report | Aug 23, 2010

Mosque Controversy, Iraq War Dominate the News

A presidential mention, and intense interest from talk show hosts, pushed a proposed Islamic center in New York City to the top of the news agenda last week. Meanwhile, a milestone in the drawdown of troops in Iraq attracted more media coverage than the war has received in more than a year.

report | Aug 16, 2010

The 2010 Midterms Rise; the Gulf Spill Sinks

With the fall balloting closer on the horizon, the crucial midterm elections topped the headlines last week—with a troublesome economy close behind. The death of a well-known politician and debates over immigration policy also finished among the top five stories as did the oil spill saga—though it is quickly losing steam.

report | Aug 9, 2010

A Tough Economy and a Plugged Leak Top the News

Two familiar stories—an economy slow to recover and an oil leak slow to be stopped—generated the most press attention last week. But there was plenty of politics as well including two hot button issues—same-sex marriage and illegal immigration—and the mid-term elections. And after one week of big headlines, Afghanistan coverage plunged.

report | Aug 2, 2010

Afghanistan Tops the News

Coverage of the conflict in Afghanistan got a big boost last week after the WikiLeaks organization unearthed classified reports casting doubts on the prospects for U.S. success there. But in a balanced news week, a key ruling in the Arizona immigration battle, the departure of an embattled BP CEO and a sluggish economy shared the media’s attention.

report | Jul 26, 2010

Old and New Media Both Make News, but Economy Tops the Agenda

In a week in which economic news nearly hit a three-month high, cable talk shows were dominated by the resignation of a federal employee whose comments on race were taken out of context by a conservative website. Meanwhile, in the Gulf of Mexico, the debate was about the merits of plugging the BP oil well with a “topkill” or a “bottom kill.” 

report | Jul 19, 2010

With New Hope for Containment, the Gulf Spill Leads

After several weeks of decreasing coverage, the Gulf oil saga spiked upward last week amid news of possible success in stopping the flow. Coverage of a bill to regulate the financial sector, infighting among Democrats, violence and progress in Afghanistan and the death of a baseball mogul rounded out the roster of top stories.

report | Jul 12, 2010

Oil Leads Again as Stocks, Spies and Politics Contend for Coverage

The environmental disaster in the Gulf continued to draw media attention last week, though far below the levels it once commanded. Coverage of the politics surrounding the mid-term elections edged out a mixed bag of economic news for the No. 2 slot. And an NBA superstar proved to be one of the week’s biggest newsmakers.

report | Jul 6, 2010

The Spill Leads the News in a Balanced Week

Coverage of the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico edged out gloomy economic news and the mostly routine Elena Kagan confirmation hearings last week. But even as it regained the top spot after a one-week hiatus, there is evidence of diminishing media interest in the BP spill saga.

report | Jun 28, 2010

Afghan War Tops the News, Edging out Oil Spill

Obama’s replacement of General McChrystal as the head of NATO forces in Afghanistan generated voluminous political analysis last week. Coverage of the war approached a level not seen since late last year. Meanwhile, the Gulf oil spill continued to attract headlines, as did Wall Street reform. 

report | Jun 21, 2010

The Gulf Disaster Becomes a Beltway Story

Damage control in Washington overtook damage control in the Gulf of Mexico as the BP oil spill generated its biggest week of media coverage since the April 20 rig explosion that triggered the disaster. The narrative was driven, in large part, by a president who spoke to the nation and an oil executive who took a pounding from Congress.

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