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What Makes a Crime A National News Story?

Torrent

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I was looking around at verious websites when it hit me that there are alot of references to GZ vs TM. It struck me that this was just one crime and it seems every couple of months a new story comes out that a crime happened somewhere and most are just fall into "thats sad but oh well" and others capture the whole of the news cycle.
Why is that?
There are according to FBI Crime Data (2011) there are 311,591,917 people in the US. Out of them there are 1,203,564 violent crimes, of which 14,612 are Murder and
nonnegligent manslaughter. What draws natuional coverage of one or two of these but not the rest?
 

RDS

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I was looking around at verious websites when it hit me that there are alot of references to GZ vs TM. It struck me that this was just one crime and it seems every couple of months a new story comes out that a crime happened somewhere and most are just fall into "thats sad but oh well" and others capture the whole of the news cycle.
Why is that?
There are according to FBI Crime Data (2011) there are 311,591,917 people in the US. Out of them there are 1,203,564 violent crimes, of which 14,612 are Murder and
nonnegligent manslaughter. What draws natuional coverage of one or two of these but not the rest?
It's the media which sensationalize matters and the people take it up from there.
 

FederalRepublic

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I was looking around at verious websites when it hit me that there are alot of references to GZ vs TM. It struck me that this was just one crime and it seems every couple of months a new story comes out that a crime happened somewhere and most are just fall into "thats sad but oh well" and others capture the whole of the news cycle.
Why is that?
There are according to FBI Crime Data (2011) there are 311,591,917 people in the US. Out of them there are 1,203,564 violent crimes, of which 14,612 are Murder and
nonnegligent manslaughter. What draws natuional coverage of one or two of these but not the rest?
Race, sex, or preferably both.
 

HonestJoe

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Mostly luck I'd say. Given the number and range of crimes that happen every day as you point out, it's impossible for there to be a single simple characteristic that alone makes something a big story - even the most obscure characteristic would be shared by too many other crimes. It must be a combination of factors that make the difference.

I suspect a lot of these are co-incidental. How slow a news day it is would be key - I'm sure there are plenty of examples of something that would normally be a big story but because less so because a bigger one came up. The time of day might be relevant too (though maybe less with 24-hour news) - miss the newspaper deadline and it's old(er) news by the time it hits the presses. National media will also trawl local (and increasingly the internet) for eye-catching stories so there will be an element of luck in what happens to catch some national hack's eye. Availability of pictures and video will be a big draw too, as will quirky or information-rich first-hand interviews.

Obviously elements of the story itself will be factors too. In the US especially, race is sadly relevant, though not just in the obvious ways - I think it's clear missing white girls are more likely to get national coverage than missing black boys. Victims who are children, mothers, elderly or linked to the military make more news. Victims who are working class, middle-aged or have an unpopular disability tend not to. A suspect on the run or not yet identified could be a catch, as would one identified with some "celebrity" link (however weak). Anything out of the ordinary (or that could be presented as such) will catch the media's attention - run someone down in a car is nothing, do the same in a bus could be different.

They're just what comes to mind. I'm sure there are countless other factors, many none of us will even realise.
 

babilfish

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I was looking around at verious websites when it hit me that there are alot of references to GZ vs TM. It struck me that this was just one crime and it seems every couple of months a new story comes out that a crime happened somewhere and most are just fall into "thats sad but oh well" and others capture the whole of the news cycle.
Why is that?
There are according to FBI Crime Data (2011) there are 311,591,917 people in the US. Out of them there are 1,203,564 violent crimes, of which 14,612 are Murder and
nonnegligent manslaughter. What draws natuional coverage of one or two of these but not the rest?
Details.
 

Sig

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I was looking around at verious websites when it hit me that there are alot of references to GZ vs TM. It struck me that this was just one crime and it seems every couple of months a new story comes out that a crime happened somewhere and most are just fall into "thats sad but oh well" and others capture the whole of the news cycle.
Why is that?
There are according to FBI Crime Data (2011) there are 311,591,917 people in the US. Out of them there are 1,203,564 violent crimes, of which 14,612 are Murder and
nonnegligent manslaughter. What draws natuional coverage of one or two of these but not the rest?

What draws national news coverage of some criminal events and not others all depends upon the dictates of so-called "news agencies" such as UPI, Reuters, AP, etc.. Now, if all these privately owned news agencies were to come under some sort of central control, you might as well refer to them as the "Ministry of Truth" because the people managing such a monolithic news agency are going to determine what events will (or will not) become major news, across continents, in a manner that is eerily Orwellian.

As you may have already figured out, the determining factors of what becomes "major news" have much less to do with what appeals to the public interest, so far as news that is of some practical importance or natural curiosity, than it does with manipulating public opinion with titillating stories that subliminally favor a general political agenda. This is exactly why an otherwise backwater news story about a female African American adult entertainer in Durham, NC accusing some college lacrosse players of sexual assault suddenly and mysteriously becomes "major news" while one of the most depraved true crime events within the same year, namely, the Christian-Newsom Atrocity, is barely whispered by news sources beyond the receptions of Knoxville metropolitan media transmissions.

And, just in case you're wondering, this is exactly why most everyone in the world with even a faint pulse has heard of George Zimmerman, while very few people outside of Rochester, NY have ever heard of Roderick Scott, not even in the wake of the Zimmerman verdict, which undoubtedly would have made the Scott case of very keen interest to most anyone with any interest at all in the Zimmerman case. If this does not strike you as GLARING evidence of just how controlled our news media actually is, and how manipulated you actually are by this controlled news media, then you are absolutely brain dead.
 
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