In LA: If It Bleeds, It Leads

We have all heard the old saying, “If it bleeds, it leads,” and most of us have seen the results of this flawed approach on our evening TV news. However, sometimes it’s what we don’t see that’s most worrying. If stories of crime and car accidents make headlines, what stories are left untold?

A new study from the Norman Lear Center at the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism tries to capture what is lost when our news is full of crime, weather, fluff and sports. For example, in L.A., crime stories led in one out of every three stories, but reporting about L.A.’s budget crisis “topped local news only one time out of 100.” The study also explored how L.A.’s TV stations compared to the L.A. Times coverage of local city government.

In the video below, Marty Kaplan, Director of the Normal Lear Center, discusses some of the report’s findings.

Disclosure: Marty Kaplan is a board member of the Free Press Action Fund.

People + Policy

= Positive Change for the Public Good

people + policy = Positive Change for the Public Good