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.
Civil liberties were the hot topics across social media last week. Bloggers debated the Supreme Court decision on gun ownership and Finland’s law making Internet access a legal right. Twitter drew attention to the discovery of a privacy leak on the website Foursquare. On YouTube, a video purportedly showing oily rain in the Gulf region led to controversy.
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.
The controversy surrounding General McChrystal – and especially Obama’s role in the matter – commanded attention on blogs and Twitter last week. Twitter users also shared news of a landmark copyright ruling portrayed as a victory for online freedom. And on YouTube, a clip of a dancing baby led to a vibrant conversation over authenticity.
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.
The disaster in the Gulf of Mexico became a hot topic in blogs and on Twitter last week, with the discussion focused on a range of storylines. At the same time, two subjects that had generated little attention in recent weeks—the economy and the war in Afghanistan—also drew significant interest. On YouTube, a Congressman’s angry response to being filmed drew almost 2.5 million views.
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.
Even as the story died down in the mainstream media last week, bloggers continued to debate the Israeli interdiction of a Turkish supply ship that left nine people dead. On Twitter, the focus on computer giant Apple continued. And on YouTube, a startling car accident drew more than three million hits.
In a week when voters went to the polls in 12 states and worries about the federal budget deficit grew, it was the spill of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico that really captured the media’s attention—again. For the third week in a row, the growing disaster accounted for at least one-third of the newshole as finger-pointing became a larger aspect of the coverage.
Passions ran high as the blogosphere was consumed with the deadly confrontation between Israeli forces and a supply ship headed for Gaza last week. On Twitter, stories about European soccer led the week. And on YouTube, videos of the Mavi Marmara incident drew significant interest along with a toddler with an unhealthy addiction.