U.S. news misses economic story

Steve Henn Aug 18, 2008
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U.S. news misses economic story

Steve Henn Aug 18, 2008
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Stacey Vanek-Smith: And all the other networks are joining in with sports commentators and experts. Of course, analyzing sporting events is one thing. Economic news? Entirely another. So says a study out today from the Pew Center’s Project for on Excellence in Journalism. Marketplace’s Steve Henn reports.


Steve Henn: With a recession looming, volatile oil prices and the financial markets in turmoil, the economy emerged as a major media story in 2008. But it’s one that much of the media has a hard time covering, according to Mark Jurkowitz at the Pew Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.

Mark Jurowitz: It’s a complicated story; it’s a multi-layered story. It’s not necessarily an easy story to tell or follow.

And Jurkowitz said the media spent much of this year playing catch-up — with one exception:

Jurkowitz: Gas prices. There if you plotted on a chart, if you plot gas prices and you plot media coverage, they move like two synchronized swimmers in the Olympics. You know, they are together, and it’s easy to see why.

But Jurkowitz found editors and reporters are backing away many more complicated economic stories. That means that even though the economy is issue number one in the eyes of the public, the press is devoting more than four times as much attention to the presidential election.

In Washington, I’m Steve Henn for Marketplace.

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