News Interest Index: Interest In Oil Spill Stays High As Coverage Grows

  • June 03, 2010

As efforts to stop a major underwater oil leak faltered and President Obama traveled to Louisiana to assess the early damage, the crisis in the Gulf of Mexico grabbed public attention and dominated media coverage last week.

More than half of Americans (55%) say they followed news about the oil leak very closely. Close to six-in-ten (58%) say they followed this news more closely than any other major story, according to the latest News Interest Index survey, conducted May 27-30 among 1,001 adults by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. One week earlier, 47% said they were following news about the leak very closely.

News about the unfolding environmental disaster accounted for 38% of media coverage last week. That is more than double the share of newshole devoted to the story one week earlier (18%), when the media also focused heavily on the 2010 midterm elections (also 18%).

Read the full article, Interest In Oil Spill Stays High As Coverage Grows, on the pew Research Center for the People & the Press' Web site.