PEJ: Gadhafi News Tops National Coverage


Not surprisingly, the death of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi was the biggest story among national news outlets last week, while the Occupy Wall Street occupied less of the news hole than the week before.

That is according to the Project for Excellence in Journalism's News Coverage Index for Oct. 17-23. The index looks at coverage from 52 media outlets in five sectors, network TV, cable, radio, online and print.

News of Gadhafi's death occupied 18% of the news hole, nudging out the presidential election (17%). It was the first time in two months Libya received that much coverage, according to PEJ (the toppling of the Gadhafi regime had 26% of the news hole for the Aug. 22-28 reporting period).

Election coverage was driven by yet another Republican debate, this time with the focus on surprise front-runner Herman Cain.

The economy was the third-biggest story at 16% of the news hole, followed by President Obama's announcement that troops would be coming home from Iraq by the end of the year (5%). And drawing almost as much attention as the end of that war after a decade was the story of the Ohio exotic animal collector who released lions and tigers and bears--most of which later were later slain by authorities -- and then killed himself.