News Interest Index: Midwest Tornadoes Top Story for Public and Press

Jun 01, 2011

The devastating tornadoes that ripped through the Midwest last week dominated the public’s news interest and received much more coverage than any other story.

About half of the public (48%) says they followed news about the powerful tornadoes that struck Joplin, Mo., more closely than any other news last week. None of the week’s other top stories comes close, according to the latest weekly News Interest Index survey conducted May 26-29 among 1,000 adults by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press.

News about the tornadoes made up 22% of all coverage, according to a separate analysis by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism (PEJ). News about the tornadoes made up 46% of network news airtime and 38% of cable news coverage examined last week.

Read the full report, Midwest Tornadoes Top Story for Public and Press, on the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press Web site.

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