What’s not news is as telling as what is.
In 2012, FAIR found less than 1% of news stories in 8 major outlets covered poverty.
Despite its widely experienced impact, FAIR’s study found poverty barely registers as a campaign issue. Just 17 of the 10,489 campaign stories studied (0.2 percent) addressed poverty in a substantive way. Moreover, none of the eight outlets included a substantive discussion of poverty in as much as 1 percent of its campaign stories.
While this is shocking testimony to major outlets’ priorities, it’s also an indictment of journalistic effort, as this dearth of coverage occurred despite the number of Americans in poverty being at a 19-year high.
Journalism educators can — and should — emphasizes the importance of covering substantive topics like poverty.
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