coverage.