Top Stories Across Media in 2010

WASHINGTON: It was still the economy in 2010, stupid. The world’s financial condition was the major news story last year, according to data complied by the Pew Research Center. Pew compiled news story topics across TV, radio, the Internet and print and deduced what was most covered. The economy filled 14 percent of the multiplatform news hole from Jan. 1 to Dec. 19, 2010.

“By year’s end, the economy registered among the top four stories every week studied by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism in its weekly News Coverage Index. And the attention given the story was remarkably consistent. Economic news accounted for between 13 and 17 percent of the overall coverage studied in every quarter of 2010,” the center’s report said.

The 2010 Elections were next with 10 percent of the news hole. The BP Oil Spill ranked No. 3 with seven percent. Health care filled 5 percent; Afghanistan, 4 percent; the Haiti earthquake, the Obama Administration, terrorist threats, immigration and education each held 2 percent of the nation’s news hole.

Pew kindly compiled its results on a handy-dandy interactive site by which media platforms can be compared for coverage on given topics. For example, network evening news devoted 10 percent of its news hole to the economy, while small newspapers, for example, devoted nearly 19 percent. A news quiz is also available at Pew’s 2010 Year in the News interactive site.