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Media Coverage on School Shootings
Transcript of Media Coverage on School Shootings
By: Haley Pearce
Studies have found that 30% of mass killings and 22% of school shootings appeared to have been inspired by previous events.
After analyzing 160 mass shootings in the United States from 2000- 2013, Andre Simons (FBI behavioral analysis) concluded, "the copycat phenomenon is real".
The media's coverage on school shootings tends to lead to more mass shootings within the next fourteen days.
We are all in school
School shootings are so common that it is hard to imagine that they'd ever stop.
The thought is that media coverage glorifies these killers which then inspires copycats",
The media needs to be limited on what they are allowed to report.
Refrain the media from including details that envoke the visual horror of the crimes: specific weapons used, timelines, and re-imagings of the murder scences.
A restraint on the media
Set laws into effect
Plan Of Action
Considering the likelihood of a law being passed to revise the right to freedom of speech, is non-substantial... We could create a database where previous incidents are documented at full extent in hopes of preventing future copied attacks since there are so many similarities and the chance of another happening within such a small time frame is so high.
Results: The 'copycat phenomenon' will be reduced immensely.
Consequences: Continuous growing rate of school shootings and copycats.
This phenomenon isn't going to go away on its own nor is it going to be changed without yours and I help.
The media protects its right to speak freely but when free speech leads to substantial amounts of harm, it is time to discuss limits.
It is time we find a way to balance the right to freedom of speech with the responsibility to influence ethically.
Real World Action
In the 1980's, following a number of suicides in the subway system in Vienna Austria psychologists there urged local media to withhold details, avoid romanticized language,and to keep the deaths off the front page.
They did so, and the results?
Subway suicides dropped by 75%.
What is the copycat phenomenon?
The thought that with the media's descriptive coverage on mass killings, others are "inspired" by these killers and their killings which then allows them to copy their work.