Newsmakers Who Come from Nowhere
The recent furor over plans to burn the Koran on the anniversary of September 11 generated a large amount of media coverage, attention that was widely criticized, for a previously unknown Florida pastor. Which other people have gained their fifteen minutes of fame by leaping from obscurity to the media spotlight this year?
Koran and Cultural Center Put Islam in the News
A pastor’s plan to commemorate the Sept. 11 terror attacks by burning the Islamic holy book, and an imam’s desire to build a community center near the site of one of those attacks, generated significant media attention during a week of 9/11 remembrances.
A New Phase in Our Digital Lives
The latest biennial survey on news consumption from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press reveals signs of a new era in the acquisition and consumption of news—and there is reason to expect the shift will accelerate. What is the nature of this new era, and why is it happening? A commentary on the findings by PEJ Director Tom Rosenstiel.
Beck Rally, Draws Crowds, Media Attention
Glenn Beck’s recent rally in Washington D.C. drew not only rally participants, but significant media attention as well. How does coverage of this event compare with that of other rallies in the United States over the last three years?
Bloggers Fired up by Heated Political Debates
The blogosphere resembled one of those old CNN Crossfire shows last week as liberals and conservatives frequently faced off on such issues as federal assistance programs, charges of bigotry and opposition to President Obama.
A Near-Miss Hurricane Tops the News
In a busy news week, a massive storm that landed only a glancing blow on the U.S. East Coast was the No. 1 story. Another frightening situation that ended without more disastrous consequences, the Discovery Channel hostage drama, also finished among the top stories. And a formal change in the U.S. role in Iraq generated a rare burst of coverage in that subject.
The Mosque Debate Continues to Galvanize the Blogosphere
The debate over the Islamic Center and mosque near Ground Zero in New York was a hotly contested issue for bloggers for the third week in a row as the focus turned to the motives of those opposing the construction. On Twitter, a new phone app feature from Google created a mostly positive buzz.
Modest Coverage for Pakistan Flooding
The recent flooding in Pakistan, while a tragedy of massive proportions, has generated less than robust coverage in the U.S. mainstream press. The deadly earthquake in Haiti easily generated the most attention of any overseas disaster in 2010, but which other events have generated significant coverage this year?
Elections, Katrina and Economy Split the News Agenda
With the spate of primary races testing the power of the Tea Party movement, the mid-term elections topped the news, but a Katrina anniversary and the faltering economy were close behind. Meanwhile, the New York mosque controversy quieted but didn’t vanish last week.
Islamic Issues Ignite the Blogosphere
The argument over the Park 51 Islamic center continued in the blogosphere last week, but this time, mosque supporters dominated. Bloggers also reacted to a poll that more Americans believe Barack Obama is a Muslim. On Twitter, an article declaring "The Web is dead" was No. 1. And on YouTube, an obscene gesture drove a popular video.