Campaign knocked off the top slot


We wouldn’t have believed it if we hadn’t seen it with our own eyes. Sure it’s the doldrums before the national conventions. We’re still surprised, according to the Project for Excellence in Journalism study for the week of 8/11/08-8/18/08, that the Georgia/Russia conflict actually managed to oust Campaign 2008 from the top of the news coverage chart. The conflict beat out the campaign 26% to 21%, and with the Olympics grabbing 14%, there wasn’t much room for extensive coverage of much else.

John Edwards managed to be the best of all the rest with 4% of the newshole (although that’s probably not the way he saw it). Even campaign-drunk cable dropped it under the halfway point to 44%. The US economy and gas/oil prices, hot topics most of the year, clung to the top ten by their fingernails, dropping to 3% and 1% respectively.

Story Overall Newspaper Online Net.TV CATV Radio
Georgia/Russia conflict 26% 28% 31% 23% 21% 29%
2008 campaign 21% 13% 11% 12% 44% 25%
Olympics 14% 13% 18% 28% 2% 9%
John Edwards affair 4% x 2% 3% 7% 8%
US economy 3% 6% 1% 4% 2% 1%
Energy debate 2% 2% x 4% 1% x
Shooting at AR Dem. HQ 2% x 5% x 1% <1%
Missing girl in FL 2% x x x 6% x
Pakistan 1% 2% 5% x x x
Gas/oil prices 1% x x 3% 1% 2%
Immigration x 2% x x 1% x
Cyberspace issues x 2% x x x x
Events in Iraq x 2% x x x x
Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac x 2% x x x x
Clark Rockefeller/kidnapping x x 4% x x x
Zimbabwe elections x x 2% x x x
US auto industry x x 1% x x x
China x x x 2% x x
Domestic terrorism x x x 1% x x
Health care debate x x x 1% x x
Afghanistan x x x x x 3%
War on terror x x x x x 2%
US airline industry x x x x x 1%

Source: Project for Excellence in Journalism