Thursday, March 17, 2011

Watching Japan

Fifty-two percent of Americans followed news of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan "very closely" during the days of March 10-13, according to Pew Research Center. Pew regularly tracks interest in specific news events.

While the majority were following the Japan story "very closely," the percentage was below the level of interest in other disasters in recent years, as you can see below...

Hurricane Katrina: 70%
Haiti earthquake: 60%
Indian Ocean tsunami: 58%
Japanese disaster: 52%

The all-time winner in grabbing the attention of the American public was the Challenger disaster of 1986, followed "very closely" by 80 percent. This surpassed the 78 percent who "very closely" followed news of the 9/11 attacks.

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